Thursday, February 19, 2004

Camile Velasco: She's made it to the next round of "American Idol"


The local singer overcame jitters
to triumph in her round


Saturday, Feb. 21, 2003

>> "American Idol" contestant Camile Velasco was told by judge Simon Cowell that she had the most potential out of the group that sang Tuesday night. A story on Page D1 yesterday incorrectly reported that Cowell said she had the most potential of all of this season's contestants.

The Honolulu Star-Bulletin strives to make its news report fair and accurate. If you have a question or comment about news coverage, call Editor Frank Bridgewater at 529-4791 or email him at

Camile Velasco, who overcame an uneven rendition of Brian McKnight's "One Last Day" while competing with seven others on "American Idol" Tuesday night, has advanced to the next round of the nation's biggest talent contest.

KHON/Fox promotions director Linda Brock announced yesterday that the 18-year-old Mauian was the top vote-getter in Tuesday's competition featuring the second group of eight out of 32 finalists picked during auditions nationwide.

Tuesday's challengers didn't turn out to be a particularly strong group, with most of the contestants succumbing to the pressure of singing before a TV audience of millions with sour notes and poor pitch.

After Velasco's wavering performance, the judges gave her some of the most positive feedback of the night, with the usually harsh Simon Cowell telling her she had the most potential of this season's contestants.

James West, Camile's stepfather, said from the family's Maui home, "The main thing I want to emphasize is to thank everyone in Hawaii and Maui for their support for Camile, and helping her get into the next round."

Velasco and the other winner of her group, Matthew Rogers, and the winners of the Feb. 10 competition, Fantasia Barrino and Diana Degarmo, continue on to the next round of eight.

Velasco's sister, and mother Rennie West, were in the small audience at the Tuesday taping. And waiting in the wings are Velasco's fellow Hawaii contestants, Jonah Moananu, who will sing next Tuesday, and Jasmine Trias, who gets her turn in the spotlight March 2.

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