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The “American Idol” season finale saw local musician Leah Marlene was eliminated.

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(On ABC’s Heart of Illinois) Local performer Leah Marlene voted off in the first round of American Idol’s Season 20 finale. Many people have voiced their support for the Town of Normal native’s hard trek to the final episode locally and nationally.

During the first round of performances, Bruce Springsteen songs played. The first performer is Leah Marlene. She sang a cover of Bruce Springsteen’s “Cover Me” from his 1984 album Born in the USA. For the most up-to-date information, visit

The journey to each finalist’s hometown brought up at the start of the second round. Marlene began this round with a montage of her return to the town of Normal the day before last. She attended Parkside Junior High School and Normal West High School initially. In the hallways, she ran into friends. While she sang with the school choir and caught up with old teachers, yellow decorations hung on the walls. She went to see her family the next day and had dinner with them before her performance downtown the next night. “I couldn’t be more proud of you,” her father, Derry Grehan, told her. “You’re the ideal daughter for any father.”

She arrived downtown in a private car and performed live in front of thousands of people towards the end of the montage.

“This is the most wonderful thing that has ever occurred to me in my entire life,” Marlene told the crowd. The sheer number of individuals present astounded her.

After the montage, Marlene performed “Flowers,” a song she wrote for the judges. The show’s host, Ryan Seacrest, stated that she wrote the song for her younger self. The song’s message of being strong reflects this. Marlene began to cry as the judges praised her performance and how she had evolved throughout her time on the show.

“I’m just so overwhelmed,” Leah Marlene replied when Seacrest asked how she was feeling.

I wouldn’t have believed you if you told me I was here two years ago. I never saw myself getting out of that circumstance. Now I’m singing this song to folks in that scenario.”

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