MK Nobilette on Upping Her Stage Presence, And Coming Out on American Idol


Eliminated American Idol XII contestant, MK Nobilette, made it to the Top 10. Today, in a conference call with reporters, she talked about making tour, coming out on American Idol (and the discussion she had with Adam Lambert about that) and upping her stage presence and self confidence through her experiences on the show.

What kind of album would she like to make? “I love folk rock. I think that would be a good genre for me. I love strings and I love horns. Something folky.”

Who would she love to collaborate with? “Definitely Allen Stone. I think we’d make amazing music together.”

She said she wasn’t entirely unhappy to leave, because her goal was to make the Top 10. Was winning not her real goal? “Of course winning was the real goal. I like to look at it in small increments. To achieve a bigger goal you need to have smaller prizes.”

When she was singing for the save, most of the time the judges weren’t looking at her. How did it affect her singing? “I don’t know how it affected my singing. I wasn’t completely focusing on them. There’s other people to broadcast that emotion to also. I think one of the things the judges would like to see– although they weren’t paying attention the whole time because they were discussing the save–they want to see you interact with the audience. And especially for me, that’s what they wanted to see–to get out of my shell a little bit. I felt like if I was going to leave, I was going to leave with a bang, and give a good performance.”

Was she frustrated that all of the initial attention seemed to be about her sexual orientation rather than  singing talent? “I don’t know if I was angry about it–I definitely was a little bit taken back at first. I’m a singer, but I’m also gay. I feel like it’s important to address that. I’m very proud about it and I’m open about it. It was fine for me.”

Was she worried that being openly gay in the competition might present her with obstacles and challenges to face. Does she think it affected votes from the audience? “Of course. I think it did affect some of my votes from the audience. But I think it would have affected my votes if I didn’t say it, as well. I think it was good and bad.”

She felt her performance of “Perfect” was stronger than the judges did. Was she surprised to be eliminated? “I wasn’t surprised to be eliminated because I know that I did stumble on my lyrics. At this point in the competition, everyone is so good, that if one performance doesn’t stand out as not as good as the rest of them, then that’s the one.”

What was the best advice the judges gave her throughout the competition? “I definitely think that I will always take away what Harry said. Because it did hit home. It hit me hard, in a good way. When he said that it looked like I didn’t want to be there. I think he was wrong, obviously I did want to be there. I wouldn’t have auditioned. Now going into other performances, I always tell myself, ‘You need to prove that you want to be here.’ That was an important thing to hear from Harry.”

What were MK’s girlfriend, Casey‘s, feelings overall about her auditioning and making it into the finals? “She’s a singer too. She’s really supportive. It was great to have her on my side for all of this.”

Does she have any advice for same sex couples who are struggling with making their relationships public? “If any of the same sex couples that are listening to this right now are having trouble coming out, I think that the best thing would be to talk to other people, and just be proud about yourself. No matter what happens, you’re still you and that’s the most important thing.”

Will she stay in LA to cheer on her friends and fellow contestants for the remainder of the show? “I think I will try to come back to a couple of the shows and support my friends. Immediately, I don’t think so. I still have to go home. I would love to be in San Francisco for a little while, because I will be gone for the tour.”

What goes through her mind when she’s singing in front of the judges? “The live performances are not only to the judges. It’s for all of America. So you really utilize the cameras. When you’re looking into the camera, you’re looking straight into the eyes of everyone watching at home. You want to appeal to the judges, but the judges aren’t just lookin for you to appeal to them. They’re looking for you to have good stage presence, and they’re looking for you to move around the stage, talk to the audience, and talk to the people at home.”

Is the reality of Idol different from the perception she had of the show? “I actually have never watched the show before. I maybe watched it once or twice when Bo Bice was on it. I haven’t seen it in a while. It was a completely new experience for me.”

Did she discuss coming out on the show with Adam Lambert when he mentored the Top 31? “I did talk to Adam Lambert a little bit. He was proud of me for doing it. We are both on different standpoints. Adam didn’t talk about his sexuality when he was on the show, because he felt like it didn’t matter. But for me, I feel the opposite. I feel like it is part of me, and I feel like it matters. If I wanted America to get to know me, and know who I am, then they should know my sexuality.”

What was she trying to figure out with Rickey Minor last night before she sang? “When I went over to Rickey Minor, we were just talking about the end and the beginning of the song because it had been awhile since I had rehearsed the song with band. I just wanted to make sure we were on the same page.”

Has she and her fellow contestants been discussing the upcoming Idol tour? “I think just everyone is really excited for the tour. I think it’s going to be a really good experience for all of us. I think it’s a lot less pressure. The tour is going to be a lot of fun.”

What did she learn about herself during her American Idol experience? “Before American Idol, I was still a performer, and I was still a musician. But, I never thought that being a musician was an achievable goal for myself as a career. Through the process of American Idol I realized that’s the only thing I want to do. I’m definitely going to make that happen.”

What was one of the highlights of the experience? “When America voted me into the Top 10. That was an amazing, amazing experience.”

How was she feeling going into the Save Me performance? “I felt really solid about it. I just wanted to give a good performance before I left. I think I did. I’m proud.”

What advice would she give to the person she was before she began her Idol journey? “Live every performance like it’s your last performance. Really make sure you want to be there. Exactly what Harry said. Prove to the judges that you deserve to be there.”

By going on American Idol, was she hoping to open up more of a dialog about LGBT on television, or was it something that happened just because she was on the show? “I didn’t mean to say it to my advantage. I just think it was an important thing to know about me when I said it. I am hopeful that I will be a good role model for other queer people who are afraid to come out, or who are afraid to think that they can’t do something as big as American Idol. I hope it does influence a lot of people.”

Does she feel that she accomplished everything she set out to do? “I didn’t even know the auditions were happening and my aunt called me and told me to try out. She said why not? She’s a big fan of the show. I tried out. It was sort of…However far I make it I’m going to be proud of myself, for even doing it in the first place. The fact that I made it to the summer tour, which is what my goal, other than winning of course, was, is amazing. I feel very proud of myself.”

Who does she think will be the most fun on the tour? “Caleb is such a funny guy. Caleb will definitely be one of those guys.”

What sorts of things was she doing to keep everybody loose? “We all have so much fun together. We’re constantly jamming, we’re constantly laughing with each other. Me and Dexter have our little pranks. We’re all just so close. We make each other laugh. It’s constantly a good time with them.”

She’s performed Pink’s “Perfect” with her guitar before. How was it without the guitar? What was behind the staging with the mirror? “The song that I picked, is a song that is very extroverted. It’s definitely the first song that I sang that was to other people.’Satisfaction’ was about me and ‘All of Me’ is also about proving something. All the songs that I sang are about myself. This song is to my fans, and to the rest of everyone, to say ‘You’re worth it’ and “Don’t give up’ and “Just believe in yourself.’ It’s a positive song. The message behind having the mirrors on stage was, the first lyrics, ‘Made a wrong turn, once or twice…’ I think that’s showing other people ‘I’ve made mistakes too’ and telling yourself it’s OK and then turning around, and giving that message to everyone else.”

Jennifer was really upset when MK was eliminated. She she talk to her afterward? “She didn’t.” (But Harry did.)

Did Randy give MK good advice? “Randy always had good advice. He was pretty solid with the judges. They all had a lot of similar comments all the time, which I found really interesting.”

What did Harry say to her after she was eliminated? Did she ever get any explanation as to why they judges didn’t use their save? “I didn’t get an explanation at all. I did talk to Harry about saying he thinks I’d make an excellent record. He definitely wants me to record. He thinks I shouldn’t give up [and should] keep trying, and keep pushing. That’s exactly what I’m going to do.”

Was she execting the judges to use the save? “I wasn’t expecting them to use the save. They talked for a long time, so I did think for a second they might. But that’s alright.”

On the band being off when contestants perform, “I think more rehearsal time is always is going to be something that is a good thing. We actually don’t get that much rehearsal time. I think that’s why I fumbled. I don’t think it was the band for me specifically. I came in at the wrong time.”

What will she miss the most about her experience on Idol? “I’ll probably miss hanging out with the other contestants and having all these positive people that are pushing me. The biggest support  [were] definitely my family and the other contestants. The other contestants are everyone’s biggest support.”

When she was on the show, what did she do to shake off a bad week and start fresh again? “You have to tell yourself ‘This isn’t it. Keep pushing forward.’ The reason I didn’t look upset last night, is because, when you look upset–people want to see you look confident, that you’re going to continue and do something, and that it doesn’t mean this is the end. This is just the beginning.”

What song was she planning on singing next week if she was still on the show? “I was going to sing ‘Brass in Pocket’ by The Pretenders next week.”

Is there one song she wished she had gotten the chance to sing on the show? “One of the songs that I wish I could have done on the show,  I couldn’t do due to clearing issues. He’s a small-town artist, and I don’t think many people would have know about him–Jeremy Passion’s “Lemonade.”

How is Idol different from what the viewers see on television? “I think when you watch on television, you don’t expect the contestants to be so close and so much of a family. Behind the scenes of Idol, we are constantly together, constantly just loving each other, and hugging each other and laughing with each other. We love each other so much.”

How has Idol benefited her music career? “It’s benefitting my music career intensely. This is just the beginning. It set me up with a great fan base, who I will continue to bring amazing music to, and hopefully they stay with me through that too.”

Does she think the judges are confusing her chill personality with a lack of stage presence? “No. I think that they are right. I do need to up my stage presence. That is something that I struggle with and I hope that will get better. I know it will get better through the tour. After the tour, I hope it will even get better and better. I wish that it had gotten better during the show. I think it did. But I started from very little confidence. Now I have confidence, at least, beyond the stage, and sing the songs well. That’s the start.”

Only one guy has been eliminated so far. What does she think about that? “The guys are really, really strong this year. There are amazing girls too. It’s really too early to tell what’s going to happen with the winner of the show. I keep thinking in my head ‘Oh, it’s going to be this person…it’s going to be this person’ but then next week, someone does a killer performance, and the whole thing just shifts.”

Was she surprised to see Majesty and Dexter in the bottom 3 with her? “I know Dexter had some problems with his in ears, with the sound. I don’t know how that came across. I didn’t watch the show on television, I only saw it live. I know that it’s different when you watch it on TV. I think they both did killer performances.”

Does she think the judges comments affect who viewers vote for? “I think there’s so many people watching the show that it really depends on the viewer. Some of the viewers definitely take in the judges consideration. Some of the people are completely blown away sometimes. I think it really depends on the viewer.”

About mj santilli 35002 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!