The hit TV show American Idol has been turning musical hopefuls into superstars since 2002. Our city is no stranger to the Idol stage, as two prominent Lakelanders have competed in the show over the past few years.

Most recently, Florida Southern student Zach D’Onofrio competed on the show’s 2021 season. At his audition he performed “Golden Slumbers” by the Beatles and “Falling” by Harry Styles, and all three judges unanimously voted to send him to Hollywood. Now, you can find him finishing up his degree at FSC, making TikToks, and releasing music under the name “Zachary.” Stream his latest single, “Don’t Leave,” @zach_donofrio.

Last year, Lakeland native Kimmy Gabriela advanced to American Idol’s top 20. Known for her powerful vocals, she built a large fan base on the show and is working now on a full-length debut album. You can catch sneak peeks of her original music along with covers of famous songs on her Instagram @kimmygabriela__.