‘American Idol’ 2021 Winners & Spoilers: Top 12 Live Results

American Idol

ABC/Eric McCandless

On the April 12, 2021 episode of ABC’s American Idollong-time host Ryan Seacrest announced the top 10 as were voted on the previous night by viewers of the show. This time around, the judges were able to participate in deciding who moves forward, giving the six contestants with the fewest number of votes a chance to earn their way back into the competition.

Unfortunately, the judge’s panel got switched up a bit ahead of the first live show. Luke Bryan announced on Twitter that he has been diagnosed with COVID-19, and he would not be attending the first live show.

Fortunately for long-time fans of American Idol, they got to see one of their favorite judges from the inception of the show; Paula Abdul was once again sitting on the judge’s panel, this time in Luke Bryan’s place.

WARNING: Spoilers for the Top 12 Live Reveal Episode of American Idol follow. Don’t read on if you don’t want to know who made it through to the Top 12. 

Read on below for a live recap of the results as they aired. If you’d rather just have a list of which contestants made it through and which were eliminated, scroll to the bottom for that.


American Idol 2021 Top 12 Live Recap

Ryan Seacrest welcomed viewers to the show for the first live episode of the year and explained that Luke Bryan would be resting at home for the episode while Paula Abdul stands in for him. Abdul said that she felt like she was visiting her little brother on a set somewhere without her other brother, Randy Jackson, or her grandfather, Simon Cowell.

Ryan Seacrest said that Wyatt Pike had to drop out of the competition and announced that Casey Bishop would be going through to the next round.

Casey Bishop took the stage to perform “House of the Rising Sun” by The Animals.

Colin Jamieson was announced to NOT be in America’s top 10, but he performed “Waves” by Dean Lewis in hopes of impressing the judges enough to earn their Wildcard spot. The judges adored his performance and praised him for growing so much in the past few weeks.

Next up, Deshawn Goncalves was announced to be safe from elimination, and he performed an up-tempo Stevie Wonder hit. Cassandra Coleman followed, also making it into the top 12, performing “‘Light On” by Maggie Rogers.

Caleb Kennedy was up next, and he said he was going to be performing an original song called “Nowhere.” Seacrest announced that he was safe, and he had a chance to perform his original song in victory – without a hat on, which is unusual for the young singer. Lionel Richie told him that he could finally see the artist in him, and he was impressed. Paula Abdul told him that she loved his mullet and that he was extremely talented.

Randy Jackson made a surprise appearance via Facetime and caught up with Paula Abdul.

Madison Watkins took the stage, and she did not make it into the top 10 as voted in by America. She performed “Hotline Bling” by Drake. The judges adored her performance and thanked her for her being like a “mama bear” to the other contestants behind the scenes.

The 15-year-old fan-favorite contestant Ava August took the stage next and learned that she was safe. She chose to perform “Love of My Life” by Queen for her next song.

Beane was the next contestant brought out to center stage, and he did not make it through via the vote. For his performance, he sang “Grow As We Go” by Ben Platt. The judges appreciated the performance and said that Beane was very talented.

Chayce Beckham was the next contestant voted into the top 12, and he performed “What Brings Life Also Kills” by Kolton Moore and The Clever Few. After that, it was time for Alyssa Wray to find out her fate. She performed “Greatest Love of All” by Whitney Houston for her song.

Alanis Sophia was up next, and she learned she did not make it through to the next round on America’s vote. For her chance to make it through, she performed “Heart Attack” by Demi Lovato.

The next contestant to take the stage was Willie Spence, and he learned that he had secured a spot in the top 10. He chose to perform Rihanna’s “Diamonds” for his victory song. That left only Grace Kinstler, Hunter Metts and Graham DeFranco waiting to know if they would be making it through.

After a short break, Grace Kinstler was invited to the center of the stage to see if she made it through via the vote. Seacrest informed her that she did make it through, and she performed “Dangerous Woman” by Ariana Grande.

The final two contestants left to learn their fate were Hunter Metts and Graham DeFranco. One would be given the news that he made it through to the top 10 while the other would have to serve for the Wildcard spot. Metts was the one who was voted through, and he celebrated by performing “I Can’t Make You Love Me” by Bonnie Raitt.

Graham DeFranco sang “Cover Me Up” by Jason Isbell to try to secure his spot in the top 12.


‘American Idol’ Top 12 & Who Was Eliminated

Here’s who made it through:

  • Casey Bishop
  • Deshawn Goncalves
  • Cassandra Coleman
  • Caleb Kennedy
  • Ava August
  • Chayce Beckham
  • Alyssa Wray
  • Willie Spence
  • Grace Kinstler
  • Hunter Metts

Here’s who did not earn enough votes and had to compete for the Wildcard spots:

  • Wyatt Pike (dropped out of the competition)
  • Colin Jamieson
  • Madison Watkins
  • Beane
  • Alanis Sophia
  • Graham DeFranco

After their deliberation, the judges decided to save both Madison Watkins and Beane.

That means these contestants were eliminated from the competition:

  • Wyatt Pike (dropped out of the competition)
  • Colin Jamieson
  • Alanis Sophia
  • Graham DeFranco

American Idol airs on Sundays and Mondays live coast-to-coast at 8 p.m. on ABC.

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