That Time I Saw American Idol LIVE

My kids and I got be in the studio audience of “American Idol” last week! What was it like? I’m glad you asked…

It was AWESOME! But let me be more specific….

Getting the Tickets. Believe it or not, they were FREE! I signed us up for tickets a few months ago, on this website.

In the parking garage

In the parking garage

Audience members are chosen at random. I got the email containing our ticket a few days before the show. It is filmed on a Thursday, so we took the day off school. But it was worth it!Displaying IMG_4284.JPGDisplaying IMG_4284.JPG

Getting to the Studio. We were told to be in line no later than 2:30pm. We decided to get there by 12:30pm. There were already 50 or so in line ahead of us when we arrived, so we were glad we arrived when we did. Because we stopped on the way to have breakfast with a friend, we left home at 8:30am.

At the gate to CBS Television Studios

At the gate to CBS Television Studios

Waiting Part 1. Around 1:30 or so, folks with clipboards started separating those of us in line: cute teens were sent to the front of the line, plain adults were told to keep waiting. Thankfully, as the parent of cute teens, I got to move up with them! I got a ticket and the kids got wristbands. Once we went past the gate (where we saw Nigel Lythgoe, of “So You Think You Can Dance”, drive by!!), we were separated. Cute teens could take their phones and wait to be placed by the stage. Moms were sent around back, no phones, to wait for a seat in the audience.

Right by the stage!!

Right by the stage!!

Waiting Part 2. We waited outside for about an hour an half – me with the old folks and, did I mention, no phones. The kids with their phones in a different area. That was long and dull – especially because, for the first hour, no one around me wanted to talk. Thankfully, the weather was beautiful and we were in a covered area, though sitting on hard metal benches.

Getting In. We finally got in, around 4pm. The adults had tickets with specific seats on them, though we were moved, anyway. (Side note: Taylor Hicks was in the row right in front of me!) The teens were herded in by the stage and encouraged to take as many pics as possible. There was a guy whose job it was to get the teens excited, and he was fabulous!

Demi and Keith talking during a commercial break

Demi and Keith talking during a commercial break

Demi Lovato! Demi Lovato filmed her songs before the show started, so that happened around 4:15. My kids were right at the stage when she sang, and she gave each of them high 5’s on her way out! They were thrilled. She was amazing, and she seemed very down-to-earth as she waited for the filming to start…and restart.

My Happy Place. So, full disclosure…the whole reason I wanted to go was to see Harry Connick, Jr. I have been a fan of his for 25+ years, and I have never seen him in person. Not only did I get to see him — I was sitting RIGHT BEHIND HIM. And, when he sang, the camera he sang to was RIGHT NEXT TO ME. All the driving, waiting, and phoneless-ness was worth that right there.

That's me - left of Harry in the coral shirt

That’s me – behind Harry (in the coral shirt)!!

The Show. During the commercial breaks, the judges would talk to the kids by the stage and take selfies with them. They would also get “fixed” by their hair and make-up crew (Jennifer Lopez’ crew came every break – though she didn’t need it. She is stunning! The guys’ crews just came a couple times total.) Harry and Keith spent a lot of time just chatting with each other. It was neat to see that they’re just real people, friends who catch up with each others’ lives. They also answered texts, and talked with their kids. Very “normal”. During filming, we cheered and clapped and enjoyed the amazing talent. The

The commercial break before the elimination

The commercial break before the elimination

studio is smaller than it looks on TV, so we could see everyone and everything. It was fantastic!

The End. This was filmed from 5pm-7pm, so it could be aired live at 8pm on the east coast. We were back in the parking garage by 7:30pm, exhausted, but thrilled. It was an experience we’ll never forget! The kids were especially tired because, from 4pm-7pm, they were on their feet. They all fell asleep before I even made it onto the freeway. The traffic in LA is always rough, so we didn’t get home until 10:30pm. A long day. But SO worth it.

 

2 Comments

  1. jay hammock
    Apr 28, 2016

    Nice read about you and your families adventure at “American Idol” Krista. A lot of people don’t know there’s a lot of hurry up and wait. But in the end it’s entertaining and Fun!

  2. u4fifa
    Jun 4, 2016

    You bet !

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