We had a great time at Hollywood Studios! We first went to Toy Story Mania because c'mon, let's face it, it is everyone's favorite ride :)
We then went on the Rockin' Roller Coaster, got an extra set of Fast Passes so Ethan could go on again and again! (We found out later found out he saw a family waiting for their Fast Pass time and so he gave them the rest of ours! So sweet!).
While Ethan was doing that, Carlie and Aaron went and auditioned for the American Idol Experience! It was pretty neat!
They both had a 1st audition where they went to a judge and sang 30 seconds of whatever they wanted to. They both came out with a ticket saying they could make it to the next round! Woo Hoo! They were then given an iPod, headphones and a list of songs they could pick from on a Karaoke track list. They had to pick 2 songs and they would sing those demos for the next final and lead producer judge. Here they are practicing:
Carlie went in first and we could hear her outside the door and she sounded great but sadly she came out a little later saying that they were not going to move her on. Aaron then went in (and I went in as his manager) and the Producer had him stand in front of a sheet which projected his image onto monitor so the Producer could see what he would look like on stage. Aaron sang "Sway" by Michael Buble! (So grateful that song was on the list). When he was done the Producer said it was good but he needed to start off stronger and let him try again and then he said, "Congrats! You made it on to the show!" And then Ryan Seacrest came on the TV congratulating him! He got a pass to wear and was told he would be performing at the 5:00 show and to be there an hour early for hair and makeup and a run through. We also got special tickets to get in early and get good seats! So proud!
Aaron was then taken by one of the camera producer ladies and he was filmed for 20 minutes doing lots of things. They had him pretend like he was practicing his song to go into his audition, pretending to come out and so excited about it, they interviewed him outside and had him dance, they had him take pictures with Carrie Underwood, his favorite American Idol. Haha. (When they asked him his favorite American Idol he looked at me and I said, "I don't know, Carrie Underwood?" Later he said, "I probably shouldn't tell them that I have never seen an episode before, should I?" Haha). His interviews were great!
We then went to Beauty and the Beast, grabbed some lunch, went and went and saw the Indiana Jones show. Lastly, we tried to go ride the "Backlot Tour" before Aaron had to get back for the show. We stood in line for 20 minutes and weaved though all the lines and right before we loaded on to the trams it started a huge downpour and we were not able to ride it. Aaron then headed to his show while the rest rode Star Tours.
We got in early for Aaron's show and were placed in a certain spot which was good for lighting and so the camera would know where we were. We then watched him come on stage with the other competitors getting some last minute information before their run-through.
Aaron then did his run-through and it was so neat! With each minus track there is a set stage que and so as the music started going the lights came down and some bright red lights started to go and the back of the stage lit up! He also had a sensor attached to the back of his shirt and so wherever he moved the lights followed him! His warm-up was great!
Sadly we were told that we couldn't take any video of the show :( But...that didn't stop me! I just held my camera in my lap and faced it towards the big screen and so it isn't super clear but you can hear and see kind of whats going on! (I will post those at a later date).
Then the show began!
That is not Aaron below...just a former winner but it is presenting his name for the show that night!
They came out and crowd went wild!
Aaron was 2nd! They talked with him a little before he sang and they showed his amazing video! A definite crowd favorite!
The actual performance:
Trying to win over the ladies in the audience:
He then got critiqued by the judges. First lady loved him and said he needs to do something with his talent, especially being at BYU. Second lady said he made her swoon and she is willing to look over his sandals! The third judge (Simon-esqe) said that he was too sweet and that it was like he was selling toothpaste or something :) The whole audience boo-ed him!
Vote for Aaron, #2!
After they brought everyone back out and they reviewed their performances on the big screen.
They brought them out to the stage and reviewed what each of the judges said about their performances and Aaron played it up by pretending to brush his teeth and smile!
Everyone then voted on their key pad on their chair.
And the winner is...AARON BUTLER!
They interviewed Aaron afterwards and he said, "It was exhilarating! Thanks, (looks at the audience) I couldn't have done it without you!" Haha.
Aaron then signed some autographs for some of his biggest fans after the show :)
Aaron then had only about 30 minutes before he had to get back for the finale prep and so Mom and I went on the Great Movie Ride, Carlie and Ethan went to Tower of Terror and Dad and Aaron hung out.
The same thing happened at the Finale. We got there early, watched the run through and this time there were 5 contestants instead of 3 (the winners from all the previous shows). The whole place was packed (about 800 people) and then the screen above also projected it to those in the park who couldn't get into the show!
Aaron was chosen to go first (a disadvantage if you ask me). This time they didn't show his video they just talked to him for about 20 seconds beforehand.
He sang great! And really connected to the audience!
Everyone was really really good! It was great show to watch because there was such a variety of people and talent. They then brought everyone back on to the stage and went through their performances and numbers one more time.
That's me saying on the big screen saying, vote for #1!
Then the results. Aaron and the girl on the right were both the first to go. We were sad but so happy that he did so well and made it so far! Everyone was really great!
The tall man in the blue won and confetti came down and it was a party! The girl below though was amazing and she had come to that park that day just to audition and hopefully win because if you do win you get a ticket that allows you to go straight to the judges when the auditions come around. The man who won was past the age limit to audition and so he was sweet enough to give her his ticket! She was crying she was so happy!
We then used Carlie's Fast Pass tickets that she got for auditioning to bypass the 90 minute wait at Toy Story Mania and ride it one last time! A couple went to Tower of Terror while the other half stood in line for Ariel's show :) We then finished with a dance party in the plaza!
It was a great end to a great day! Way to go Aaron! We are sure proud of you!