IMPORTANT NOTE: These are the archived stories for Belmont News & Achievements prior to June 26, 2023. To see current stories, click here.

HomeArts & CultureMusic Alumna Emma Kleinberg Scores Ticket to Hollywood on 'American Idol'

Music Alumna Emma Kleinberg Scores Ticket to Hollywood on ‘American Idol’

Another Belmont performance on American Idol, and one more ticket to Hollywood!

Last night Emma Kleinberg, a December 2018 commercial voice graduate from Bel Air, Maryland, appeared on the show, sharing her a story of her family’s personal struggles and impressing the judges with a soulful rendition of Allen Stone song “American Privilege.” Luke Bryan noted, “You cannot showcase yourself any better in my opinion.”

Kleinberg will join fellow alum Kason Lester and current Belmont student Walker Burroughs in the Hollywood round, which begins airing on ABC March 24.

March 7, 2019

Kason Lester on American Idol2017 music business graduate Kason Lester appeared on the March 6 episode, scoring major points with the judges on both his performance of Chris Janson song “Holdin’ Her” and a gift from his family’s farm. Perry noted her confidence that Lester could make the top 10 on the show, remarking, “I think you got a great sound in your voice.” Lester will join Belmont student Walker Burroughs in the Hollywood round, which begins airing on ABC March 24.

March 4, 2019

Music Education Major Walker Burroughs Kicks Off New Season of ‘American Idol’

Season 17 of ABC hit show “American Idol” kicked off last night with a decidedly Belmont flavor. Opening the show with the very first audition of the night was 20-year-old Walker Burroughs, a Birmingham native and sophomore music education major at Belmont.

Walker Burroughs on 'American Idol'While only two judges need to approve for a contestant to move on to the next round, Burroughs scored high with all three as acclaimed artists Lionel Richie, Katy Perry and Luke Bryan unanimously expressed support of Burrough’s performance of “Love Like This,” a Ben Rector tune. Richie commented, “Hail to Belmont!” while Perry noted, “That is so natural and cool and effortless… I think you’re Top 10 material.”

Burroughs was even invited to play another song, a cover of Richie’s classic “Hello.” He will next appear during the “American Idol” Hollywood round, which is scheduled to air on ABC March 24 and 25.

Stay tuned in the coming weeks as this is a developing story that will be updated as auditions from other Belmont students and alumni air. Look for 2017 music business graduate Kason Lester on the March 6 episode.

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