“American Idol” is no stranger to the Tampa Bay area. The Idol tour has stopped in downtown Tampa in years past. Jessica Sierra (Tampa-season 4), Michael Lynche (St. Petersburg-season 9), Jeremy Rosado (Valrico-season 11), and Shannon Magrane (Tampa-season 11) have all been finalists. Now there is another who hails from the Sun Coast region in Naples, due south of Tampa. Lazaro Arbos, 21, has received a significant amount of press because of his backstory. Thursday night's “American Idol” on FOX saw the last of the so-called “sudden death” round. This took place in Las Vegas at The Mirage for the remaining the 10 male contestants.
Tampa Bay viewers with Bright House Networks saw Lazaro and the others perform on the local affiliate WTVT, channel 14. The Cuban born singer’s compelling story is his stutter. He moved to Naples with his family when he was 10 years old. Since his first moment with the judges at the Chicago auditions, all eyes have been on him since. During the Las Vegas round Thursday night, Lazaro performed Idol judge Keith Urban’s song “Tonight I Wanna Cry.” Nearly closing out the show he was second to last in the line-up. This was not Lazaro's best performance, according to all the judges, yet he's been selected as one of the five contestants moving on to next week’s semifinals. The Top 10 men will perform on Wednesday, March 6 for your votes.