We got to meet David Leathers Jr. on that episode. We did not get to hear from 16-year-old Ariel Sprague, who sings in the very same school choir.
Monique Butler-Woodard, director of choral activities, at Seventy-First High School, told the Fayetteville Observer that Sprague is the more reserved of the two.
“She’s very small, but has this beautiful voice that can fill a room,” Butler-Woodard told the newspaper.
And she certainly seems personable enough in her golden ticket interview.
She recalls meeting Jennifer Hudson at an Idol summer tour concert when she was just 8 years old.
“She told me, when I got of age, ‘You have to try out for Idol.’ Here I am,” Ariel says.
As for her first vocal performance, that came two years earlier, singing in front of a crowd of about 100 at a wedding.
Ariel says it “felt really good” and that she felt on home on stage.
In fact, it’s her comfort on stage that she thinks might help set her apart from some of her contemporaries on Idol. She says she’s “all over the place” when she performs.
“I am a performer. I love to entertain. I can sing. I think all those things bunch up into one great American Idol,” she says, with a smile that nevertheless seems quite humble. “Hopefully, everyone will think so.”
Here are two performances from Ariel. Follow this link and you’ll find her audition for the North Carolina “Rip the Hallways” competition.