Six move on to Idol finals

Feb 282007

Danielle Dickey almost sang for Paula Abdul, Randy Jackson and Simon Cowell.

The open-option freshman made it through two rounds of American Idol last season, but she was sent home just before meeting the judges.

However, she didn’t give up on becoming an Idol. Dickey and 11 other CSU students sang to a packed house last Friday during the fourth annual CSU Idol competition.

Dickey sang “I Know Where I’ve Been” from the musical “Hairspray.” She said she performed the song in high school, so it was easy to perform for Idol.

“You make it seem effortless,” said Marissa Hutton-Gavel, a junior technical journalism major, who was one of four students judging the competition. Hutton-Gavel is also the campus editor at the Collegian.

The crowd also liked Dickey’s performance and voted her on to the final round of CSU Idol. The audience members had two votes each, and if they voted for the same person more than one time their votes weren’t counted.

Dickey and her mom, Karen, acknowledged that the contestant who brings the most people to the event is likely to win, but Karen reminded her daughter that it’s just for fun.

Still, Karen’s friends from work and Danielle’s high school friends will be at the final round, Karen Dickey said.

Dickey started choir in fourth grade, but her mom said she’s been singing since she was a little girl on the swing set. Last year, she performed the national anthem at a Colorado Eagles hockey game.

Another Idol finalist, Chaz Miles, also began singing when he was a child.

Miles, a sophomore speech communication major, said he’s part of a worship team at church, so he is always singing gospel songs.

His favorite song is “Falling in Love With Jesus is the Best Thing I’ve Ever Done,” but he sang “Water Runs Dry” by Boyz II Men for CSU Idol.

When Miles isn’t serenading a crowd with his beautiful voice, he’s on the football field as a wide receiver for the Rams.

“I’m excited (that Chaz made it to the final round),” said Jazelle McClendon, Miles’ 22-year-old sister. “I’ll be here next week. It’s quite a drive, but it’s worth it for my little brother.”

Miles was scheduled to go third, but McClendon was late because she drove from Pueblo so another contestant, Karlee Kerr, switched spots with him so his sister could hear him sing.

Tomorrow Allison Baxter, Tom Darabaris, Brian Lepak and Lexie Brown will join Dickey and Miles in the Idol finals. The competition begins at 7 p.m. in the Ramskeller, and audience members will vote for the Idol winner.

Staff writer Heather Hawkins can be reached at

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