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William Jessup student is a contestant on ‘American Idol’

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William Jessup University student and Folsom resident Brett Patterson has headed to Hollywood to participate in the next round of auditions with the popular show “American Idol.”

“I have dreams and things I want to fulfill during my life and, as time goes on, I realize that life is short,” Patterson said. “My aunt has been living with terminal cancer and inspired me to recognize that no one is promised tomorrow. ‘Idol’ was something I’ve always wanted to do. I just don’t know what I was waiting for.”

Patterson decided to audition for “Idol” last July and made the drive down to the open casting call at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles along with 8,000 other people.

“The process actually goes quicker than you might imagine,” Patterson recalled. “They line you up and ask you to sing a few words. So, I would sing a few lines and then they would say, ‘OK, you’re moving on.’ I just kept moving along while other people were told they weren’t moving on.”

After auditions with the assistant and executive producers, it was time to audition for the judges.

“The experience was great,” Patterson said. “When I first walked in the room, I was totally nervous, but once I started to sing, my nerves were at ease. Plus, the judges were really friendly.”

He remembered specific comments that each of the judges gave him, starting with Nikki Minaj, who thought Patterson was very refreshing and “owned the room” when he performed. She also thought that his performance was something she expected to see further along in the competition; not so early on. Keith Urban loved the tone and sound of his voice while Randy Jackson commented that Patterson is someone he could see in the music industry today. Mariah Carey said she loved his voice.”

The 20-year-old music major was inspired to sing when he took up piano at the age of 7. Patterson graduated from Vista del Lago High School in Folsom, where he was the first freshman class president. While in high school, he was very involved in Vista’s music program as well as the worship team at East Valley Church in Orangevale. There, he continues to be an active member of their worship team.