After a thrilling run of three months, season 21 of American Idol has finally reached its finale. Despite the consistently dropping viewer count of the show, this year’s contestants brought a breath of fresh air to their performances.
The concluding episode announced the American Idol season 21 winner, Iam Tongi. The owner of the angelic voice that won the hearts of everyone on the show is from Hawaii. Everything about Iam was the perfect match for American Idol, from his doleful story to his heartfelt songs.
Before you get too excited about watching Iam’s videos, let me cruise you through the details of American Idol’s latest winner and the benefits he will enjoy.
Who Won American Idol Season 21 (2023)?
Iam Tongi, an 18-year-old singer hailing from Kahaku, Hawaii, won season 21 of American Idol. The final episode of the show aired on May 21. 2023. He currently lives in Seattle with his family after he was ‘priced out of paradise.’
During the selections, Tongi narrated the tragedy surrounding his father’s death. He explained that his father had kidney failure. The audience connected to his songs even more as he dedicated ‘Monsters’ by James Blunt to his father.
‘Monsters’ was written by James to commemorate his father, who also had chronic kidney disease but later recovered. The melancholy struck too close to the heart of Iam and his audience.
In the finale, Iam sang an original song: “I’ll be Seeing You,” once again dedicated to his late father.
What Did the Winner of American Idol 2023 Get? What Do Winners Usually Receive?
Since season 1, winners of American Idols have been taking home a whopping $250k. Although it was not specified if the 2023 show will have the same cash prize, it is likely not to change. However, the better part of the win is not the cash prize but the record deal that comes with the crown.
Iam Tongi won the cash prize and a record contract with Hollywood Records/19 Recordings. Winners are known to usually profit upwards of $1 million within a year of winning Idol as their albums were released. Carrie Underwood is among the most notable winners, as she has amassed a net worth of $140 million after winning the show’s fourth season.
The cash payment, on the other hand, is paid in two installments. The first half gets paid during the record deal and the second one after the album is completed.
Who Is the Runner-Up of American Idol 2023? What Did They Get?
The three finalists of American Idol season 21 (2023) were Iam Tongi, Megan Danielle, and Colin Stough. Danielle was the runner-up, Colin placed third, while Iam won the competition.
Second and third-place winners are usually not given rewards as grandiose as the top finalist. However, the runner-ups are occasionally known to secure a record contract with half the cash prize as the winner.
Megan Danielle and Colin Stough’s rewards have yet to be publicized, so we are still determining if they have received anything for securing their positions.
Season 21 of American Idol exceeded people’s expectations as the first non-country singer won after quite a few years. Iam’s passion for singing has made people realize that flashy outfits and performances aren’t necessary when someone has raw talent.
Iam Tongi’s tale and voice both have won over Americans, and he is also the first Pacific Islander to win on the show. We all know his father is proudly looking over his son from the afterlife, and let’s hope that after releasing a mega-successful album, Iam gets to visit or settle in Hawaii again.
Did you expect Iam to win American Idol this year? How wholeheartedly did you follow the episodes? Tell us all about your favorite contestants in the show in the comments below.