'American Idol': Hollie Cavanagh on her elimination - 'I just kind of knew'
"Honestly, if you'd asked me a couple of weeks ago I would've been upset and in tears, but you can't really complain when you are at the Top 4," she tells Zap2it backstage after her elimination. "There were so many people previously in the competition that would have died to have been in this spot, so I am proud of myself at this point."
That's the right attitude to take -- and she had all day to get to that point. "I woke up this morning with a little gut feeling -- I just kind of knew. I was talking to Josh[ua Ledet] about it all morning and all day saying how I felt and he told me to shut up. I was like 'just watch!' I told my family and they said regardless to stop crying about it because you're at the Top 4! Everyone is proud of me, so..."
Although Cavanagh's best buddy on the show was devastated at the elimination of his BFF, she says she doesn't know why Ledet was crying so hard when they'll see each other again in a matter of days when finale rehearsals begin. "I don't know why the boy was crying, I'll get to see him in like two days!"
Her Bottom 2 buddy Phillip Phillips gave her a long hug after the results were announced, and Cavanagh says he whispered words of support during their embrace. "He said 'don't let this get to you; you are going to be amazing. This is not something that will bring you down.' I am so happy for Phillip. He is so humble and he deserves to be there."
Overall, Cavanagh is proud of her progress from her initial audition in Season 10 to her eventual Top 4 finish in Season 11. " This year I was very much like 'Oh, okay, I don't know if I can do this,' I was still confident but at the same time, you hear all these people singing and there's always a voice that pops out and you're like, 'I have to beat that?' But once I got going, you learn that it's about you and yourself."
She continues: "You can't think about what other people are doing or what this person's doing, you have to just worry about yourself -- you have to stay focused and remember why you're here. I just felt myself getting more confident each week. I'm learning, and I'm learning every day. It's been a lot of fun."
The judges also had kind words once the cameras stopped rolling. "They were so nice," she says. "They said how proud they were of me and how far I had come. Now I'm just looking to the future and see what the future brings. I don't want to look down as I have no regrets -- I saw myself grow through the whole process and I'm proud of myself. I don't take anything back."
Cavanagh gets very diplomatic when asked who she thinks will win. "At this point, I am exactly with America. I have no idea."