Campbelltown high school student Riley Lattuga wowed Australian Idol judges during Monday night’s show, earning a rare standing ovation from Kyle Sandilands and three swift “Yes” votes.

Sandilands told Lattuga after the audition, “Being a judge on this show, we’re expected to listen, give advice, give you some improvement tips, when really, all I wanna do is this,” proceeding to stand up and applaud Lattuga’s performance.

While Lattuga did not receive the golden ticket for his audition, the judges were all stunned by his cover of Calum Scott’s You Are The Reason, in disbelief that he was only 16 years old.

Music has been an integral part of Lattuga’s life since his early childhood. He remembers being particularly anxious as a child, and nothing seemed to be able to calm him down.

He was told by a psychiatrist that he had two options: a) start therapy or b) find an outlet. So, at eight years old, Riley started singing lessons, finding that outlet in music. From then, he knew it was something he was interested in pursuing.

A featured artist at School Spectacular, Lattuga is incredibly grateful for the chance Idol has given him to pursue his passion for music. He said, “Idol was an amazing experience and opportunity.”

His mother, Tammy Lattuga, said, “We’re so incredibly proud of Riley. He works so hard, he’s passionate but most of all he’s super humble.

“We got to watch tonight’s episode with so many wonderful family and friends and we just feel so blessed by the amount of love and support Riley has around him.”

Riley has just started Year 12 at Campbelltown Performing Arts. He said, “I plan to focus on finishing school first, but I also want to continue pursuing my love for music.”

For those who missed it, you can catch Riley’s performance here on 7plus: https://7plus.com.au/australian-idol 

–  Emily Kaine

Images courtesy Australian Idol on 7. 

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