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American Idol

American Idol 2013: Stephanie Schimel Vs. Rachel Hale — Was the Right Girl Sent Home?

There was an interesting new twist in the American Idol 2013 Hollywood Week finale this season. The Season 12 judges needed to get down to 40 contestants for next week's Las Vegas rounds, so they had two singers they weren't sure about do a sing-off. One of the head-to-heads featured Stephanie Schimel vs. Rachel Hale. Let’s take a look...

Stephanie caused a stir from her very first audition in Chicago, as Keith Urban loved her, calling her version of “Dream A Little Dream” a cross between Carrie Underwood and Gwen Stefani -- a high compliment to be sure. Nicki Minaj, however, wasn’t seeing the big deal, and she joked that she was angry that Stephanie dared to wear the same shade of eyeshadow as her.

During Hollywood Week, Stephanie Schimel botched the lyrics to her group song so badly, she even told cameras she couldn’t believe she got through. There almost seemed to be a bit too much nonchalance about it, no?

But when the judges asked her to sing for her spot in the Top 20 and she sang Phillip Phillips’ “Home,” we thought her take on it was stellar. And it seemed, once again, that Keith was impressed, too.

Then there was the eternally happy Rachel Hale, who always smiles and giggles about -- well -- everything, since her first audition in Long Beach.

Even when she was asked to sing for her spot, she joked about the fact that the judges didn’t like her solo performance. It was interesting to consider that she, like Stephanie, took on a song by an Idol alum, singing Haley Reinhart’s “Undone.”

In the end, the judges chose Rachel over Stephanie? Who would you have chosen?

02.16.2013 / 04:11 AM EDT by Marnie Brodersen
Related: American Idol

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