Onstage the Latter-day Saint singer shocked four viral fans who cried hysterically when he lost American Idol.
On Monday, May 2, Latter-day Saint David Archuleta appeared on The Great Idol Reunion, a one-hour special celebrating American Idol’s 20th birthday. The show featured some of the best-known past Idol contestants and judges looking back at the show’s run.
Back in 2008, David Archuleta’s loss on the show’s seventh season finale broke the hearts of fans across the country. And one group of devastated tweens came to exemplify that heartbreak.
After the show, six 11-year-old girls posted a video, titled “The Worst Day of My Life,” on YouTube, showing their reaction to Archuleta’s loss. The video captures the group responding to the announcement with dramatic shrieks and tears, even crumpling to the ground in complete devastation.
The video got Archuleta’s attention, and last year he even tweeted a video responding to the girls’ American Idol meltdown on the 13th anniversary of show. In the video he says, “Thinking about these girls. Hope they’re doing fine, wherever they are!”
Today marks 13 years since I lost American Idol. Thinking about these girls. Hope they're doing fine, wherever they are! 😃 pic.twitter.com/cCJiPAeFs7
— David Archuleta (@DavidArchie) May 21, 2021
Now, 14 years later, at least four of the girls are indeed doing just fine, and they were invited to the reunion show for a special surprise. Yahoo! Entertainment identified the four women—now 24 and 25 years old—as Natalie Blanock, Madison Shemansky, Kellie Duffey, and Natalie Burchesky.
On the reunion show, a clip of their 2008 YouTube video played, and then the four women were shown on stage with host Ryan Seacrest, dressed in T-shirts emblazoned with Archuleta’s face.
“That was one of the most gut-wrenching moments in these girls’ lives—and they’re here with us tonight,” Seacrest announced. He then asked the women, “Are you still fans of David?” The group confirmed that they still listen to Archuleta’s music and follow him on social media.
Then Seacrest told them, “I have a surprise for you,” and Archuleta emerged from offstage.
Luckily, no one crumpled to the ground this time. But the surprised women cheered excitedly, exclaiming “No way!” as Archuleta embraced each one and admired their T-shirts.
Seacrest then explained that the singer had recently undergone vocal surgery and would not be able to sing or speak on the show. But Archuleta pulled out his phone and played a message using text-to-speech.
“Hi Ryan, it’s great to see you again and everyone. I have been using my phone to talk for the last two months.” Archuleta then gestured to the four women as his phone recited, “Thanks for creating such a fun and memorable moment for me and for everyone else. Sorry I didn’t win.” The group then responded with good-natured laughter.
Watch the full video on YouTube or in the player below.