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On Tuesday, Feb. 7, Kevin Covais belted out a version of Josh Gorban's You Raise Me Up that impressed American Idol judges so much they gave him the thumbs up onto the next round, narrowing the candidate pool to 48 contestants.

The following week he did it again. The Island Trees High School junior is now in the top 24 contestants on Fox's hit television show, American Idol.

Covais left Levittown for Hollywood on Feb. 10 to appear on last week's show. However, during his television debut on Feb. 7, he was at Island Trees High School being sworn into the National Honor Society.

"This tells you the type of kid and the type of family he has that the night that his performance was on, he was here at the Honor Society induction," Island Trees High School Principal Bill Kealy said. "This is the importance that his family puts on the education component of this kid's life."

Covais echoed this importance of family in an interview on www.idolonfox.com. When asked who he will thank first if he won, he replied, "my parents." His own personal American Idol is his father.

Covais is involved in the music and drama programs at Island Trees High School. The District Director of Fine and Performing Arts Peter Gibbons described Covais as a "wonderful young man who comes from a great family."

"He is a valuable member of the Island Trees music department in chorus and school theatrical productions," Gibbons added. "He makes us all proud."

Pending his advancement on American Idol, Levittowners may be able to see Covais perform as the lead in the Island Trees High School play Anything Goes on March 24-25.

According to the Island Trees School District, Covais was not permitted to speak with the Levittown Tribune due to a confidentiality agreement with the show.

Entering American homes through primetime television since 2002, American Idol is currently in its fifth season. Tens of thousands of singers audition at various cities, each hoping to become voted the next American Idol. After a series of performances Judges Simon Cowell, Paula Abdul and Randy Jackson narrow contestants down to 12 males and 12 females. A male and female performer will be "voted off" each week until viewers - through cellphone text messages and toll free phone calls - select the next American Idol. The winner is granted a recording contract. Contestants must be amateur performers, not under any current recording or talent contracts. Applicants ages 16-28 are eligible. For more information visit www.idolonfox.com.


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