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February 3, 2011
'American Idol': Austin hooks 50 contestants

JudgingTX_him.jpg JudgingTX_her.jpg

By Kathy Morrison

After last night's show, did anyone get the impression that the "American Idol" producers are bored with these auditions? I did. Fifty gold tickets given out in Austin, Texas, yet there were few compelling stories, and even fewer compelling voices.

My favorite was Casey Abrams, 19, from Idylwild, Ca., with his Ray Charles song, "I Don't Need No Doctor." That cute cowboy, John Wayne Schulz, 23, will be one to watch, and the adorable choir couple from Arizona, Jacqueline Dunford, 22, and Nick Fink, 19 (pictured), were fun, but there wasn't much else.

Another crier, Holly Hardin, got through after singing a second song -- she won't last. And, is reporting Holly also was a previous contestant on "America's Got Talent." Go figure.

And Courtney Penry, 17, who dissolved in a puddle on meeting her dreamboat, Ryan Seacrest, definitely shouldn't have gotten a ticket to Hollywood (on a 2-1 vote, no less).

Tonight, it's on to Los Angeles for more auditions. Hollywood week can't come too soon. By our count here, more than 200 contestants are already booking plane tickets.


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