Two Utahns advance to American Idol’s Top 24

Apr 12, 2024, 12:17 PM | Updated: Apr 13, 2024, 12:20 pm

KB Richins, one of two Utahns currently competing on American Idol, performs Monday night on ABC ne...

KB Richins, from Henefer, UT, along with American Fork's Elleigh Francom, are both Top 20 contestants on ABC TV's 'American Idol. Photo courtesy of Justin Richins

SALT LAKE CITY – Sunday is a big night for two American Idol contestants from Utah.  Utahns Elleigh Francom from American Fork, and KB Richins from Henefer both made it past auditions, on to Hollywood, then into this season’s Top 24. Sunday night will whittle contestants down to 20 finalists.

Elleigh Francom wowed the judges with a beautiful rendition of “I can’t make you love me,” and brought tears when she shared the news that her father, 75th Operations Squadron’s Lt. Col Matthew Francom, would be deploying, about the time she headed to Hollywood.

Lt. Col. Francom told the Tinker Air Force Base publication this has been a dream of Elleigh’s since she was dancing around the house as a toddler.  Elleigh is the oldest of four kids, who all survived the rigors of military life, Francom says those related struggles have only made Elleigh stronger and more resilient.

She joins another Utahn, KB Richins, whose version of Simple Man surprised just about everyone but her father, Justin.

“She’s just naturally gifted. I knew her voice was as unique as it possibly could be when she was just little-little, and I knew she would be here one day,” Justin said.

Justin said the show has contacted KB several times, finally she decided to try out online, then got the invitation to come sing in front of judges Lionel Richie, Luke Bryan and Katy Perry.

Elleigh and KB hit the stage Sunday night on ABC, hoping to survive the cut.  

This article has been edited to correct Top 20 to Top 24.


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Two Utahns advance to American Idol’s Top 24