As soon as Cormier, 19, walked into the room, judge Luke Bryan called her a “fresh face” and tried to pinpoint which actress she looked like. Katy Perry guessed Anne Hathaway before the country singer, 42, realized that Cormier reminded him of Rachel McAdams, the star of what turned out to be the former TLC personality’s “favorite movie,” The Notebook.
Cormier did not tell the judges that she has appeared on TV before, but her husband and season 5 costar, David Vázquez Zermeño, was outside in the waiting area to support her audition.
“I’ve been married now for one whole year,” Cormier gushed before singing a beautiful rendition of Chris Isaak’s “Wicked Game” while playing an acoustic guitar.
“Literally one of my favorite voices I’ve ever heard in my life,” Perry, 34, raved at the end of the song.
Lionel Richie chimed in, “You have a sound that’s yours. I love the air. I don’t know what you’re doing, but whatever it is, it’s … absolutely an amazing identity. … I’m thrilled that we have you. [Your voice] is something that we want to showcase. It’s something that we want to show off.”
Cormier became visibly emotional after hearing the judges’ remarks. All three of them then voted “yes” and handed her a golden ticket to Hollywood.
“Evelyn, pick the right songs,” Perry advised. “You are my favorite voice.”
The former reality star revealed on Instagram in December that she had auditioned for Idol’s 17th season. She continued to tease her journey in the months that followed, while husband Vázquez Zermeño shared videos of her singing with her guitar on his own account.
American Idol airs on ABC Sundays and Mondays at 8 p.m. ET.
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