Fans tuning in to American Idol on Sunday, May 8, 2022, witnessed a slight change to the telecast. As viewers prepared to watch the Top 7 contestants show off their singing chops, Ryan Seacrest made a concerning announcement.
Instead of all of the singers being able to perform live, one contestant, Fritz Hager, was judged based on his rehearsal footage. And since Fritz is a fan favorite, viewers have plenty of questions as to why that was the case. So, what exactly happened to Fritz Hager? Here's everything that we know.
Fritz Hager has tested positive for COVID-19.
COVID-19 strikes again! During the live show, Ryan made the announcement that both Fritz and Noah Thompson had unfortunately tested positive for COVID-19.
As a result, Fritz's rehearsal footage had to stand in for his live performances, and Noah had to sing from his hotel room, per USA Today.
According to Hollywood Life, "Ryan explained that Noah started feeling ill earlier in the week and would be performing virtually from his hotel room." On the flip side, Fritz’s symptoms began closer to the live show, which prompted producers to use his rehearsal footage in place of his two live performances.
Fritz, Noah, and the other Top 7 singers were tasked with a TikTok challenge: sing a song that has gone viral on the platform, or sing one they've already performed on the video-sharing app. After that, each contestant sang a song in honor of Mother's Day.
Fritz reportedly sang an original song as his viral TikTok track. Hollywood Life shares that Fritz also played the electric guitar while he sang with the band. Following his performance, the three judges —Katy Perry, Luke Bryan, and Lionel Richie — gave Fritz a standing ovation.
Fritz video-called in to chat with the judges and host Ryan to announce that he was feeling “good” but is ready to return to the stage.
When will Fritz return to the 'American Idol' stage?
Now that fans are aware of Fritz's positive COVID-19 diagnosis, many are wishing him well and are looking forward to his return. However, there is no telling when exactly Fritz will be back performing live. If Fritz makes it through to the next round and is in good health, he should be back on stage in no time.