American Idol 2023 Recap: Top 26 Perform in Hawaii Part 2

American Idol 2023 Recap: Night tow of the Top 26 performance round at Disney Aulani in Hawaii. Fans vote ahead of the Top 20 reveal.

American Idol 2023 Recap Top 26 Perform in Hawaii for Your Votes (Part 2)

American Idol 2023 Recap Top 26 Perform at Disney Aulani Resort in Hawaii for YOUR Votes – Season 21 Top 26 perform in front of judges Lionel Richie, Katy Perry and Luke Bryan along with host Ryan Seacrest as they finish the round in part 2 at the Disney Aulani Resort in Hawaii.

On night two, the remaining thirteen contestants will be mentored by Noah Cyrus. Public voting continues as fans can choose their favorites and determine the Top 20, which will be unveiled on next Sunday’s (April 23) Top 20 episode. (Read last night’s Recap)

Vote at, via the American Idol app or SMS Text.

How to Vote on American Idol 2023: Everything You Need to Know

American Idol 2023: Full Season 21 Schedule
American Idol 2023 Spoilers: Top 26 Celebrity Mentors, Song Picks
American Idol 2023: Top 26 Contestant Photo Gallery Night 1 and 2

Reminder: Comments on this post are a SPOILER FREE ZONE. Do not spoil outcomes. Keep spoiler discussion confined to specific spoiler posts.

Noah addresses the group. She watched all their audition tapes. She’s very excited to get to work!

Elijah McCormick – Good Vibes by Chris Janson

Noah concentrates on Elijah’s performance. He confesses that he can’t move as much after his horrific car accident a few years ago. He gets the crowd going with a few shout outs. This is a different kind of performance for Elijah, who is having a good time on stage singing a country tune. His stage presence is infectious. He still has the tendency to overdo the adlibs, but he delivers with a solid tone with personality. Lionel wants Elijah to attack even more. Katy thinks he delivered a good time. “You nailed it.” Luke loved the song choice. “It was a great performance.”

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Paige Anne – Wrecking Ball by Miley Cyrus

Initially Paige was eliminated in a sing-off with Megan Danielle. But then, as Ryan explains, a Top 26 contestant “decided to bow out.” At that point, as a 1st alternate, Paige got the call to return. “Everything happens for a reason,” Noah observes after Paige relates her circuitous route to the Top 26. Paige is singing a song by Noah’s sister and is very nervous during rehearsals. Can she hit the high note? “Wrecking Ball” is a big song. It’s a little too big for Paige. But overall, she’s delivering and pretty much nails the big note at the key change. Yeah…it’s a stretch for her, but she pulls it off. Katy loved how she ended the song. “I hate being wrong! You belong here!” Luke thought she showed up and brought the goods. Lionel said she made them feel like “Maybe we made a mistake!”

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Marybeth Byrd – Heart Like a Truck by Lainey Wilson

Marybeth is a big fan of Noah’s. They sing a bit of “Mad at You” together. The judges criticized her for sounding “yelly” on her showstopper song. Now she’s afraid to sing high notes. “Don’t be afraid,” Noah urges her. She gives her tips on how to sing high notes confidently. Luke does the “goosebump” motion. A song that allows Marybeth more room for subtle dynamics works for her. The song opens up slowly before she goes for the high notes, and she sounds fine. (I actually liked her showstopper performance.) Luke calls the song choice “perfect…truly special special stuff…a really big country star in the making.” Lionel says she has a “twang thang.” Katy calls her a “rhinestone cowboy” and a “solid storyteller” who doesn’t need “vocal gymnastics.”

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Wé Ani – Edge of Midnight by Miley Cyrus and Stevie Nicks

Wé wants to show the judges that she can rock out. Noah helps the singer work and own the stage. Wé has such a powerful instrument, she can cross a bunch of genres, including rock. She’s connecting with the audience, grabbing hands. The judges are on their feet before the song is over. She ends on a spectacular note. Great performance. Lionel is so excited, “You either have stage presence or you don’t…I’m in love with what you do.” Katy says, “you really attacked it…you are a star.” Luke compliments her “command of the stage.” He says, “Great performance.”

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Michael Williams – Tuesdays by Jake Scott

Michael dedicates his song to his parents, who are celebrating their 40th wedding anniversary. Noah suggests he take the song up a half step. She wants to push his falsetto. Michael has a pretty tone, but it’s very soft. Katy is swooning. He is a cute guy who will probably be most effective singing romantic songs like this. He comes across as earnest and sweet. Katy says, “I had chill bumps all over. People are falling in love with you. You are going to be a star with or without us.” Luke calls it his “defining moment.” Lionel says, “You got the heartthrob…voice…and stage delivery going. You nailed it.”

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Dawson Wayne – Copycat by Billie Eilish

Dawson hasn’t had much screen time. He explains that his family is musical. He mentions having a distinct sound. It’s soft. But the big voices intimidate him. Noah thinks he sounds strange, and suggests he bring the song down a half step. This poor guy has to nail it here, or he’ll be gone. The song choice and delivery is interesting. But I’m not sure he can make an impact on viewers at this point. Luke calls the song a departure and prefers his voice tender. He calls it a “solid” performance. Oh boy. Lionel calls the risk he took “brilliant” and asks the fans to vote. Kate calls it a “dice roll” that took her a minute to get.

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Hannah Nicolaisen – Glitter in the Air by Pink

Since final judgement, Hannah has quit her job and got engaged to her boyfriend. Noah wants her to dig even deeper on the second verse. But otherwise, she had no notes. This is a great song choice for Hannah it highlights her unique and beautiful tone. She does subtle things with her phrasing that really pay off. Just beautiful. She’s under the weather, which makes her big notes raspy. But it works for her. Katy thinks she picked the right song. Luke loves her growth. “You should be really proud.”

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Megan Danielle – The Chain by Fleetwood Mac

Megan celebrated her 21st birthday this week. The young singer is struggling with eye contact. Noah says it’s ok to look past people when her eyes are open as she tries to pump up Megan’s confidence. If she’s nervous, she doesn’t seem like it once she hits the stage. Megan still needs work on her stage presence. She works the stage, but never really lets loose from a physical standpoint. Vocally, however, she lays it out. Katy calls her an effortless powerhouse singer. Luke thinks she’s growing too. Lionel says, “You want to be a stylist. You have that quality.”

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Malik Heard – Ain’t it Fun? by Paramore

Noah suggests that Malik lose some of the runs. He gets it. It’s something he’s working on. “Save your tricks,” Noah advises. Malik is another contestant who hasn’t received much screen time. An out of the box song choice, Malik transforms the rock song into a smooth R&B tune. He still sings too many runs, but he works the stage really well. He’s full of energetic soul, this one. Luke calls it Malik’s best performance so far. “You lit the whole island up.” Lionel says, “On fire!” He compliments his immense confidence. Katy calls Malik a “dark horse” and a “natural star.” She adds…”You could…” and doesn’t finish the sentence. Malik responds confidently, “…win American Idol!”

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Olivia Soli – Emotions by Mariah Carey

Noah gives her tips on how to approach the mic stand like a diva. “There’s nothing you have to worry about. Just have fun.” And just like that, Olivia makes this 90’s classic sound contemporary. Her delivery is confident and effortless. She spend most of the song in her upper register and never sounds strained. This is a tough song, and she nails it. Lionel says, “That’s crazy talent.” He begs people to vote. “You have a career. You can go anywhere you want to go.” Luke says, “You embodied Mariah, but it was your deal too…you’re probably a couple of steps above others in this competition.” Katy heard her sound checking. Her family all freaked out. “You strutted all over that stage,” she says

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Noah Cyrus – Everybody Needs Someone

Noah takes the stage herself to sing her latest single “Everybody Needs Someone.” She sounds like Miley, but even more alto than her sister. The two are closer in style than they have been in the past. Noah has opened for Katy. They exchange “I love yous.”

Colin Stough – Midnight Train to Memphis by Steeldrivers

Noah and Colin bond over their love of horses. She tries to help him with his nerves and confidence. She suggests he look at the judges, but past them if it makes him too nervous. His hair is longer and he lost the cowboy hat. The new look makes him seem less guarded. He’s got a good voice, but needs to open up physically on stage. More performance experience will fix that. Ha. He really pushes the hayseed deal. Katy notes his lack of confidence, but blames it on his youth. Luke thought the last half of the song was better. Lionel agrees with Luke. He jokes about Colin dedicating his “rock” song to his mom.

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Tyson Venegas – It Will Rain by Bruno Mars

Tyson’s connection to the song comes through his close family ties. They are all in Hawaii to support him. Noah suggests that he lean into the floor when he’s singing the big notes. Tyson’s tone is the epitome of pure. It’s clean and sweet. He growls on the second verse. He delivers a tour de force performance. Big long note before the quiet finish. He managed to be dramatic, but not bombastic. Lionel felt that he shouldn’t have worked the crowd, that it distracted from his performance. Katy and Luke agree. I’m surprised they criticized him. That was an impactful performance.

Nutsa – Paris (Ooh La La) by Grace Potter & The Nocturnals

Nutsa shares that she performed the song at 13 for the first time. Noah tries to calm Nutsa down. More storytelling, less tricks, she says. Nutsa admits that she kind of loses it in front of an audience. She has a strong voice, but I find her kind of corny? She’s unnecessarily histrionic whether singing a ballad, or an uptempo song like this. She finishes the song in a backbend. It’s a lot. Luke says, “great job!” Lionel says, “That was just so wonderful to watch.” Katy says, “You glitter bomb the stage.” She challenges Nutsa to leave the glitter behind next time. “We want to be pulled in by our hearts.” I agree. She performs like a pageant queen.

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About mj santilli 34980 Articles
Founder and editor of, home of the awesomest fan community on the net. I love cheesy singing shows of all kinds, whether reality or scripted. I adore American Idol, but also love The Voice, Glee, X Factor and more!