Harry Connick Jr. 'Honored' to Be AMERICAN IDOL Judge
AMERICAN IDOL, FOX
Speaking on the news, the Grammy and Emmy Award winner shared, "I have always been a huge fan of American Idol and really enjoyed my time as a mentor on the show. And I am honored that they've asked me to be a judge this season. As an entertainer, I am truly excited to bring my perspective to AMERICAN IDOL, and to help emerging performers find their way."
Harry Connick Jr. is a rarity in the realm of entertainment, exemplifying excellence in every aspect of his multi-faceted career. He has won three Grammy Awards, two Primetime Emmy Awards and is a multiple-Tony Award nominee.
A New Orleans native, Connick began his career as a performer at the age of five. At 19, he signed with Columbia Records. His stunning piano technique and vivid musical imagination was easily recognized on his debut, self-titled album. Soon after, he released his follow-up album, "20," and then found multi-platinum success with the soundtrack to "When Harry Met Sally..."
Connick's continued musical success has spanned over the course of 29 albums, with sales totaling 28 million worldwide units. His most recent album, "Every Man Should Know," was released in June 2013.
In addition to his burgeoning music career, Connick also began acting professionally. Among his feature film credits are "Little Man Tate," "Copycat," "Hope Floats," "Memphis Belle," "Independence Day," "Life without Dick," "Mickey," "Basic," "P.S. I Love You," "New in Town" and "Dolphin Tale." His voiceover skills also were featured in "My Dog Skip" and "The Iron Giant." Next fall, he will be seen in "Dolphin Tale 2," the sequel to 2011's No. 1 hit family film.
On television, Connick is perhaps best known for his recurring role on "Will & Grace." He also appeared in an arc of "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit," and has graced audiences with his musical talents in several Primetime specials, including "Harry for the Holidays," the Emmy Award-winning PBS Specials "Only You in Concert" and "Harry Connick, Jr. in Concert on Broadway" and the animated tale "The Happy Elf."
His Broadway career boasts equal recognition, having received Tony Award nominations as both composer/lyricist for the musical "Thou Shalt Not" and as the lead in the Tony Award-winning revival of "The Pajama Game." He also has adapted "The Happy Elf" for children's theater, starred in the Broadway revival of "On a Clear Day You Can See Forever" and - on the 20th anniversary of his first Broadway concerts at the Lunt-Fontaine Theatre - brought his live show for an extended residency at the Neil Simon Theatre.
Not surprisingly, Connick has used his influence as an entertainer to further his charitable work. Following the devastation of Hurricane Katrina, he created, along with fellow musician and "New Orleanian" Branford Marsalis, the Musicians' Village in the Upper Ninth Ward. The village provides homes for musicians and other displaced citizens, a community center with a performance hall, recording studio and after-school facility for kids. His contributions to the post-Katrina effort have been acknowledged by a Redbook Strength and Spirit Award, an honorary degree from Tulane University and the 2012 Jefferson Award for Public Service.