American Idol is returning for its 20th season, and the fifth since moving to ABC, in February.
With the new season has come several changes.
The judging table remains the same, but the show is losing mentor Bobby Bones. There will be a chance to send in audition tapes from home and there will be a new platinum ticket at the in-person auditions.
Here is what you need to know.
American Idol introduces new Platinum Ticket
When people come to a live American Idol audition in their hometown, or one close by, they are coming to perform and impress the three judges.
The judges then decide whether to give them the golden ticket, which means the person moves on to the next round of competition, or they send them home.
Now, there is an added twist.
In the latest American Idol promo, Katy Perry explains to a singer that there are tickets on the wall. They include the golden tickets to move on, but there is also a platinum ticket in that batch.
Each city gets one Platinum Ticket that the judges will give to one lucky contestant.
“See that wall over there… There is one platinum ticket that gets given in each city we go to, you get to go to Hollywood week, but you get a little shortcut because it’s the 20th year of creating superstars, and you’re a superstar,” Perry told the contestant in the teaser clip.
What is the Platinum Ticket on American Idol?
In each city’s audition site, there will be three Platinum Tickets given out.
This includes three in Nashville, three in Austin and three in Los Angeles for a total of nine.
Katy Perry explained what this meant at the Television Critics Association (TCA) Winter Press Tour panel.
“This ticket gives them the ability to go to Hollywood Week, which we’ve already filmed and was so rigorous and survival of the fittest, and they get to basically observe from the box seats at the theater,” Katy said.
“One day, they get to rest their voice, strategize, check out the competition and select who they want to duet with. They get a tiny advantage because they’re the cream of the crop.”
It also appears that when the live shows start, American Idol will have an audience once again.
“It is of course our goal to have the fans back in the studio because that’s what makes the atmosphere,” producer Michaels Wolflick said. “We are ready to pivot on a dime at a moment’s notice, ready to be innovative to make this show move forward in 2022.”
“It is our aspiration at this moment to going back to as many fans as possible in that studio, being completely safe with LA County.”
American Idol Season 20 premieres on Sunday, February 27, 2022, at 8/7c on ABC.