Drew Angus ’07 claims a golden ticket to Hollywood


Kacey Hertan , Business Manager

American Idol Drew Angus ’07 earned a golden ticket to Hollywood from American Idol judges Harry Connick, Jennifer Lopez and Keith Urban for the current and final season of the show.

“To be validated by such industry legends is such an incredible experience,” Angus said.

The audition process began when the executive producer of the show told a friend of Angus’ who works in publishing to let him know if he knew anyone right for the show. The friend send Angus’ information to the producer who immediately responded positively.

Before auditioning for the show’s judges, Angus had to go through three rounds of producer auditions in Philadelphia, which took a full 12 hours. Although it was long, there was an upside. “I met a lot of cool musicians who were all in the same boat, talented folks on the same path, trying to plug away at music,” Angus said.

He was invited to return later in August for the audition in front of the American Idol judges. “Keith was into it. J-lo was into it, and Harry said ‘you seem like a real artists and you’re the kind of person who we want on the show,’” Angus said.

While at Staples, Angus was involved in audio production and Staples Players. He was also a regular on Staples TV, Bedford TV and Coleytown TV. Furthermore, he cut his first album at Staples with the help of Mr. Honeycutt. “That day Drew was really excited to be in the Staples Media Lab recording studio having his own recording session. I am not sure how much formal musical training he had had, but he was, in my opinion, a musician and had some original material he wanted to record,” Jim Honeycutt said.

Current Staples students Jimmy Kavetas ’16, Moe Hayward ’16, and Ethan Shenhar ’16 have followed in Angus’ footsteps to record their own albums with their bands at Staples. “I like to think that students who have interests like Drew and other types of media students find a place for themselves in our media program,” Honeycutt said.

Staples Players also played a significant role in Angus’ life. “In Staples [Players] I never got a lead role. I was always a chorus member no matter how hard I tried…There was a lot of failure, but I learned from it,” Angus said.

It is on that note that Angus would give advice to other Staples students looking to follow his lead to a career in music. “Every time someone says no, get up and dust yourself off. Failure has helped shape me and put me on the right path,” Angus said.

Angus preferred not to comment on how to pursue a career on reality TV other than to say, “Reality TV is a very small lens. The public eye doesn’t see everything that goes on behind the scenes, and sometimes what goes on behind the seasons isn’t pretty.”

Honeycutt expressed similar frustration with reality TV shows such as American Idol. “We have had a number of remarkably talented, former Staples students try out for American Idol like April Krysiuk or Ryan O’Neill and they never made it past the first round…So I have often scratched my head about the whole American Idol process,” Honeycutt said.

In January, Angus was turned away from The Voice and told he sounded great but the show was looking for “bearded men.” Despite his feelings about reality TV, Angus is excited to be a part of American Idol.

“It doesn’t matter whether you win or lose the competition, just being part of the system is such an incredible, fulfilling and trying experience,” Angus said.