Idols judges have last say
Amanda de Lange
Cape Town - After weeks of speculation, the Top 12 finalists of Idols were announced on Monday night. Only two of the 12 are men.
Eight of the Top 12 were chosen by the public after the weekly knock-out rounds, but the judges - Gareth Cliff, Mara Louw, Randall Abrahams and Dave Thompson - had the last say when they picked the final four contestants for the Top 12.
The eight contestants selected by the public during the first four rounds are Deirdre Visser, Phume Zondi, Karin Kortje, Martelize van Niekerk, Gift Gwe, Nhlanhla Mwelse, Veronique Lalouette and Kesha Charton-Perkins.
The four contestants selected by the judges are all girls and not one of the men was lucky enough to receive an okay from the judges.
"This was difficult one," Abrahams told the young men while they were eagerly waiting to hear whether one of them would go through to the Top 12. "We looked at everyone who remained and we have always believed that the guys were not up to the standard of the girls. I was not wrong. Not one of you will be going through."
Jamie-Lee Blokdyk, Bonolo Molosiwa, Ayanda Mpama and Veronique de Lange were all beaming when they took their seats among the Top 12.
"It was very, very difficult," Louw told the contestants regarding the selection of the last four members of the Top 12.
"All of you were absolutely wonderful and it was very difficult to choose between such talent. It is sad to send some of you home."
Three of the Top 12 contestants are still at school. Veronique de Lange from Bloemfontein and Jamie-Lee Blokdyk from Johannesburg are both in grade 12. Deirdre Visser from Pretoria is in grade 11.
All three said that if they remained in the Idols competition, they were unlikely to return to school this year.
"If I remain in Idols until the end, I will write my matric in January and February next year," Blokdyk said.
The first live broadcast of Idols will be on Sunday at 17:30 from Gold Reef City after which the public will have the opportunity to eliminate the first of the Top 12.
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