Lauren Spencer-Smith gave American Idol viewers a view of Sproat Lake when she performed from her home town of Port Alberni on April 26. (Photo courtesy ABC Network)

Lauren Spencer-Smith gave American Idol viewers a view of Sproat Lake when she performed from her home town of Port Alberni on April 26. (Photo courtesy ABC Network)

Vancouver Island teen singer looks back on ‘American Idol’ experience

Lauren Spencer-Smith reached Top 20, made lifelong friendships and improved her skills

Lauren Spencer-Smith’s American Idol journey may be over, but the teenage singer said she made friends and memories along the way that will stay with her forever.

On Sunday the votes were counted as fans selected which contestants would advance from the Top 20 to the Top 10. Although Spencer-Smith, who hails from Port Alberni and lives in Nanaimo, was among those who did not make the cut, she still sees the silver lining.

“I think it’s such an accomplishment for all of us in the Top 20 and I think we were happy either way because we had made it far,” she said. “We made it to the Top 20, we made so many friendships and met so many amazing people that I think there’s just so much positive to take away from it.”

Spencer-Smith said she didn’t expect she would make it so far into the competition and attributes her success to her demonstrating growth and improvement after every round. She said she’s become a better singer and performer and that the judges and audience took notice.

“I used to kind of just stand there and sing and then throughout the show I became really comfortable onstage,” she said. “But I also think my vocal ability has grown just from being around other singers and learning what they do with their voice.”

She said judges Lionel Richie, Katy Perry and Luke Bryan gave helpful feedback and are “really great people.”

“All of them are super sweet and kind. They really want us to be the best version of ourselves and give us criticism to help us and praise when we did well,” she said.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the contestants looking to make it into the Top 10 performed from home. In her performance, Spencer-Smith made an impression not just with her rendition of Momma Knows Best by pop singer Jessie J, but with the view of Sproat Lake from her father’s home in Port Alberni.

Spencer-Smith said she was in a virtual call with the American Idol team showing them around the house looking for a place for her to sing when they got a look out the window.

“They were like, ‘Wait, is that a lake outside?’ and they were like, ‘Oh my goodness we need to do this outside’ and everyone just kind of fell in love with the view,” she said, adding that she’s happy she got to show off the B.C. landscape.

On social media, Spencer-Smith’s fans expressed their displeasure that the performance didn’t pull her through to the next round. She said she’s grateful to have had such an enthusiastic group cheering her on.

“I love my fans to pieces. The support that they give me is just crazy and so overwhelming because they’re just full of love and full of support for me,” she said. “Nothing’s possible without them.”

While she said she’ll remember everything about her American Idol experience, Spencer-Smith said her favourite part was the week the Top 40 spent in Hawaii, which she said is now her “favourite place.”

“That was when everyone really met their best friends on the show and everyone connected so well and we all just got to basically be on a big vacation together and everyone just moulded into family and became so close…” she said. “I didn’t even realize when I went into the show that I was going to be making so many friendships that are going to last a lifetime, but I really did.”

RELATED: Nanaimo teen singer passes American Idol audition

RELATED: Nanaimo’s Lauren Spencer-Smith advances to American Idol top 20



arts@nanaimobulletin.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Music

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Hardeep Singh Sahota, the director of Royal Academy of Bhangra in Surrey, says there’s lots of confusion around the temporary closure of dance studios. He’s pictured in the empty studio, which shows spaced out dance areas, on Thursday, Nov. 26, 2020. (Photo: Lauren Collins)
‘Temporary’ closure causing confusion for Surrey dance studio

Bhangra academy director says studios need more guidance from healh authorities

Despite rumours, Surrey RCMP say they are not issuing tickets to people if they are driving in a vehicle with others from a different household. (File photo)
Rumours of vehicle-occupant address checks untrue, say Surrey RCMP

COVID-19 enforcement about education, says Cpl. Joanie Sidhu

FILE PHOTO - Surrey Mayor Doug McCallum speaks at a press conference about the provincial government approving the city’s municipal police transition plan Thursday (Aug. 22, 2019). He is joined by councillors (from left) Mandeep Nagra, Allison Patton and Doug Elford. (File photo: Lauren Collins)
LETTER: Surrey’s budget is despicable

Reader says Safe Surrey is going to bankrupt residents

B.C.’s parliament buildings in Victoria. (Photo: Tom Fletcher)
Surrey gets two cabinet ministers, a parliamentary secretary and government whip

Premier John Horgan’s NDP MLAs were sworn in on Tuesday and the cabinet was revealed Thursday afternoon

(Photo: Amy Reid)
VIDEO: 2020 Community Leader Awards recognize Surrey’s unsung heroes

They don’t often receive recognition and don’t necessarily have a high profile in the community

Alexandre Bissonnette, who pleaded guilty to a mass shooting at a Quebec City mosque, arrives at the courthouse in Quebec City on February 21, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Mathieu Belanger - POOL
Court strikes down consecutive life sentences; mosque shooter has prison term cut

The decision was appealed by both the defence and the Crown

Gold medallists in the ice dance, free dance figure skating Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir, of Canada, pose during their medals ceremony at the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea, Tuesday, Feb. 20, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Charlie Riedel
Olympic champions Virtue, Moir and Tewksbury among 114 Order of Canada inductees

Moir and Virtue catapulted to national stardom with their gold-medal performances at the Winter Olympics in 2018

Shoppers line up in front of a shop on Montreal’s Saint-Catherine Street in search of Black Friday deals in Montreal, Friday, Nov. 27, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson
Black Friday shopping in a pandemic: COVID-19 closes some stores, sales move online

Eric Morris, head of retail at Google Canada, says e-commerce in Canada has doubled during the pandemic.

Chilliwack school board trustee Barry Neufeld is taking heat over using a ableist slur to refer to three Black Press employees. (Paul Henderson/ Progress file)
BC School Trustees Association president keeps heat on Chilliwack Trustee Barry Neufeld

In a news release, Stephanie Higginson called on voters to take careful note of Neufeld’s behaviour

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good
Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

School District 27 announced the first confirmed case of COVID-19 this week (Nov. 23) at Lake City Secondary School Williams Lake campus. (Angie Mindus photo - Williams Lake Tribune)
Entire gym class at northern B.C. high school isolating after confirmed COVID case

Contact tracing by Interior Health led to the quarantine

Arthur Topham has been sentenced to one month of house arrest and three years of probation after breaching the terms of his probation. Topham was convicted of promoting hate against Jewish people in 2015. (Photo submitted)
Quesnel man convicted for anti-Semitic website sentenced to house arrest for probation breach

Arthur Topham was convicted of breaching probation following his 2017 sentence for promoting hatred

Langley School District's board office. (Langley Advance Times files)
‘Sick Out’ aims to pressure B.C. schools over masks, class sizes

Parents from Langley and Surrey are worried about COVID safety in classrooms

Most Read