The March 21 episode of American Idol 2012 featured the top 10 contestants as they sang tunes from Billy Joel's impressive songbook. One of the evening's best performances belonged to chronic low vote-getter Elise Testone, who earned a standing ovation and glowing remarks from the judges.
While most of the other contestants selected well-known tunes, Elise went with her gut and chose the relatively obscure "Vienna." Although Jimmy Iovine and guest mentor Diddy worried over her selection and her ability to bring a "magical moment" to the show, they worked with her to perfect the song.
During her session with show style advisor Tommy Hilfiger, she shared that she likes '70s style vintage clothes, and Tommy suggested that she wear high-waisted bell bottoms with a short jacket. He hoped to see "transformation" in her typically layered look.
Elise hit the stage at showtime dressed in a long maroon dress with a black gauzy cape. She followed Diddy's advice about removing the mic from the stand, which brought a little extra energy to her routine. Her vocals were strong and on-point, and she rightfully earned a standing ovation.
Steven Tyler loved the melody and called it "brilliant." He was impressed with her song choice and her outfit. Jennifer Lopez said she was so happy that she wanted to "shake you and hold you and squeeze you." She loved seeing Elise's personality on display. Randy Jackson called her "unbelievably talented" and was especially impressed with her run at the end of the song.
Will Elise Testone's stellar performance keep her out of the bottom three tomorrow night? Tune in to the American Idol 2012 top 10 results show Thursday at 8 PM for the scoop.