How to audition virtually, via Zoom from Florida

Casey Bishop plays first hometown show in Fort Myers

Think you’ve got what it takes to win the next season of “American Idol?” Now’s your chance to prove it.

The TV singing competition is searching for its next superstar, and they’re looking right here in Florida.

“Idol” holds open virtual auditions this Friday for its “Idol Across America” search in Florida. The auditions take place on Zoom.

“Hopefuls can sign up to audition face-to-face in front of producers and receive real-time feedback for a chance at making Idol history and being crowned the next ‘American Idol,’” said a news release announcing the auditions.

Southwest Florida semifinalist Casey Bishop will be featured during the Florida auditions, the release said. “(She’ll be) joining hopefuls in the waiting room for Q&A, audition tips and more.”

Meet the stars:Here’s a look at some of Southwest Florida’s top reality TV participants

Casey Bishop:The ‘American Idol’ singer rocks Fort Myers: ‘This is the best night of my life!’

Bishop, 16, of Estero made it into the show’s Top 4 this past season. The budding rock singer says she learned a lot during her run on the show — including how to cut loose onstage. She was even dropping to her knees onstage by the end.

“The night that I got eliminated, I just went crazy,” she told The News-Press and the Naples Daily News in June. “I woke up that morning feeling at peace and fine and not nervous at all. And I was like, ‘OK … Well, this is new.’

“And then I just totally — I got on my knees on the stage. … It was ‘Live Wire,’ and it was like, slamming. It was so fast and everything was so loud. I remember thinking, ‘Oh my God, I’m on my knees right now!’”

“American Idol” semifinalist Casey Bishop,16, played in front of a local audience during her first-ever hometown concert on Saturday, June 19, 2021. The outdoor event was held at The Buddha LIVE.

This is the second year in a row for “American Idol’s” virtual talent search. Auditions are happening throughout August and September in all 50 U.S. states and Washington, D.C.

The winners will appear on the show’s fifth season on ABC and its 20th season overall. “Idol” previously ran for 15 years on FOX.

Singers can submit applications and audition videos on “American Idol’s” website. For more information, visit

Bishop isn’t the only Southwest Florida resident to make it onto the hit reality TV show. Fort Myers mail carrier Vonzell “Baby V” Solomon got all the way to the Top 3 in 2005 — the same year Carrie Underwood took first place.

Lazaro Arbos of Naples made it into the show’s Top 6 in 2016. Now he sings in a local dance-rock band called The Big Bad Wolves.

Other Florida contestants this season included Alana Sherman of Lakewood Ranch (who made the Top 24), Pensacola’s DeWayne Crocker Jr. (a 2020 contestant who was invited back for “The Comeback” episode but didn’t make it into the Top 10). and West Palm Beach native Willie Spence (a Georgia resident who made into the Top 3 finalists). 

Connect with this reporter: Email or connect on social media at Charles Runnells (Facebook), @charlesrunnells (Twitter) and @crunnells1 (Instagram).

Avi Adkins

Avi Adkins is a seasoned journalist with a passion for storytelling and a keen eye for detail. With years of experience in the field, Adkins has established himself as a respected figure in journalism.

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