Weber State University student Kalli Therinae went to Oklahoma City, Okla., in order to audition for Season 12 of “American Idol.” Therinae made it through to the auditions in Hollywood.
About 300 people performed again out of the thousands who initially auditioned. The judges narrowed the pool of contestants down to 40, 20 female and 20 male. The singers originally performed individually, but then were put into groups. At the Hollywood auditions, Therinae was cut during the group performances.
This is Therinae’s second time being on “American Idol.” She first tried out the season before and also made it to Hollywood, and made it as far as the top 90 before being cut.
“Sometimes all you can do is do your best,” Therinae said. “You never know how the judges will vote.”
She said she has thought about auditioning again next season, because each time she auditions she gets a little further. Although this is her second time on the show, this season was her first time getting airtime on television.
“Every time has been such a great experience,” Therinae said. “I’ve learned a lot.”
Therinae is a freshman at WSU majoring in journalism, but plans to have a career in singing.
“I love to sing,” she said. “I’ve been singing since I was really young, and (‘American Idol’) is a really big venue for people like me who love to sing.”
Therinae said she likes to sing pop, rock and soul music, and also writes her own music.
“I love to write music; I love to express myself that way,” she said. “I write about things I am passionate about.”
Therinae said she has written songs about pursuing her dreams and a song about fighting because she is a peacemaker. She said that when she was working with her group during the “American Idol” group performances, she was the one who kept the peace when the group started fighting.
She said she decided on majoring in journalism because she loves to write in any form. She also plays the guitar and a little bit of the keyboard.
Therinae also competed on “Greece’s Got Talent” in 2006, when she was 14, and made it to the finals. She ended up being the runner-up in the competition for the $250,000 prize. She was born in Texas, but lived in Greece for four years before moving to Utah.
In 2004, she performed at the Special Olympics opening ceremony in Athens. She now has a YouTube channel where she posts videos of her performances, including when she performed for Sessions on the Ledge at WSU. She said she is also planning on participating in the upcoming WSU competition Weber’s Got Talent.
“‘American Idol’ catapults you into fame,” Therinae said. “To get that on your own is more difficult, but I’ll try my best. It’s brought a lot of exposure.”
Therinae said she will go to Nashville and Pennsylvania soon in order to get more contacts for her singing career. She said she is meeting some producers there and hopes to land a record deal. She said she would be happy with either a big label contract or an indie contract. She also plans on performing in coffeehouses, at her church and bars when she becomes of age.
“The experience (of auditioning for ‘American Idol’) itself is so grueling,” said Michelle Georgellis, Therinae’s mother. “It’s really an honor that she got that far. It’s been a tough journey.”
Georgellis said the audition in Hollywood was the first time she did not go with her daughter to an audition.
Therinae’s performances can be viewed on her YouTube channel at www.youtube.com/user/TheKalliTherinae.