Manila, Philippines – Jessica Sanchez is this “American Idol” season’s last woman standing.
The Filipino-Mexican belter moved to Top 3, sharing the thrilling limelight with Joshua Ledet and Phillip Phillips after Hollie Cavanagh was eliminated yesterday from the competition, which is down to two competing weeks.
Sanchez now matched Fil-Am Jasmine Trias’s third place finish back in season 3 (2004), won by Fantasia Barrino. But the 16-year-old power-piped divette still has a solid shot at becoming the first “Filipino” to win “Idol”.
Sanchez just came from another standing ovation-worthy take on “And I Am Telling You I’m Not Going” during performance round on Thursday. Worn by emotions after taking on the “Dreamgirls” song, a tearful Sanchez welcomed “Idol” judges’ praises that practically sealed her sail into the Top 3.
“This is a real journey,” said “Idol” judge Jennifer Lopez to the remaining finalists after Cavanagh was given the boot.
Lopez, who performed before the results were revealed, added: “This is not an easy show for these kids. For me, that’s why I feel so much when I’m watching you, all of you, not just Hollie.”
Ironically, Cavanagh, 18 performed Bonnie Rait’s “I Can’t Make You Love Me” for her last performance and judging from the “Idol” exit she got, she did fail to make America love her despite the overwhelming 70 million votes, announced by host Ryan Seacrest, all four finalists amassed for this round.
Because Sanchez made it to Top 3, she will be part of the hometown episodes rewarded contestants who are able to last this long in the contest. Sanchez, Ledet and Phillips will return to their respective hometowns of San Diego, California; Westlake, Luisiana; and Leesburg, Georgia in the next stage of the reality singing show. (Kaye Villagomez)