Season 16 of American Idol premiered on Sunday with their newest judges Katy PerryKeith Urban and Lionel Richie, as well as the show’s alumni host Ryan SeacrestThe premiere showcased many potential, and not-so-potential, singers, one of the most notable being 15-year-old Mara Justine.

Any singing competition fan could recognize Justine as one of the finalist on season 9 of America’s Got Talent back in 2014. She was eliminated after getting into the Top 12.

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The New Jersey native is even more prepared for this competition and is ready to be the next American Idol. She was one of the first people to audition on the show’s premiere. The judges quickly took a liking towards her, and even noted her young age. Perry noted that the contestant was even younger than the show itself.


Though she is young, Justine’s matured voice managed to impress all three judges with her rendition of Rihanna’s ballad “Love on the Brain.” After her performance, the judges gave her a standing ovation, bringing her to tears. Perry stated that they “don’t need to critique, [they] just need to vote.” Then prompting all three of them to give Justine her ticket to Hollywood.

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After the show aired, Justine tweeted that “this is truly a blessing in [her] life.”


Justine has proven herself as a person to watch as this competition unfolds. Seacrest even tweeted that according to Perry, she is predicted to make it to the Top 10.

The next episode of American Idol air on March 18 at 8 pm on ABC.

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