Teens: Carly Rose Sonenclar ELIMINATED (2nd Place)
Hometown: Westchester, NY
Mentored by: Britney Spears
About her: A trained theater performer, this precocious 13-year-old has already done Broadway (as the young Cosette in Les Miserables), toured nationally (as Carrie in Little House on the Prairie The Musical) and sung the national anthem for the New York Knicks, the L.A. Dodgers and at the U.S. Open. She’s also done TV (PBS’ The Electric Company) and film (2008's The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants 2). Perhaps not surprisingly (given all of her experience), her rendition of Nina Simone's "Feeling Good" during her audition inspired a standing ovation from both the audience and the judges. Still, she seemed genuinely surprised and grateful when Spears put her through to the Top 16.
Why she got cut: It must have been a tight finish because Sonenclar's talent was celebrated throughout the season. TMZ reports that the young girl's mom pegs the loss to LeAnn Rimes' bizarre behavior during a duet with Carly Rose the night before the finale. The good news is the sweet teen is young and beyond talented -- no doubt she'll get far in her career no matter what!