Reagan High School grad lands audition on ‘American Idol’

Dawson Rice, aka Dawson Wayne, was one of 350 singers to audition in front of celebrity judges

LAS VEGAS, NV - JULY 29: An illuminated American Idol sign is displayed during the American Idol Live! 2018 tour at the Orleans Arena on July 29, 2018 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Gabe Ginsberg, Photo by Gabe Ginsberg/Getty Images)

SAN ANTONIO – Fans of “American Idol” can expect to see a San Antonio face in this new season.

The North East Independent School District said Reagan High School graduate Dawson Rice beat out thousands of people who auditioned via Zoom and made it to an on-air audition.

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Rice, who performs as Dawson Wayne, was one of 350 singers to audition in front of celebrity judges Luke Bryan, Katy Perry and Lionel Richie.

The 21st season of “American Idol” premiered on Sunday night. People can watch the show to see how Rice’s audition went — and if he made it to Hollywood.

According to NEISD, Rice graduated from Reagan in 2020.

As a Rattler, he was pit captain and drum major for the marching band. He participated in Soundsations and Chamber Choir and performed on-stage in “Hello Dolly” and “Titanic.”

For his performance in “Titanic,” he won a $4,000 scholarship in the Best Male Lead in a High School Musical Competition category at the Joci Awards.

He is now a student at Brigham Young University.

“He wants to give a very special thank you to everyone involved in the Reagan HS Fine Arts program,” NEISD said in a Facebook post. “He says they played an essential role in his journey.”

“American Idol” airs on ABC at 7 p.m. on Sundays.

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About the Author

Rebecca Salinas is an award-winning digital journalist who joined KSAT in 2019. She reports on a variety of topics for KSAT 12 News.

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