Kenedi Anderson — a singer “American Idol” judge Luke Bryan said might be the “biggest star” he’s ever seen on the show — has unexpectedly dropped out of the competition.

Utah singer on the ups and downs of ‘American Idol’

What happened to ‘American Idol’ contestant Kenedi Anderson?

Monday night’s episode of “American Idol” showed Anderson, a 17-year-old singer from Virginia who had made it to the show’s Top 24, singing Christina Perri’s “Human.” But after the performance, host Ryan Seacrest revealed that Anderson was no longer in the competition.

  • “You might have noticed that there was no voting information during Kenedi’s performance just now,” he said, according to Deadline. “Since we taped these shows in Hawaii earlier, Kenedi has decided to withdraw from our show for personal reasons. We send her well wishes.”

After the announcement, Anderson — whose “American Idol” audition has 5 million views on YouTube — shared more about her decision to leave the competition.

  • “This has been one of the hardest decisions I’ve ever had to make, but I know it’s necessary,” the 17-year-old singer wrote on Instagram. “I’m so grateful to ‘American Idol,’ the judges, the producers, the amazing contestants, and all the fans who have supported me. Thank you for giving me such an amazing opportunity to share my voice, chase my dreams, feel so much joy and happiness doing what I love, and make lifelong friends along the way.”

A look at Kenedi Anderson’s run on ‘American Idol’

Anderson immediately won over “Idol” judges Bryan, Katy Perry and Lionel Richie with her performance of Lady Gaga’s “Applause,” which also featured her playing the piano.

  • “My head is spinning,” Bryan said after the performance, later adding that he believed Anderson might be the “biggest star” the judges had ever seen on the show, the Deseret News reported.
  • “I don’t know how you haven’t been recruited yet,” Perry added. 
  • “You’ve answered our prayers,” concluded Richie, who said the young singer could be the next best thing in the music industry. 

The judges went on to award Anderson a Platinum ticket — a special ticket only given to three singers this season. The ticket allowed these three contestants to skip the first part of the Hollywood round and avoid a part of the elimination process.

  • “Some people walk out and they’re stars, they have all the boxes ticked: stage presence, delivery, their sound, their style,” Richie said, according to The Wrap. “They have it all there so that when they open their mouths you know exactly who they are as artists. It just rings that bell. And when that happens you just give them the platinum ticket as fast as you can.”

During her time on the show, Anderson also performed Bill Withers’ “Lean on Me” — a duet she sang with contestant Jordan Chase — and Bruno Mars’ “Talking to the Moon,” Entertainment Weekly reported.

This isn’t the first time a singer on ‘American Idol’ has dropped out

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Anderson’s departure mirrors a moment from this past season of “American Idol” when singer-songwriter Wyatt Pike from Park City, Utah, unexpectedly dropped out of the competition after reaching the top 12.

At the time, an “American Idol” spokesperson told the Deseret News that Pike “could not continue due to personal reasons.”

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Wyatt Pike unexpectedly left ‘American Idol.’ Here’s what this Utah ‘Idol’ singer said about it

Pike, who has since relocated to Los Angeles and has released new music, recently opened up about his decision to leave “American Idol.”

  • “At the end of the day, competitive music on reality TV, I discovered, is not my thing,” Pike told Park Record earlier this year. “As many great things I learned and gained from it, all kinds of stress and the nine yards associated with that just became too much.”

Pike told KPCW he’s interested in sharing more of his experience on “American Idol” through his music. The singer-songwriter returns to Utah to perform at Salt Lake City’s Kilby Court on May 20.

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