my american idol backstage pass and why you should watch season xiii

I cannot think of a better way to end my 2013 (besides a threesome with Jimmy Fallon & Justin Timberlake, and by threesome I mean a 3-way game of Yahtzee of course), than to end it on the American Idol stage. And that, my friends, is what I did.

This is me, last week, backstage at American Idol.

#Idoltweethearts American Idol Season XIIILook at my jazz hands in full effect!

Though I wasn’t a contestant, I still had the time of my life as an official #IdolSponsoredVIP, which basically means that I had an all-expense-paid trip up to the Land of Angels and was granted, along with 17 other Idol tweet hearts, backstage passes and a full tour of the Dolby theater. To top off the tour, we were able to sit through some of the infamous Group Rounds of Hollywood Week auditions, which fully lived up to my expectations.

As an avid fan of American Idol since the Justin & Kelly days, I was pretty much jigging out of my skin the entire time I was there, geeking out like crazy, over little things like:

The American Idol sign,

Season 13 of American Ido 2014

the Judges’ green rooms,

Backstage tour at American Idol  J Lo's Green Room

the contestants’ rehearsal room,

Rehearsal space for American Idol contestants Hollywood Week

and of course, the area where they come out of the audition to tell Ryan and their families if they’ve made it to the next round. This is my best “I’m going to Hollywood” face:

#Idol Hollywood Week Auditions

Then I almost peed my pants a little when Harry Connick Jr. walked into the room after our lunch, shook all of our hands, posed for photos and sat down for an impromptu Q & A.

Posing with Harry Connick Jr. backstage at American Idol

(He looked a little excited to meet me too).

Everything that you’d imagine about the hunky crooner to be true is. He was charming, intelligent, witty and completely endearing. He is a PERFECT fit for the judge’s panel. He’s harsh without being mean (like Simon tended to be), and he has constructive, educated criticisms for the contestants.

Check out my video above with my reasons for why American Idol Season XIII is going to be the best season yet, and why you will definitely want to watch. For my friends who fell off the Idol train when Simon left, or when Daughtry was kicked off, or when Mariah & Nicki joined the team, I really think you should give it another try. I promise you won’t be disappointed. And for those of you who have never watched the show (like you, Laura), please give it a try.

Big kudos the entire team at American Idol for the outstanding production value and the family values you’ve put towards this season. It’s entertaining and inspiring for the whole fam!

And thanks to my fellow Idol TweetHearts who are a rad bunch of ladies who don’t make me feel so crazy for being such an Idol junkie. Follow our tweets with hashtag #IdolTweetHearts throughout the season for updates.


Disclosure: I was treated to an almost-all-expenses paid trip to LA by the American Idol team to see the premiere episode and experience some of Hollywood Week. All opinions are my own. I’m an Idol freak!

Uh whoa whoa  . . .



  1. 1
    Nicole says:

    This? Is aces. So happy for you and I cannot wait to watch!

  2. 2
    Chelsea says:

    I am soooo jealous!! Can’t wait to watch!! XOXO

  3. 3
    Danielle says:

    Looks like Santa came a little early! So glad you were able to have this awesome once-in-a-lifetime experience. Well deserved!

    • Mary says:

      Thanks, Danielle! It was definitely a once in a lifetime trip and being such an Idol fan, I was in heaven the whole time. : )

  4. 4
  5. 5
    BriGeeski says:

    What?! So fun! I will have to tune in to American Idol this year.

  6. 6

    Super cool! I haven’t watched in YEARS, but this may be just what I need. xo

  7. 7
    Laurie Houston says:

    Wow this is so exciting! I am going to watch for sure and I know it will be an amazing season.
    Can’t wait to hear more details….
    Love you!

  8. 8
    Julie says:

    I had such an amazing time with you & all the Idol Tweethearts! Can’t wait for the new season to start!

  9. 9
    Mariana Salerno says:

    This is soooo great!! Connecting with JLo AND meeting hunky Harry?! Fab. I think you should have rhymed Harry with Mary though.

  10. 10

    I might have to jump back on the AI bandwagon now!

  11. 11
    Hayley says:

    You had me at Harry! I’m in! So fantabulous! Can NOT wait!!!

  12. 12
    Laura says:

    You are my pop culture go-to girl and if you say it’s gonna be good, then I know it’ll be good! Alright, I’m in!

  13. 13
    Laura says:

    By the way I watched SNL last Sat, for the first time in years…… because you told me to!

  14. 14

    What an awesome cool thing to go behind the scenes for…. fan-effing-tastic!

  15. 15
    Suzette says:

    Oh, Mary! Knowing what a die-hard fan you are of these talent shows makes me happy for you. I’ve never been a fan of any of them (except for DWTS in the beginning), so thanks for sharing your enthusiasm — I may just watch next season!

  16. 16

    I knew I liked you sis! I am still mad Daughtry was voted off early. But he’s doing okay and in our lives, thank God!

    Great read and see you soon fellow #idoltweetheart!

    Happy Kids, Inc

  17. 17

    This is so awesome Mary! I am so happy you got to have this amazing experience! I’m excited to watch this season!!!

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