Film and TV

Haeley Vaughn is Colorado's great American Idol hope

For a while, it looked as if the most notable thing to happen at the Denver auditions for American Idol would be the death of a dog left locked in a car by an idiotic wannabe from North Dakota.

Frankly, most of the contestants seen receiving golden tickets to Hollywood during last night's Denver-based show were underwhelming -- including Mark Labriola (he offered a decent though unspectacular rendering of Squeeze's "Tempted"), Kimberly Kerbow (a merely decent rendering of Ingrid Michaelson's "The Way I Am"), Tori Kelly (her take on John Mayer's "Gravity" didn't have much of it) and Casey James (he made it mostly because he willingly took off his shirt at the urging of Kara DioGuardi and guest judge Victoria Beckham, who seemed more interested in what hopefuls looked like than how they sounded).

Notable exception: Haeley Vaughn, a sixteen-year old from Fort Collins.

Vaughn displayed a winsome combination of innocence and star power as she warbled Carrie Underwood's "Last Name." Of all the people on view last night, she seemed the likeliest to make a serious impact. Get ready to root, Colorado.

As for the most memorable moment, it came courtesy of Ty Hemmerling, who works at The Wolf/92.5 FM, as noted on the station's Facebook page. Look below for his deathless turn as "Bikini Boy."

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Michael Roberts has written for Westword since October 1990, serving stints as music editor and media columnist. He currently covers everything from breaking news and politics to sports and stories that defy categorization.
Contact: Michael Roberts