Everhart advances to Top 24 on ‘Idol’


Gluckstadt’s Hannah Everhart made it through last Sunday’s Showstoppers round of “American Idol” to advance to the Top 24 contestants this season.

The Showstoppers round was the first time this season contestants got a chance to showcase their talents by performing with a band for a chance to make it into the Top 24 of contestants.

Sunday’s segment featuring Everhart started with her having a conversation with celebrity judges Katy Perry and Luke Bryan.

“Bandana Hannah! I like Bandana Hannah. Are you a sweet child or a bitter child?” Bryan said as Everhart, who was wearing a bandana over her hair and wearing heavy eye shadow and resembling  Axle Rose of Guns N Rose’s fame, took her seat.

Everhart said she was a little mix of both.

“We know that to be true, sister from another mister,” Perry said, referring back to Everhart’s first audition in front of the judges where Perry asked her if she was the country version of her. “Do you believe you’re even here?”

“No, ma’am,” Everhart replied. “But I am.” 

“Just like I can’t believe you get ribs out of a gas station,” Perry said.

Everhart said she never thought she would make it this far, because she comes from a small town where she spends time riding her horse in the pasture and eating gas station barbecue.

“I’ve never performed with a band before, but again, I’ve got to go out there and do the dang thing,” Everhart said. “It’s really about show-stopping yourself as well. You have to be the show to make the show. I’m going to try. We don’t know what’s going to happen though.”

Everhart sang “Wrecking Ball,” a song popularized by Miley Cyrus.

“Come on, sister from another mister,” Perry said as the show began. 

Everhart said in an interview after the show aired that receiving the yes vote to progress to the Top 24 made her feel like she was on top of Mount Everest.

“The band was awesome,” she said. “When you’re on the stage, you can feel the drums moving through your body. The piano, guitar, everything. It really awakened something in me and made me want to perform with bands for the rest of my life.”

The time for the judging came once Everhart was finished. Perry said she could see something there, but Byran disagreed and said he wasn’t sure if she was “all the way there.”

“You’re only 17,” Perry said to Everhart. “I was 17 once. I had a fire in my eyes, which you do. I have a sass about me, which you do. At 17, I didn’t do the work. So what I wish for you in the future, is to do the work. Know that all of that — the flare, the character, the sass — when you want to become a real, big-time star, that comes after. So when I see you next time, you promise me some ribs?”

“Yes, ma’am,” Everhart replied.

“Great,” Perry said. “Then I promise you the Top 24.”

Everhart said she was grateful to advance to the Top 24, and it gave her a lot of confidence that the judges thought she was good enough to keep going.

“All I could say was, ‘Wow,’ and I am ready to amp it up some more,” she said. “I want to give more to them and really give it my all. Being able to go back home and tell people I’m in the Top 24 is a really proud moment for me.” 

As Everhart left the stage, Perry asked if she was going to get a half slab or a full slab of ribs. Everhart promised her a full slab and said, “Go big or go home, baby!”

Then the screen cut to Everhart jumping into a pool with all of her denim and even the bandana on to end her segment. The narrator remarked, “Hannah jumps into the Top 24 with a splash.”

The next episodes of “American Idol” will be the All Star Duets and Solo Rounds with a live studio audience of big “Idol” fans. After the solo round, contestants will be paired with a celebrity singer. 

For the first time this season, America will get to vote on April 4 and 5 on who will move to the next round. It is not determined when Everhart’s duet episode will air.  

Overnight voting begins following each duet episode and four contestants will be eliminated from the various duet groups after both episodes have aired. The Top 16 results will be revealed the following week during the episode on April 11. Voting instructions and information will be on AmericanIdol.com/vote. 

“I want to let everyone know that I am so grateful for everyone’s support,” Everhart said. “Help this Mississippi girl get to the next round.”

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