EYEWITNESS LOCAL NEWSLOCAL IDOL TALENT
from Eyewitness News Online
Chase Likens Makes It To Hollywood Week On American Idol
Reported by: Darrah Wilcox
Web Producer: Darrah Wilcox
Reported: Feb. 9, 2012 5:17 PM EST
Updated: Feb. 9, 2012 7:41 PM EST
Huntington , Cabell County , West Virginia
A local singer is hoping Hollywood week is just the start of his journey on American Idol.
20-year-old Chase Likens is a junior theater major at Marshall University, and took time out to talk to Eyewitness News about his American Idol experience.
Likens says, "I'm ecstatic just to be a part of this competition. If you don't like American Idol, you at least know about it, and that's what's so special about it. I think that's what makes it so special for me being a part of it, and meeting everyone that you wouldn't necessarily meet in any other kind of setting. All these people are out to do essentially what you want to do, and that's to be an entertainer worldwide."
Likens started singing when he was about five, and he thinks his voice and personality offer something fresh and new to the music scene. "Elvis is the person who inspired me to be a performer, so it just came natural to me after watching some his performances, that that was what I wanted to be."
He says he's proud of taking the initiative to audition in Pittsburgh. He says, "I think taking this step has been very uplifting for myself, because it showed me what, and it is showing me what I can do, for the community around me, as far as inspiring people to go beyond what they think they can achieve."
He made it to Hollywood after that Pittsburgh audition. "It's kinds of out out of body experience if you will, because if you're not already so confident in yourself, you have to portray that on stage. You have to let the judges know that you're there and you're the real deal, and that you're there to make an impact on the competition."
So what was it like meeting the superstar judges... Randy Jackson, Jennifer Lopez, and Steven Tyler? Likens tells us he was kind of awestruck, but managed to keep it together. "It was really tough to gather my composure just to be able to belt the notes out. I mean, something that simple, but that's where confidence comes into play."
They actually said "Bingo" after his performance... and gave him the coveted "golden ticket" to Hollywood.
He's had a ton of local support from family and friends, and saw how much the community supported fellow West Virginian and America's Got Talent winner Landau Eugene Murphy, and hopes to get that same support if he makes it through to another round. "They stood right behind him through every performance, watched day in day out, week in week out, He put on a show, and that's exactly what I'm here to do for American Idol."
He encourages others to follow their own dreams. Whatever your dreams are, you need to go confidently in the direction of them, and I've always believed that. I mean, it's a cliche term, but I've always heard that, and I always will believe that, and if I can encourage someone from Point Pleasant, be it Mason County, any county from West Virginia or across the country.
If he does make it big one day, he says he won't forget where he came from. "It took all my experiences here at Marshall, and it took all my experiences in Point Pleasant for me to get to where I am today, and to potentially be the superstar that I achieve, that I aspire to be."
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