In 2005 American Idol ran their seventh season. They had no idea who was going to be trying out for this season, and for those of us who have watched American Idol auditions, we know that, to say the least, there are quite a few characters who try out for this world-wide known show. The American Idol Judges were not prepared for their last audition to be one of the best. Brooke White, age 24, walked into the audition room and immediately captured the judge’s attention.
Randy Jackson, Paula Abdul, and Simon Cowell, asked Brooke to tell them something unique about herself. Without hesitating she told them that she had never seen an R-rated movie. This took the judges by surprise. When asked why, Brooke replied, “It made sense to my life, so I stuck with it. Starting with no R-rated movies led me to no drinking, no smoking, etc.”
Brooke White is a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and from the very beginning of her journey with American Idol, her religious values were recognized and upheld. Brooke auditioned with the song “Like a Star” by Corinne Bailey Rae. When finished, Randy was the first to speak, “I like you, there’s something sorta pure, I like that.”
American Idol Audition- The Start of a Dream Come True
Simon, well known for his critical and often rude remarks to contestants, followed Randy’s approval by saying, “You are sincere and have a nice voice, a little bit worthy, but we can bring you over to the dark side.” Brooke smiled and with a sweet laugh replied, “I dare you.” After a unanimous yes, she was allotted her rightful golden ticket of acceptance into American Idol.
During the season all of Brookes performances were very nice and feel-good songs, such as “Every Breath You Take,” “Here Comes The Sun,” “You Must Love Me,” “Let It Be,” “I’m A Believer,” “You’ve Got A Friend In Me,” “Hero,” “Beautiful,” and much more
Love of Music From a Young Age
In an interview with Brooke’s parents, her mother says, “I remember after we got Brooke’s grandmother’s piano, I heard someone playing. I walked into the room and saw that it was Brooke.” Brooke’s mother was blown away seeing her daughter moving her instinctively musical fingers across the keyboard. “Where did you hear this song?” Her mother asked. Brooke replied that it was a song she had just heard on a T.V. show and she liked it, so she decided to play it.
“My fingers just knew what to play… It’s pretty much just intuitive” Brooke stated reflecting back on this experience. At the age of seven she taught herself to play by ear, and has continued to do so ever since. In multiple of her performances on American Idol, she accompanied herself while singing her song of choice. This had a very powerful impact on the judges, and gained a lot of respect from the audience.
The Journey of the Show
Brooke was a finalist on American Idol, despite some obstacles and humiliating moments during the season. More than once, Brooke messed up at the beginning of one of her songs. I can only imagine the embarrassment I would feel knowing that I had messed up in front of thousands in the audience and millions more viewing me live on T.V., yet for Brooke, this set-back wasn’t really a set-back at all.
One time after a mistake, she said a short “I’m sorry”, and went right back into singing and rocked her song. Another time when she missed the first note of a song she was singing while accompanying herself on the piano, she didn’t even hesitate and started over again, and once again blew the audience and judges away. After one of her performances where she made a small mistake, the judges said, “It is very brave and very real to start out, realize you didn’t do it right, and start again”. In life, how often do we start something and realize we aren’t doing it the right way, and have to build up the courage to start again?
Brooke is a wonderful role model of dedication and courage, and believing in yourself that even after a mistake, you can start again and make it right. Simon Cowell approached Brooke once at a house party and told her, “Listen Brooke, you have got to do what you want to do and fight for it, and don’t let anyone tell you no.” Towards the end of the season, Brooke was interviewed and spoke out to the world, “It’s probably not a secret that I struggled with my own confidence, but I’m stronger than I thought I was, and that’s a great thing to get from this.” By saying “this,” Brooke is referring to her experience with American Idol.
The 15th and Final Season of American Idol
Brooke White, after her journey with American Idol, has been very successful. With multiple albums, popular singles, and songs making it high up on the list of the Top 100, she has never given up on her passion and dreams. Brooke was invited back as an Alumni of American Idol to share her story, reflecting on some of the most humiliating yet infamous Idol moment’s ever- and telling of how she was able to respond with poise, grace, and comicality. These reflections of course refer to the multiple occasions of her messing up during songs, yet pushing forward.
Brooke says, “To this day when a stranger stops me in Target, or when a flight attendant recognizes the sound of my voice, they almost always say the same thing: ‘My favorite moment is when you stopped and started over,’ or ‘Wow, that was so brave of you,’ or even ‘That was very professional.’ This makes me laugh.”
Brooke’s Life Today
In 2012, 4 years after Brooke’s experience with American Idol, she had her first child, a daughter named London. She is now a full time mother and focusing her time and effort into her family, but still keeps her fingers in music. We can expect more top hits and popular songs from Brooke in the future.