American Idol Vocal Coach Debra Byrd Taking A Leave From Live Shows

Here’s some interesting news for Idol fans, from The Hollywood Reporter:

American Idol vocal coach Debra Byrd will not take part in the show when season 11 live episodes begin airing next week. Although the longtime advisor has been shown during auditions and the Hollywood Week rounds, according to show sources, Byrd will step aside for the rest of the season so that in-house mentor and Interscope Geffen A&M chairman Jimmy Iovine can bring in his own people. “Her role has been diminished,” says an Idol insider. Associate musical director Michael Orland, who’s been with the show since 2002, and vocal coach Peisha McPhee, mother of season 5 runner-up and Smash star Katharine McPhee, will stay on and continue to work with the finalists.

Byrd says that she’s only been informed that “we’re not continuing in the studio,” leaving the door open to future auditions and other Idol-related possibilities.

I wonder if there’s some weird political thing going on behind the scenes, because Peisha and Michael will continue working with the contestants.  That’s too bad.  The kids really seem to love Byrd, who has been with the show since the beginning.

Via the Hollywood Reporter



About mj santilli 34995 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!