Judges Skeptical When Squeaky Teen Says He's Singing Sinatra, Soon Learn Just How Wrong They Were


Don’t judge a book by its cover … or as the American Idol judges just learned, don’t judge a contestant by his speaking voice.

16-year-old Zach D’onofrio from Florida completely caught the Idol judges off guard. The Internet is loving it, too; his audition video has over 15 million views!

D’onofrio came into the audition room, obviously nervous but soon broke the ice with the gifts he brought for the judges: crazy socks.

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He handpicked socks for each of the judges: socks with skulls for Lionel Ritchie, socks with kittens and rainbows for Katy Perry, and socks with roosters for Luke Bryan.

They loved it. Perry immediately put the kitten socks on her hands where they remained for the rest of the audition.

When D’onofrio began singing Frank Sinatra’s “The Way You Look Tonight,” the judges were shocked. The teen’s deep, smooth singing voice was strikingly different to his speaking voice.

Perry laughed and then got up to dance with the teen with her new socks still on her hands. Lionel and Bryan even began dancing together.

It’s impossible to not dance to Frank Sinatra.

After the song ended, Bryan asked him to speak again. “Is this really your speaking voice? You swear?” he asked amazed.

D’onofrio assured him that he wasn’t faking it.

Still mesmerized, the judges asked him to “drop” into his singing voice one more time. They had to see the transition again.

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“You had me at kitten socks, but your speaking voice is going to change obviously,” Perry joked.

The judges gave him a few critiques to work on before advancing to Hollywood, but D’onofrio received a golden ticket! He is thankful that he wore his lucky socks that day.

D’onofrio is extremely grateful for the amount of support he’s received since his audition. “I hope I can show you that it’s good to be different. Stay unique and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise,” he wrote on his Instagram.

“This show will you teach you, don’t judge any human being on this planet,” Bryan said in conclusion.

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Kayla has been a staff writer for The Western Journal since 2018.
Kayla Kunkel began writing for The Western Journal in 2018.
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