Del Mar, Calif. — American Idol Season 14 auditions kicked off at an unusual venue Friday – the San Diego County Fair. An announcement on the Idol website read in part:
“Some of our nation’s greatest hidden talent exists right in our own neighborhood, which is why this year American Idol is leaving no stone unturned in our efforts to find America’s next superstar!
This summer, in addition to our traditional auditions, for the very first time in Idol history, we will be conducting an audition in a new setting, the San Diego County Fair on June 13 and 14 in Del, Mar, CA”
Del Mar was not included in the original list of cities announced last month for auditions. A small but enthusiastic group who heard about the auditions lined up to sing Friday afternoon.
“I found out yesterday and I thought, ‘Why not?’ said Poway High School Junior Allyson Kusuda.
For Kimberly Blood, this was her third time auditioning.
“It’s two producers and you sing in front of them first and then after that, you go on to the next round and hopefully sing in front of America,” she said of the process.
Luke Randall who planned to sing Radioactive by Imagine Dragons while playing guitar for the producers said he was auditioning to make his 10 year old sister proud.
“I’ve never tried out before. I’ve never watched the show,” he said. “Now when I win this (news clip) is going to go viral.”
Marvin Calderon, Junior said he too had to return.
“What brought me out here today? Redemption,” he said. “After what happened on Season 12, I’m back and hopefully they will take me back.”
Calderon made it to the end of Hollywood week and then got cut.
“This time around I’m more confident and I believe in myself this time, so let’s see where it goes,” he said.
Auditions continue Saturday 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. at the Del Mar Racetrack’s Surfside Race Place which is located inside the fairgrounds. Auditions are open “without registering” to “all eligible fairgoers between the ages of 15 and 28,” according to the Idol rules.