Slidell singing sensation headed to Hollywood on American Idol

NEW ORLEANS -- If you watched Monday night's American Idol then you saw a local singing sensation from Slidell named Kaitlann Runnels.  Runnels got that special golden ticket to Hollywood from celebrity judges Katy Perry, Luke Bryan, and Lionel Richie.

News with a Twist Reporter Kenny Lopez got the scoop on what her American Idol journey has been like so far!

Runnels, 17, goes to Pope John Paul High School in Slidell.  She's also a hostess at her dad's restaurant, "Palmetto's on the Bayou."   Singing and songwriting are her true passions, so she auditioned for American Idol when auditions were held at Mardi Gras World in October.

"I was nervous.  In my mind, I was like Lionel Richie is talking to me with his beautiful big smile.  Katy Perry is staring at me with her beautiful face, and Luke was just being Luke.  I got my golden ticket to Hollywood from them.  They all said yes.  After the auditions were over, I treated myself to Raising Cane's."

Kaitlann's mother Angie Runnels said, "I'm so proud of her for following her dreams and making it happen."

"It is going to be so crazy.  I've never been to Hollywood.  I'm a Louisiana gal making her way," the singer/songwriter said.

Kaitlann was recently accepted to Loyola University in New Orleans.   Her audition song was "Me & Mr. Jones" by Amy Winehouse.

For more information about American Idol, click HERE.