Venezuelan refugee Michelle Sussett received a standing ovation from all of the “American Idol” judges last night. The singer nailed her duet performance with “Despacito” star, Luis Fonsi. The two were right at home singing a bittersweet love and loss song to each other. The two Latin singers covered “I Can’t Make You Love Me” by Bonnie Raitt.
“That is what you call chemistry. Your voices blended together perfectly,” said judge Lionel Richie.
Sussett began her American Idol journey with her audition performance of queen Selena Quintanilla’s song, “Techno Cumbia.” She worked her way up to American Idol’s top 24 with performances of “I’m Coming Out” by Diana Ross, “24k Magic” by Bruno Mars and “If I Were A Boy” by Beyonce. And now with her duet performance, Sussett has won herself a spot in the top 14 of “American Idol.”
Sussett was left completely speechless and in tears after receiving the news about her advancement in the competition.
As a Venezuelan refugee who left her hometown in the midst of a humanitarian crisis, making it this far in the competition is beyond huge for Sussett. She came to the United States at 18 years old and hasn’t been able to see her mother since then, who still remains in Venezuela.
After a long day or week, sometimes all you want to do is chill and watch some trashy TV — no matter what region you’re in. Typically, that translates to reality TV because, well, it’s not the best representation of humanity. Here are some primetime reality shows that became so popular in the U.S. and Europe, that the shows got adapted for Latin American audiences.
Take out Snookie and add in some real tans received by the Acapulco sun. Adapted from its U.S. version of “Jersey Shore,” “Acapulco Shore”premiered on MTV Latin America in the summer of 2014.
The show is still going strong with its fifth season at the Acapulco summer house. It just proves that every part of the world has their very own Jersey shore filled with interesting characters.
“The Bachelor: Em Busca do Grande Amor”
Brazil’s edition of “The Bachelo” only found love on TV for one season. The man giving the roses was much older than his American counterparts who are usually in their late 20s or early 30s. On the contrary, Bachelor Gianluca Perino was 44 years old at the time of filming. Although he was engaged to 28-year-old winner Aane Doux by the end of the show, the relationship only lasted four months. Doux came forward and said it was all a lie. She said Perino had a girlfriend the entire time. This sounds like much more drama than the U.S. version of the show.
“Big Brother: Mexico”
Big Brother is always watching — even in Mexico. Launched in 2002 by Mexican television giant Televisa, the format of the show followed the many successful international versions of “Big Brother.” One of the contestants during the seasons was even a congressman. Jorge Kahwagi of Mexico’s Green Party lived in the “Big Brother”house, with some even accusing him of abdicating his duties.
Taking its cue from the British competitive cooking show, “MasterChef Latino” was presented by Telemundo and broadcasted to households in the U.S. The host is Aracely Arambula and the two celebrity chefs judges are Mexican chef Benito Molina and winner of “MasterChef” Season 6, Claudia Sandoval. Venezuelan chef and actress Sindy Lazo is the season’s most recent winner, a chef who had her own show in Venezuela.
Now in its third season, the cast of “Shark Tank Mexico” had to be wowed by 90 proposals by Mexican entrepreneurs and inventors ready to take a bite out of some investors’ pockets. Some of the sharks include director and founder of Financiera Sustenable Patricia Armendáriz, the sole woman in the group, along with Rodrigo Herrera who is the CEO and founder of Genomma Lab and Carlos Bremer who is the president and director of VALUE Grupo Financiero.
The first episode of the Spanish version of Simon Cowell’s reality show aired in 2007 and again in 2008 on Spain’s Cuatro network. After an almost decade-long hiatus, Spanish channel Telecinco announced it would be reviving the series and started airing the series in April of this year, with singer Laura Pausini serving as one of the mentors.
Although “La Voz” already airing in Spain as the Spanish version of the singing competition of “The Voice of Holland” the showis now coming to U.S. Latino audiences through Telemundo. Luis Fonsi of “Despacito” fame has been tapped as the series’ first vocal coach. We wonder which voice he will turn his chair around for when it starts airing next year. There is also a version airing in Mexico as well as a “La Voz: Colombia” in which Carlos Vives was a coach for the first season.
“American Idol” has gone through a few transformation since it first hit TV screens with Paula Abdul, Simon Cowell and Randy Jackson. Many celebrities have lent their skills to the judges’ panel and many contestants have become stars on their own. One thing that hasn’t changed, Latino excellence on the show. Here are 19 Latinos who we still think about even years after their season because they are just so good.
1. Scotty McCreery, Season 10
CREDIT: scottymccreery / Instagram
Scotty McCreery is the first Latino to win “American Idol” and he has used his win to go place. Sure, it might be in folky, country music, but that’s what is so great about Latinos. We are diverse within our own community.
2. Michelle Sussett, Season 16
CREDIT: michellesussett / Instagram
Michelle Sussett caught everyone’s attention when she auditioned with a Selena song at the beginning. She kept her Latinidad in the forefront of her competition even singing the bilingual version of “Remember Me” from the Disney movie “Coco.”
3. Chris Medina, Season 10
CREDIT: officialmedina / Instagram
Chris Medina was a young, long-haird barista when he auditioned for “American Idol and he has certainly grown up since. He might not be blowing up the airwaves in the U.S., but Median is definitely a star in Europe, specifically Norway.
4. Andrew Garcia, Season 9
CREDIT: andrewgarcia / Instagram
Andrew Garcia made it to the top 10 on his season of “American Idol.” Since the show, Garcia has made a name for himself within the music world and is one of the many success stories from the show.
5. Ada Vox, Season 16 (and Season 12)
CREDIT: adavox / Instagram
Ada Vox first auditioned for “American Idol” for the 12th season as Adam Sanders. After losing that season, Sanders when home and soon the personality of Vox formed and Sanders found a voice. He made ‘American Idol” history by becoming a drag queen to advance to the top 10 before being eliminated, unjustly tbh.
6. David Archuleta, Season 7
CREDIT: davidarchie / Instagram
David Archuleta auditioned for “American Idol” when he was just 16 years old and he showed no fear. The young man became the youngest person to make it to the top finishing in second place for his season.
7. Jessica Sanchez, Season 11
CREDIT: jessicaesanchez / Instagram
Jessica Sanchez is the first female contestant of “American Idol” to get a judge’s save and it definitely was worth it. After the close call, Sanchez made it to second place behind Phillip Phillips.
8. Brandon Diaz, Season 16
CREDIT: brandondiazofficial / Instagram
From the smile to the hair, it is clear that no one is going to forget Brandon Diaz any time soon. The young man gave it his all on “American Idol,” even singing “Despactio” with Luis Fonsi during the duets but he just couldn’t make it to the top 14.
9. Victoria Acosta, Season 12
CREDIT: iamtrenation / Instagram
Victoria Acosta was all over the television when she was competing on “American Idol” with her mariachi singing chops. Now, she keeps a rather low-profile life with a private Instagram account.
10. Karen Rodriguez, Season 12
CREDIT: karenrodriguezofficial / Instagram
Karen Rodriguez used her time on “American Idol” to start her singing career and here she is years later signing a record deal. That is what you call determination, a quality we should all possess.
11. Jeremy Rosado, Season 11
CREDIT: iamjeremyrosado / Instagram
Jeremy Rosado sang his heart out on his season, even being a Wild Card contestant to shake things up. While eh tried his best, he wasn’t able to make it to the top 10. However, the young man is still singing so make sure you check him out.
12. Vanessa Olivarez , Season 2
CREDIT: volivarez / Instagram
Vanessa Olivarez is an OG “American Idol” name. She was there for the second season when everyone was still obsessed with the show, and Simon Cowell’s obsession with being mean.
13. David Hernandez, Season 7
CREDIT: dhernandezmusic / Instagram
There is just no denying that this man’s good looks definitely left an impression on the fans and judges. However, what he did for work before the show is what really caught folks attention. Hernandez is now using his name and fame to represent the LGBTQ community through music since coming out after the show.
14. Jason Castro, Season 7
CREDIT: jasoncastromusic / Instagram
Jason Castro surprised everyone with his voice when he auditioned for “American Idol.” Now, the singer makes a living with music and lives a nice life with his wife and children. Can’t be mad at that.
15. Syesah Mercado, Season 7
CREDIT: syesha / Instagram
Straight from Miami, Syesha Mercado was a force to be reckoned with on “American Idol.” Her voice was powerful and her tiny frame was the perfect vessel to deliver her gift to millions of Americans.
16. Allison Iraheta, Season 8
CREDIT: allisonirahetaofficial / Instagram
Even at the beginning, Allison Iraheta loved to use fun colors in her hair because why not. The singer might not have won her season but she is still making music and staying relevant in the music world.
17. Lazaro Arbos, Season 12
CREDIT: lazaromusic / Instagram
Lazaro Arbos made it all the way to the top 10 in his season and his talent is a major reason why. The Cuban native laid it all on the stage in the final performances trying to get the votes needed to win the prize.
18. Devin Velez, Season 12
CREDIT: devinai12 / Instagram
Devin Velez was one of the top 10 from season 12 and it is clear why. He has the voice. He has the look. He has the drive. Velez will always be remembered for his version of Andrea Bocelli’s “Somos Novios.”
19. Jorge Nuñez-Mendez, Season 8
CREDIT: American Idol / Fox
Jorge Nuñez-Mendez is a hard man to find on social media but he made a big splash on season 8. He made it to the top 15 before being eliminated despite his obvious talent.
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