Lufkin, TX (KTRE) - Lufkin native Kendall Beard is going to the next round in the American Idol competition.
Appearing in tonight's (Thursday) final audition round from San Juan Puerto Rico, the 23 year old songstress received the much anticipated and highly coveted nods from the judges to move to the Hollywood round of the competition.
Kendall is the daughter of Darryl Beard, owner of Beard Fine Jewelers in Lufkin. He's been bursting with pride, but has maintained his silence when asked about Kendall's quest to become the next American Idol. He told East Texas News that he hoped to have "plenty to talk about soon."
American Idol is a program of discovery, trying to find the best singer in the country through a series of nationwide auditions. The later stages of the competition are determined by public voting by phone. The format features four judges, record producer and music manager Randy Jackson, pop singer and choreographer Paula Abdul, music executive and music manager Simon Cowell and singer/songwriter and record producer Kara DioGuardi, who give critiques of the contestants' performances. The show is hosted by former children's game show emcee and television personality Ryan Seacrest.
According to the American Idol website, "the auditions continue through hour-long episodes. The schedule is listed below.
Viewers who can't stand to watch terrible singers humiliate themselves will want to start tuning in on Tuesday, February 3rd, which is when the Hollywood Round will begin. It'll kick off with a two-hour episode, followed by a one-hour episode the following night revealing the Top 24.
The first 12 semifinalists will perform in two-hour episodes airing on Tuesday, February 17th and Wednesday, February 18th. Those performances will be the first to allow audience voting, which means eliminations begin. The second 12 semifinalists episodes will air on Tuesday, February 24th and Wednesday, February 25th.
The third 12 semifinalists shows and the wild card round will follow the next week.
Finally, the performances of the Top 12 will begin on Tuesday, March 10, with a two-hour episode. The first single elimination of the season will take place the following night."
"Mum" is still the word in the Beard household, out of respect for Kendall's wishes and her contractual agreements with the show, however, the buzz on the web is that 23 year old could be a contender for the Top 50.
The Top 50 will be whittled down to 36 by the producers this month, and in February, the Top 36 will compete live in the semi-finals after being revealed in "the chair" episode in February. Fans of Lufkinite Kendall Beard are hoping she's in that final number.
Kendall's style has been described as a powerful blend of modern rock and roll, a touch of rhythm and blues and a pinch of country. Click here song clips for an example of Kendall Beard's music at CD Baby.
On Kendall's MySpace Music page, the 23 year old is quoted as saying she had a love for music at an early age. "As long as I can remember, I have had an interest in entertaining." The website goes on to say Kendall grew up spending many weekends performing at various venues in Texas, such as the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo and The Johnny High Country Music Review. "My parents would pick me up from school and we would travel all weekend to different county fairs and country oprys and we would return just in time to be back at school Monday morning."
The American Idol winner receives a one million (US) dollar record deal with a major label, and is managed by American Idol-related 19 management. In some cases, other finalists have also been signed by the show's management company (who has first option to sign contestants) and received record deals with its major label partner.
You can read more about the history of the show at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/American_Idol
KTRE-TV and ktre.com will keep you up to date on Kendall's journey as results from the American Idol contest are released.
The following is a season schedule.