Not only will the First Annual East Hampton TV Festival (Monday, July 22 and Tuesday, July 23) at Guild Hall in East Hampton showcase innovative and new TV programming and panels with industry veterans, the VIP Opening Reception and Closing Award Ceremony and Reception will feature performances from singer-songwriter and actor Ameliarose Allen, who appeared on Season 2 of ABC’s American Idol.
We recently caught up with Allen to learn about her American Idol journey and more.
The American Idol casting team sought you out. What was your reaction when they reached out?
AR: Honestly, I wasn’t really sure what I was getting myself into. I obviously was extremely flattered and honored to have been sought out by the casting directors. But I was too young the first time that they reached out to me. So they were like, come back when you’re 16, please. So then I did the following, I guess it was two years maybe after that.
I don’t usually watch the singing shows that much. I wasn’t really sure at all what was going to happen. Just kind of going in on a whim. I honestly didn’t think I was going to get as far as I did. I was just kind of there for the ride, you know?
Tell us a little bit about your song selection for the interviews.
AR: For the producer rounds I sang Liability by Lorde. I sang an original called Drown. And that’s the same songs I did for the judges, the celebrity judge audition. Then from there was the first like kind of solo rounds, which is called the line of ten. Basically, that’s when everyone goes out in groups of ten, and they pick from those ten who they want to continue with the competition. So for that, I sang Strange Bird by Birdy. And I made it past that round, then it was group rounds, and group rounds, honestly, it’s so difficult, and I am really grateful that I made it through. We sang We Don’t Talk Anymore by Charlie Puth, and I don’t really listen to too much straight pop music. So I didn’t know the song at all. And you only have like one night to learn it, not even a couple of hours to learn all of the songs and you’re in a group. So you have to have harmonies and they wanted you to have choreography, it was crazy. And I didn’t know the song at all. So I get up on the stage. And everyone takes their turns singing the verse, and then we all would come in on the chorus together with one person soloing each time. And it got to my turn to sing the verse and I forgot the words 100 percent, which is crazy because I wrote the words down on my arm. But I was like, no, I’m not going to look down because I didn’t want it to be obvious that I wrote it down. So I didn’t look at them. I just went straight for the chorus because it was the only part I could remember. I’m really shocked I made it past that. People that did remember the words didn’t get put through and it’s just so sad. But anyway, so I made it through that. And then the last round was the solo rounds. And for that I sang an original of mine called Relax, which is going to be released fairly soon. I just finished the recording process with that. And then that was when they cut for the top 40. So I made it to the top 68.
When you auditioned, Lionel Richie, Katy Perry and Luke Bryan all wanted you to go to Hollywood. Were you expecting that?
AR: No, not at all. We were there for 12 hours, maybe more. I was the last audition in New York. I had been there for so long that I was sure that they had either run out of golden tickets or had seen everyone they wanted to be on the show already. So by the time it got to me, I was just kind of like, you know what, this is just such an amazing opportunity just to perform in front of them. And then when they all gave me three yeses, I was completely shocked.
Oh, this is actually a funny little story. So before I got the yeses, and the golden ticket and everything, I walked into the room, and I met the judges for the first time. And Katy Perry stood up. And she said, “Here’s a golden ticket. You’re going to Hollywood” because she was so tired. And my eyes were so wide. And I was like, “What?!?” And then she said, “Just kidding. I hope you’re good.” But I ended up getting the three yeses, but it was just like that didn’t put any pressure on me… Not at all…
What was your biggest takeaway from being on American Idol?
AR: I think growing up in a small town, going to relatively small schools. I haven’t really had the opportunity to be around a bunch of other really amazing musicians, singers, songwriters even. And so being on American Idol, definitely, in an amazing way, really opened my eyes to see how much talent there really is and how incredible it was to be even considered as talented as these other people around me. And making friends, of course, I actually just got back from California, because me and the group members from my group round and one other kid, we all went to California to hang out. It’s just so crazy the bonds you make with the people on these shows. It’s really amazing.
Will any of them be joining you for Wonderama‘s Summer Jam “Count Me In” Concert at Hofstra on July 25?
AR: No, I don’t think so. They all live really far away – San Diego, Seattle, Kentucky.
In addition to performing during the concert, you’ll be joining Wonderama as a correspondent. Tell us a little bit about that.
AR: I’m super excited to be joining as a correspondent. We met with the Wonderama team and they were just really amazing. I’m just really, really grateful to have the opportunity to work with them. I’m excited for everything that’s to come.
What are you working on at the moment?
AR: I have one single that could be on the way very soon. It’s called Uneven. I’ve put all my hard work and effort into everything – from the artwork, to the producing to the singing to the editing and all the stuff. It’s just been such a time. I have a song called Relax that will be probably released for some kind of EP/album. I have a couple of music videos in the works. Just a lot of stuff.
You’ll be headlining the first annual East Hampton TV festivals opening and closing nights. Tell us a little bit about that.
AR: I recently just signed with Andreadis Talent. They’re all the credit to this. I can’t wait to see all the people and producers and all that kind of stuff, directors. I want to do more acting. I want to get into film and TV a little bit more because I used to do it when I was younger. But I think that it’s something that I would definitely be interested in doing again.
Do you have a setlist for that yet?
AR: Yes, I believe it’s three songs. I’m playing Lover, You Should’ve Come Over by Jeff Buckley, an original of mine called Affinity and then also playing an original called Relax, which is the one that will probably be released in a couple months.
Will this be your first time performing in the Hamptons?
AR: Yes. First time in the Hamptons. My mom is from Long Island, but I never been to the Hamptons before. I’m very excited. I’ve heard it’s absolutely beautiful. I’ve heard it’s where the movie stars go.
Is there anything else you’d like to add?
AR: My Instagram is @ameliarose.allen. I’m so excited for the show!
Guild Hall is located at 158 Main Street in East Hampton. For more information, visit ehtvf.com.