American Idol stepped up its search for the country's next singing sensation on Wednesday (February 15, 2012), as Hollywood Week put the contestants through their paces with a group performance round. Singers were haphazardly thrown together and asked to put together a piece to perform in-front of the judges.
Host Ryan Seacrest calls the group round of American Idol, "the most infamous night in Hollywood Week", which isn't far off the mark. The remaining 185 contestants were asked to form teams of four or five and pick a song from a list of 20. They were then instructed to come up with a performance, with choreography included. As Idol's official website read, "Who will still be standing after the carnage of Hollywood Week group round?", the singing hopefuls took to the stage on Wednesday to sing for their golden ticket into the next round. Some fared better than others under the pressure, with Reed Grimm, Creighton Fraker, Aaron MACellus, Jen Hirsh and Nick Boddington - singing as 'Groove Sauce' - impressing the judges with a rendition of 'Hold On, I'm Comin'. The performance earned all five members a place in the next round. Elsewhere, 'The Betts', made up of Jennifer Malsch, Cherie Tucker, Cari Quoyeser, Gabrielle Cavassa and Brianna Bell, "attempted" to sing Blu Cantrell's 'Hit Em Up Syle' but failed completely. The entire performance was flawed from start to finish, with Randy Jackson and his fellow judges looking on in horror. The panel decided that Jennifer and Cari showed the most promise throughout the failed performance, and put them through to the next round. 'The Bettys' weren't the only band to botch their performance, with some contestants forgetting lyrics and others simply not singing in-tune.
Just as Symone Black fainted and fell off the stage during last week's auditions, it was the same for singers Jacquie Cera and Imani Handy during the group performances, who both passed out.