Fire Wilmore learned that the show must go on in brutal fashion on Monday’s “American Idol.” And it all played out before crying judge Katy Perry. (Watch the video below)
The contestant, a stripper who got a second audition to advance in the competition, was dealt a giant blow before her Hollywood Week duet with Kaya Stewart, the daughter of Eurythmics’ Dave Stewart.
Stewart declared onstage she was too sick to perform and was withdrawing from the show. That left Wilmore, who previously hinted at abandonment issues growing up in a household destroyed by drugs, alone on the stage and crying.
Contestant Jayna Elise graciously stepped in to perform with Wilmore on Adam Lambert’s “Whataya Want From Me.”
“Listen, Fire, you’re not gonna be abandoned anymore,” Perry said.
Wilmore gamely sang while crying at times. That triggered full-on waterworks from Perry.
“I’m proud of you,” the “Firework” pop star said. “You’re growing, little by little. … Thank you for standing up here and continuing to try.”
Perry then told Wilmore she was “going forward” in the competition.
The show was also rocked by a sudden withdrawal on Sunday by Sara Beth Liebe, who said she had to take care of her three children. Perry had earlier made a controversial joke about Liebe being a young mother.
Wilmore previously went viral when her daughter handed her a golden ticket during her first audition ― after she had already been rejected. Perry invited her back for a tryout at another site, and Wilmore performed well enough to advance.