‘American Idol’ Star Huntergirl Lights Up the CMA Fest Stage: PHOTOS

by Samantha Whidden

On Thursday (June 9th), “American Idol” season 20 runner-up Huntergirl took to the stage of the 2022 CMA Fest in Nashville, Tennessee. 

The “American Idol” crew took to Twitter and shared some snapshots of Huntergirl’s performance. “The amazing Huntergirl [shined] like a star on the CMA Fest stage!” the tweet reads.

Huntergirl also took to her Instagram account some snapshots of her performance. “OH MY GOSH WHAT JUST HAPPENED?! I can’t believe I got to play on the Chevy Riverfront Stage at CMA fest. I am freaking out!! Huge thank you to Jimmie Allen for inviting me on stage to sing ‘Red Bird’. You are the best! I have dreamed of playing CMA Fest for forever.”

Huntergirl’s CMA performance comes just one day after she and “American Idol” season 20 winner Noah Thompson reunited at Nashville Bluebird Cafe. The duo was seen with music producer, Jimmy Robbins. Both Huntergirl and Thompson also spoke about their plans to break into the music industry. 

“I’m not trying to be a pop-country artist,” Thompson told the Herald-Dispatch. “I don’t want to be a pop-country artist. That’s not me. That’s why I didn’t wear certain clothes. I still wear my boots, my blue jeans, and my flannel — that’s just me. I want to be a soulful, rock-country-type deal.”

Huntergirl also told TV Insider that she wants to put out new music, go on tour and sing songs. “[I want to] say thank you to everyone who supported me through this entire year. I want to hear my song on the radio. I would love to play the Opry one day. Doing all these things I’ve dreamed of my entire life.”

Huntergirl Describes ‘American Idol’ as Being the ‘Hardest Thing’ She’s Ever Done 

While speaking to TV Insider, Huntergirl revealed that “American Idol” was the hardest thing she has ever done in her life. “Getting to have Luke there to cheer me on meant everything. I’ve looked up to him since I was a little girl. There were moments when you are down, worried, or scared. We’re learning songs on the fly with a band, then we’re on TV. It was just a lot.”

Huntergirl further revealed that for the finale week she and the other “American Idol” contestants were running on no sleep to get everything done. “It has been a nerve-wracking experience. It was cool to get to this point because I didn’t think I would make it past the Nashville audition.”

Meanwhile, Huntergirl describes herself as her biggest critic and always trying to get better as she goes along. “It was crazy when they gave me the platinum ticket—I couldn’t believe it. There is pressure that comes with that, but it was overwhelmed by [the judges’] belief in me. My entire life, I wanted someone to see me and know that I wanted to do music. To have that meant a lot. I wanted to make them proud for giving me it in the first place.”