We had to push past a jungle of battery-powered LED signs, three-foot gold balloons, huge, washing-machine box-sized signs decorated in glitter, sequins and fringe – and all said the same thing: Scotty McCreery.
We also heard a nonstop chorus of hoots, hollers, screams of: “Scotty!!!”
Throughout this whole season, at least from inside the theaters where I watched “Idol” nearly every week, it was clear the audience was in love with the 17-year-old from Garner, North Carolina. From grade schoolers to grandmas, McCreery cast a spell of country charm on the fans – and it paid off.
Interestingly, when McCreery was named the winner, the crowd was kind of, well, eh. I guess they already knew. Runner-up Lauren Alaina took it quite well. No breakdown. Not much emotion.
From out middle-of-the-theater seats in the Loge, row H, seat 319, here’s what else we saw when the cameras weren’t looking…
We think Ryan Seacast is ready for daddyhood. He was adorable with a four-year-old kid in the audience named Jordan. He went over to the pint-sized fan, stooped down and joked to the crowd, “We’re the same size.” One of the stagehands quipped, “And you don’t even need to bend down!”
Lady Gaga Gooses…: After Lady Gaga rose from the ashes of her jump, she ran off stage but not before goosing executive producer Nigel Lythgoe.
Metal Rules! After James Durbin performed with Judas Priest (my favorite moment of the night), James dropped to his knees and rallied the crowd for more applause for his metal idols.
Glam Squad: Wanna know how Jennifer Lopez stays looking so purty? She has a team of people gussying her up non-stop. Her glam squad – a hairdresser, a makeup artist, and a stylist – attended to her locks, lips, and loveliness every commercial break.
Casey & Jack: Bromance? The funnyman and top 10er literally skipped off stage together after performing Queen’s “Fat Bottomed Girls.” They looked like they had a blast.
J.Lo & Marc Anthony: After their steamy performance, I heard someone say, “Wow, if that’s how hot their bedroom is, no wonder they had twins.”
Bono’s Help: If you’re wondering how the audience knew the words to “Rise Above” by Bono and Reeve Carney from the Broadway musical “Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark” Corey, the audience warmer-upper begged the crowd to sing along and the powers-that-be put the lyrics on the big screens to help everyone out. Most people still didn’t sing.
J.Lo Fun Fact: J.Lo hit the red carpet arrivals for exactly 1 minute and 20 seconds, then left in a black SUV with a license plate: Diva 24.