It’s 100%, honest-and-truly, undoubtedly official: Harry Connick Jr. is joining the American Idol judging panel for series 13 of Fox’s hit talent show!
The rumor mill has come to a halt as Fox finally confirmed what we previously believed and announced Connick Jr. as the new judge and mentor.
Connick will be joining forces with Jennifer Lopez and Keith Urban, as well as veteran host Ryan Seacrest, in a bid to boost the show’s ratings and add a breath of fresh air to the long-running entertainment programme.
In a statement, Fox Entertainment Chairman Kevin Reilly said, “American Idol has always been about discovering the next singing superstar, and next season our judging panel will deliver a most impressive combination of talent, wisdom, and personality to do just that.”
He then praised the show’s judging panel, labelling J-Lo a “triple-threat global superstar,” praising Keith Urban for being a “multi-Grammy-winning artist who was such a positive force on the show last season,’ and admiring Connick for being a ‘bonafide musical genius and fantastic Idol mentor.”
Reilly went on to say, “We are also very excited to have our friend Randy Jackson now in a new role as mentor, and the captain of our team – the heart and soul of Idol – Ryan Seacrest returning as host.”
Harry Connick Jr. joined Reilly in his excitement: “I have always been a huge fan of American Idol and really enjoyed my time as a mentor on the show. And I am honoured that they’ve asked me to be a judge this season. As an entertainer, I am truly excited to bring my perspective to American Idol, and to help emerging performers find their way.”
A fresh perspective may be just what the show needs to make it stand out from competing shows such as The Voice, The X Factor, and America’s Got Talent. Keith Urban seems to agree: “I think this season of Idol is gonna be a blast. New team, new energy, and a whole new field of artists to be discovered and given a chance!”
It all starts today, as the judges make their way to Boston, Mass to begin their search for America’s next superstar.
Series 13 of American Idol will hit your screens in January.