McCreery Wins ‘Idol’ Season 10

McCreery Wins ‘Idol’ Season 10

American Idol finalist Scotty McCreery reacts to the large crowd of fans gathered for his performance at Lake Benson Park on Saturday afternoon May 14, 2011 in Garner, North Carolina. (Robert Willett/Raleigh News & Observer/MCT)

Scotty McCreery has been crowned the new American Idol.

On May 24, “Idol” finalists McCreery, 17, and Lauren Alaina, 16, sang their final songs on one of television’s most popular reality shows. McCreery sang Montgomery Gentry’s “Gone,” George Strait’s “Check Yes or No,” and his first single, “I Love You This Big.” Alaina–who, according to a doctor, had blown out a vocal chord before the show–sang Katrina Elam’s “Flat on the Floor,” Pam Tillis’ “Maybe It Was Memphis,” and her new single, “Like My Mother Does.” Both contestants received generally positive reviews from judges Steven Tyler, Jennifer Lopez, and Randy Jackson.

At the finale on May 25 at Los Angeles’ Nokia Theatre, host Ryan Seacrest announced that a record 122 million people had voted for the two contestants.

Well-known singers performed for the majority of the two-hour finale, such as Beyoncé, Gladys Knight, and Lady Gaga. Viewers even got to see judge Tyler on the piano with a screaming performance of “Dream On.”

But in the end, McCreery was announced the victor, and Alaina the runner-up. McCreery is the show’s youngest male winner, and the second-youngest winner ever (behind season six winner Jordin Sparks, who was also 17 at the time of her win).

Staples students have responded positively to this outcome.

“Scotty was definitely one of the best singers out of all of the contestants this season, and he is just such a nice guy and seems really thankful,” Kate Sabbagh ’13 said. “But I’m really happy he won mostly because he is such a great singer.”

Jacob Baron ’13 furthers Sabbagh’s point, noting that McCreery distinguished himself from other singers today.

“[McCreery] brings new bread to the table. He’s not another product of the mainstream machine. And for a 17-year-old kid to be that good, you have to give him something,” Baron said. “Scotty’s got zest.”

Mary Kate Van Sant ’11 adds that Alaina’s talent should enable her to a successful career as well.

“Who knows? She could be like Chris Daughtry or Jennifer Hudson and blow out all the other winners in terms of success,” Van Sant said.

“Idol” returns to Fox for its eleventh season in January 2012.