Ashley Ferl, the American Idol uberfan, doesnâ€™t use many words, but she doesnâ€™t need to.
Whe talking about Sanjaya Malakar, little Ashley's tears speak for themselves.
â€œI just think heâ€™s so phenomenal,â€ the 13-year old told Meredith Vieira on TODAY. â€œI just canâ€™t believe I saw him live. It was like a dream come true.â€
Dressed in an American Idol t-shirt and well-stressed jeans splitting at the knees, Ashley clasped her hands tightly against her knees as she talked about her passion for the popular FOX show and her transcendent joy at being able to attend Tuesday nightâ€™s show.
She had gotten tickets after attending a dress rehearsal and being moved to tears at meeting her favorite performer, Malakar, who has been critically abused, but has survived on youthful good looks and androgynous charisma.
Asked whether she felt her tears had helped Sanjaya survive, she replied, â€œI have no idea.â€
Her mom, Stacy, had no fewer reservations, saying, â€œI think it may have had something to do with it.â€
Winning the hearts â€” and votes â€” of little girls
Stacy Ferl says her daughter is a typical American girl, and it is true that the core audience for Idol is kids at the cusp of pubescence. â€œI would say her room is half â€˜SpongeBobâ€™ and half American Idol, â€ Stacy said.
Ashley votes often for her favorite Idol, but she said she also votes for â€œMelinda Doolittle, Gina Glocksen and Jordin Sparks.â€
Though she would love to be on the show herself some day, her mother says Ashley isnâ€™t a singer, and, the girl admitted, â€œI probably wouldnâ€™t make it far.â€