Parker teen McKenzi Whittington is hoping to make it to Hollywood.
The 18-year-old Ponderosa High School graduate auditioned for “American Idol” on July 29 after earning a front spot in line. She won a local “Denver Idol” competition, sponsored by Fox 31 News, sending her to the front of the line at Invesco Field in Denver.
Whittington first auditioned for American Idol in Denver two years ago, but didn’t make it through. This time, she has high hopes of impressing the judges. Due to confidentially rules, Whittington was unable to reveal how auditions went this time around, but leading up to the audition, she was nervous and excited.
“The first time I auditioned I was 16 and it was the craziest thing I have ever been to,” she said. “But I just wasn’t ready and I was young. Over these two years, I have matured a lot in my voice and I’m just excited. But I’m really nervous.”
After winning the Denver Idol competition, Whittington said she felt a lot of pressure going into the American Idol audition. She doesn’t want to let anyone down. But singing is part of who she is, something she believes she is naturally good at. And if American Idol doesn’t work out, that won’t stop her from pursuing music.
“I’m not going to college because of singing. It was a big decision, but I turned down soccer scholarship to sing,” she said. “ ‘American Idol’ is a wonderful opportunity and if it arises, great, that is awesome. But there are so many ways to get your foot in the door and I will find another route if needed.”
For Whittington, music is a way to express herself, an outlet to explore her emotions. She said she’s written songs about past boyfriends, her family, pretty much anything.
“I think I just found something I’m truly good at. I’m good at writing music and listening to it and picking it apart. My strength is writing songs,” she said. “My guitarist and I just finished my demo CD so that is really exciting.”
To find out the results of Whittington’s audition, catch the new season of “American Idol” on Fox in January.