|1. B||5. A|
|2. B||6. A|
|3. A||7. A OR B IN EITHER ORDER|
|4. A||8. A OR B IN EITHER ORDER|
American Idol premiered in the winter of 2002. It appeared on TV for the first time in January 2002. At that time there were no reality TV shows. All TV channels showed movies or TV series. The people from the channel ABC wanted to do something different. They thought the audience was bored with regular TV shows. People did not want to watch shows with doctors, lawyers or policeman anymore. So ABC came up with a new type of show.
American idol is a reality TV show. There are no real actors or actresses in it. The stars are ordinary people like you and me. The audience really identified with these stars. They felt very close to them. The show was an instant hit. It was very successful and popular from the beginning. ABC was very happy about it. Usually, a new show would cost a lot of money. The producers had to pay both the actors and the writers. But with American Idol it was not the case. These ordinary people did not have to be paid at all. They were happy just to be seen on TV. Besides the show didn't need any writers. The people on the show just sang and gave interviews.
The idea behind American idol is very simple. Three judges tour the country in search of the next music star. They travel all around America and listen to young people sing. Then they choose the best singers and bring them to Hollywood. Here the contestants have to pass a few more singing tests. The best 12 people in the competition go on to the final round. They perform live on TV every Tuesday night. The judges give their opinion after each performance. But the audience gets to vote on who to keep in the competition. People can vote by phone or through text messaging. The singer with the lowest number of votes is eliminated each week. He has to leave the competition for good. The rest go on singing until two people remain. After the final night the most popular singer becomes the American Idol.
So far, there have been 4 American Idols. They all sold a lot of records. But the most popular of all former Idols is the first-time winner Kelly Clarkson . She is a rock and pop star and has won a Grammy Award for her latest album. Two of the other Idols thing more jazz and soul music. Last year's Idol was a country singer.
American Idol is watched not only for singing part. The three judges also play an important role in the show. They argue a lot in front of the camera. Their opinions are always different. This makes the show so exciting. Randy Jackson is a successful record producer. He always acts very cool and relaxed. Paula Abdul is a famous dancer and singer. She is always sweet and has something good to say about the contestants. Simon Cowell, however, is very hard on the contestants. He always finds mistakes and criticizes a lot.