Celebrity
Jennifer Hudson's American Idol Audition Is So Powerful
Even early on, it was clear that her voice was one of all the all-time greats!
Ryan Aliapoulios
06.26.19

Today, Jennifer Hudson is known as one of the world’s best female vocalists.

Hudson is known for her soulful, technically precise and powerful voice. Though she has plenty of credits, she’s probably best known for her star-making role in Dreamgirls, for which she won an Oscar!

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wikipedia.org

Beyond that, she’s also starred in the Broadway adaptation of The Color Purple, has released several studio albums and has been a vocal coach on both the UK and US versions of The Voice.

But Hudson got her start, like many other contemporary musicians and singers, on American Idol.

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Though she’s an industry veteran now, Hudson’s first appearance on the national stage was on the third season of American Idol in 2004.

In the first few seasons of the show, the judge line-up was the iconic trio of Randy Jackson, Paula Abdul and, of course, Simon Cowell. Though the format of the show has always been more or less the same, the judges have rotated out from time to time.

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To add to that, the overall vibe of the show has changed as well—though most of the judges are nice and friendly now, the original trio was pretty tough on even the best contestants.

That’s exactly what happened in Hudson’s audition in Atlanta.

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As she steps out, she introduces herself as Jennifer Hudson from Chicago, Illinois.

She was only 21 years old at the time and had just gotten back from performing on a Disney cruise ship. “We’re going to expect something better than a cruise ship performance here today, right?” Jackson asks her right away.

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Hudson smiles and responds that it will definitely be better than that, though it looks like the comment was just a little bit hurtful. No matter how tough the judges are, Hudson holds her own: she says that she thinks she is the best that they can find in America at what she does.

With that, she tells everyone that she’s going to sing “Share Your Love With Me” by Aretha Franklin.

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As she begins, it’s the first time anyone has heard Hudson’s now-iconic voice—and she sounds incredible.

Although she has plenty of accuracy, what really stands out is just how powerful and soulful her voice is.

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While the judges seem determined not to give anything away or show how they feel about the performance, it’s clear that her power is blasting through their indifference at least a little bit. For what it’s worth, maybe the judges were just having an off day that day?

After a few more big notes, Jackson holds up his hand to stop her from singing.

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When it’s finally over, it’s time for the judges to give their opinions… and they think she’s incredible!

Because they were so reserved at the beginning, this news comes as maybe a little bit of a shock to Hudson. Still, all three of the judges are very impressed by her power and her confidence. After that, they all sound off that Hudson will get three yeses… and that she’s going to Hollywood. As she walks out of the audition room, she sings loudly and proudly:

“I’m going to Hollywood!”

And the rest, as they say, is history.

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Congratulations to Jennifer Hudson on amazing audition that launched a career. Watch the full clip below:

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By Ryan Aliapoulios
hi@sbly.com
Ryan Aliapoulios is a contributing writer at Shareably based out of Los Angeles. Find him on Twitter @rollyops.
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