After airing for a whopping 20 seasons, American Idol is back in 2022 with a brand new batch of contestants. The audition rounds are over and now the talented singers are being whittled down week by week. Cadence Baker, Fritz Hager, Christian Guardino and many more artists are competing for this year’s winning title on American Idol.

American Idol has come with a fair few surprises over the years. From Corey Clark’s unexpected departure from the show in the early seasons to Kenedi Anderson leaving the show in 2022, the competition is often full of twists and turns. One contestant who had the judges shocked this year was Leah Marlene. So, let’s find out more about the singer…

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Meet American Idol’s Leah Marlene

Leah Marlene auditioned for the judges in Nashville and sang not one, but two songs. Leah Marlene took the judges by surprise as she filled the room with her positive energy. Donning a quirky hat, jacket and her guitar, Leah certianly made a great impression at the Nashville auditions.

The American Idol star hails from Normal, Illinois and is 20 years old.

Leah said that she’s a huge fan of American Idol and was pretty much “coming out the birth canal” when Kelly Clarkson won the show back in 2002.

  • OMG: Musical talent certainly runs in American Idol star Cadence Baker’s family

Leah is a dropout

After singing One Direction’s Steal My Girl, Leah gave the judges a performance of an original song of hers.

Leah said that she’d written a song, Wisher to the Well, with two friends of hers in Nashville.

She added that she’d gone to Belmont University in Nashville for two years but just dropped out.

Leah added: “I’m a dropout baby, and im proud of it.

Is Leah on the ‘gram?

Yes, just as many of her competitors including Fritz Hager, Katyrah Love and Cadence Baker are on Instagram, Leah Marlene is too.

She first made her music account back in 2014 and, judging by her posts, has always been keen to get behind the mic.

With 24.5K followers on Instagram, Leah Marlene can be found under the handle @leahmarlenemusic.

It’s clear to see from Leah Marlene’s IG page that she’s been around music all her life and she also said during her American Idol audition that her father was an eighties rocker. Her dad is Derry Grehan from Canadian rock band Honeymoon Suite.

During the 2022 competition so far, Leah has performed all kinds of songs including Bruno Mars’ Locked Out of Heaven and Blondie’s Call Me.

  • NO WAY: American Idol’s Christian Guardino endured sight loss but his talent is clear to see

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