The auditions may be over for American Idol season 14, but there’s so much more to look forward to in the coming weeks and months. FOX has released the schedule for Idol leading up to the first elimination after the Top 12.
As usual, there will be a Hollywood Week, but after that, the Top 48 take part in an Idol Showcase, a new element this season that seems like it’s taking the place of the Las Vegas round that some recent seasons have featured. Then the semifinals will perform in what’s called the Idol Road Trip. And when all is said and done, 12 finalists will remain to compete for the title. Read on to find out the details of what’s coming up for season 14.
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Wednesday, February 4: Hollywood Round, Part 1 (8-9:01pm)
Thursday, February 5: Hollywood Round, Part 2 (8-9pm)
Wednesday, February 11: Hollywood Round, Part 3 (8-9:01pm)
Thursday, February 12: Hollywood Round, Part 4 (8-9pm)
As we all know, Hollywood Week is a very grueling round for the contestants. This season, the judges will have the most memorable singers from the “first phase of the auditions,” as the press release says, perform solos. Those who impress the judges enough get to move straight on to the Group Day. The rest of the contestants will then perform for Harry Connick Jr., Jennifer Lopez and Keith Urban.
Group Day, airing on February 5, will see the contestants getting into groups and choosing songs that best showcase their individual voices as well as their ability to collaborate as a group.
In the final two episodes of Hollywood Week, the contestants will perform on their own with the band, and they’ll also get some time to talk with the judges and ask questions.
Wednesday, February 18: Performances from House of Blues (8-9:01pm)
Thursday, February 19: Performance from House of Blues — Top 24 Revealed (8-9pm)
The Showcase is a new element for season 14. As this point, there are 48 contestants still in the competition, and they’ll perform at the House of Blues in front of an audience. Before the live shows begin, this will be a good warm-up to that so the singers can get used to singing in front of an audience instead of just the judges and the other contestants. By the end of this round, the judges will narrow the field down to the Top 24 semifinalists.
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The Idol Road Trip (Semifinals — Voting Begins)
Wednesday, February 25: Top 12 Guys Perform (8-9:01pm)
Thursday, February 26: Top 12 Girls Perform (8-9pm)
Wednesday, March 4: Top 8 Guys Perform (8-9:01pm)
Thursday, March 5: Top 8 Girls Perform (8-9pm)
Wednesday, March 11: Top 12 Finalists Revealed (8-9:01pm)
Last season, the semifinal round was called Rush Week. This time, it’s called the Idol Road Trip — and it has this name because the Top 24 will travel to the home of Motown, Detroit, MI, and perform at The Fillmore Detroit theater.
The performances will take place over two weeks as America votes for the first time this season and narrows it down to eight guys and eight girls, then finally the Top 12.
Thursday, March 12: Top 12 Perform (8-9pm)
Thursday, March 19: Results Show — Two Contestants Will Be Eliminated (8-10pm)
There are several things to note about the start of the finals. We already knew Idol would be slimming down to just once a week at some point. This looks to be the week that happens.
But this schedule brings up some questions: will these episodes be airing on Thursdays or is this just an exception? Bones returns on Thursday, March 26, so it’s likely this is just a one-off and Idol will be on Wednesdays, unless FOX announces a change in scheduling for Bones. Thursday is a big night for television, with shows like The Big Bang Theory, Scandal and The Blacklist; it wouldn’t be the best move for Idol to air on Thursdays. FOX hasn’t revealed the show’s schedule beyond March 19, so we’ll just have to wait and see what happens.
Also, you’ll notice that the Top 12 results show will see two contestants being eliminated. And since this episode is two hours long, I assume the remaining 10 contestants will perform that night, even though it doesn’t mention that in the schedule, otherwise why have a two-hour results show?
(Image courtesy of FOX)