The search for America’s next singing sensation is on! American Idol is back for season 21 and it’s sixht season on ABC. Katy Perry, Luke Bryan, and Lionel Richie will be heading to Las Vegas, Nashville, and New Orleans, along with host Ryan Seacrest, to find fresh faces who have what it takes to be the next winner of American Idol.
The show returns to its Sunday night timeslot and will begin with all-new auditions. Some of the season 21 contestants have already been revealed. From the premiere date to the judges to new mentors, HollywoodLife has rounded up all the latest American Idol season 21 updates.
When Does American Idol Season 21 Start?
American Idol season 21 will premiere February 19 at 8 p.m. on ABC. Episodes will be available to stream on Hulu the next day. The show will air one episode on Sundays until the auditions are over. Once American Idol moves into Hollywood Week and beyond, the show will air on Sundays and Mondays.
Katy called American Idol a “launching pad” for singers during her February 16 appearance on Jimmy Kimmel Live! “They’re coming from all walks of life, all over the country. They really represent the fabric of America, and they’re all coming together, and they really are so unified. It’s such a beautiful show. I’m so proud of it,” Katy gushed.
Lionel also pointed out what changed the “equation” of the show. “Instead of having these in-person interviews, they started doing it online, which means it’s from a city we’ve never heard of in Arkansas,” Lionel said. Katy added, “You used to have to stand in line with thousands of people, and now you can just click a Zoom link and audition.”
Two days before the premiere, ABC released the opening of season 21 to Entertainment Weekly. American Idol is celebrating its 21st birthday, and Ryan is calling it the “party of the century.”
Each of the judges receives a gold box with “21” engraved on the front. Inside is a blue and gold ticket that says “You’re Invited.” The video also gives glimpses of the amazing auditions. “I think you might just be incredible,” Luke says to one contestant.
Who Are The Judges Of American Idol Season 21?
Lionel Richie, Katy Perry, and Luke Bryan are all back as the American Idol season 21 judges. This marks their sixth season as Idol judges. They joined the show when ABC revived the FOX series in 2018. Ahead of the season 21 premiere, Lionel and Katy appeared on Jimmy Kimmel Live! together to promote the show.
“We’re like family. Lionel’s my uncle, and Luke’s my brother. I mean, this is our sixth season. We love our job. We love each other. We have so much respect for each other and respect for the gig,” Katy said.
The latest judging trio followed in the footsteps of former Idol judges Simon Cowell, Paula Abdul, Randy Jackson, Jennifer Lopez, Steven Tyler, Keith Urban, and more. Lionel, Katy, and Luke are the second-longest-serving judges after the original trio.
Who Are The American Idol Season 21 Contestants?
Over the course of season 21, viewers will get to meet the talented new singers hoping to make it big on American Idol. Leading up to the premiere, American Idol released some of the names of the contestants and portions of the auditions.
Sixteen-year-old Haven Madison will be featured in the season 21 premiere. She sings her original song “Fifteen” in hopes of nabbing a golden ticket from the judges. Her dad plays the guitar as Haven performs. The judges give her a standing ovation after her performance. Lionel tells Haven that her “songwriting ability is incredible.” Katy says that the “vocal decisions” that Haven made were “on another level.”
Marybeth Byrd will also be auditioning in season 21. “In the country world, Marybeth Byrd is sticking out to me. She’s kinda one of those sneaky, good people and has a super country voice,” Luke says in a video that features her audition. Marybeth hails from Armorel, Arkansas. Luke tells her that he sees a “very bright future” for the country singer.
The judges have an emotional moment when contestant Iam Tongi auditions for the show. Luke is brought to tears when Iam performs. Lionel loves that Iam wears his “heart on his sleeve.”
Who Won American Idol Season 20?
Noah Thompson, a construction worker from Kentucky, was crowned the winner of American Idol season 20. He beat out HunterGirl to become the new champion. After the season was over, Noah and HunterGirl went on tour together.
“There’s no other person I want to do that with than Hunter. We became best friends on that show and we’re going to just have a blast out on the road together,” Noah told HollywoodLife EXCLUSIVELY ahead of the tour.
Who Are The New American Idol Mentors?
The American Idol season 21 mentors for the contestants when they go to Hawaii will be Noah Cyrus and Allen Stone. American Idol announced the mentors with Instagram photos of the singers in Hawaii.
Noah is a Grammy nominee best known for her hit song “July.” She’s also Miley Cyrus’ younger sister. Allen is a soul and R&B singer who has released 5 albums. He previously appeared on American Idol in 2018 and sang duets with contestants.
Will The Platinum Tickets Be Back?
The American Idol platinum tickets are expected to be back. At each of the audition locations, the judges will hand out a platinum ticket. The platinum ticket guarantees the contestant a spot during Hollywood Week, and they also get to watch other contestants so they can pick the best duet partner.Click to Subscribe to Get Our Free HollywoodLife Daily Newsletter to get the hottest celeb news.