American Idol comes to Main Street Station

The crowd of singers gathered on the front steps of Main Street Station to get their shot at being the next American Idol. Photo by Destiny Hall-Harper.

When the nationwide search ends and live tapings begin, the famous question, “Who will be the next American Idol?” may be answered by someone from the Richmond area.

During the early morning of Sept. 3, hopefuls lined the steps of Main Street Station, awaiting their ticket to perform in front of American Idol producers for the preliminary round of auditions.

Registration began at 7 a.m. — with some people lining up several hours earlier — and the contestants moved into the building at 8 a.m. as auditions began.

The crowd was in the hundreds, covering the entire front steps of the building.

Auditioner Kelly Adam, a VCU freshman double majoring in music and environmental studies, was one of the hundreds waiting their turn.

“I want to be a famous musician,” Adam said. “Shows like this give artists a chance to show talent that otherwise wouldn’t be seen.”

Adam performed with her guitar and sang — she said she hoped to wow professionals and urge them to invest in her as an artist.

“Major producers and labels don’t know about me,” Adam said. “This could give me the exposure I need.”

One American Idol senior supervising producer, Patrick Lynn, said the number of people being selected for the show is not predetermined.

“We are going to take whoever we think would be good for the show and send them on to the next round,” he said.

The contestants were filmed by camera crews cheering as the tour bus moved past them. Certain eager acts could be seen with guitars, keyboards, bases and a variety of other instruments.

“The line this morning was pretty big,” Lynn said, noting that he could not even see the back of the crowd from the building. “It’s a holiday, so everyone has the day off.”

Lynn said the auditions that are good enough for the live tapings will be turned over to the executive producer for possible entrance onto the show.

Destiny Hall-Harper, Contributing Writer

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