La vida local

Symphony Howlett hoping to make it all the way on ‘American Idol’

 

Symphony Music Howlett had an unforgettable 25th birthday on Wednesday. She made it through the Detroit auditions gauntlet on American Idol and is Hollywood-bound next month. The Palmetto Bay singer is no stranger to the Fox competition, having tried out in 2009.

“That’s when I first met Jennifer Lopez,” recalls Howlett, who changed up the routine this time around. “I kind of came back with a more powerhouse voice and different sound. I was more confident, knowing who I am as an artist. They liked it.”

Howlett, who attended Coral Reef Elementary, Southwood Middle School and New World School of the Arts, wants to go all the way now.

As her name suggests, she is inspired by all types of artists, from Fleetwood Mac and Etta James to Christina Aguilera and Celine Dion.

“Lately I’m getting into country,” says Howlett, whose go-to song is Gravity by Sara Bareilles. “I adore Rascal Flatts. Every song they play I can relate to somehow, some way.”

Currently hosting at Sushi Samba restaurant to make ends meets, she says her dream is to put out an album that has a “pop folk sound mixed with hip hop.”

How she best describes herself? “Demi Lovato meets [Kiwi singer] Lorde,” she says, adding with a laugh: “If they had a baby, that would be me!”

Winning Idol would allow her to live out a completely selfless dream: “I love working with kids and I want to inspire them.”

D.C. follies

Is Michelle Obama the coolest first lady ever? She's up there.

The newly minted 50-year-old showed that she can not only keep up with the president of the United States, but star basketball players as well.

In a new public service announcement for her anti obesity "Let's Move" campaign, we see Miami Heat Coach Erik Spoelstra interviewing Dwyane Wade and Ray Allen at The White House about how eating good food makes you a better athlete, etc. (President Obama welcomed the entire team to D.C. last Tuesday to honor last season's championship.)

In the middle of the interview, we witness photobombs from LeBron James holding a mini basketball hoop (which Mrs. Obama slam dunks); FLOTUS, eating an apple; and Chris Bosh, who exhibits how key it is to stay hydrated with a glass of water.

The NBA champs are then seen casually munching on fruit with Michelle to end the clip. See it here for a good laugh (and a nutrition tip or two): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dEJJFIM1m44

Say uncle

2 Live Crew legend Luther Campbell will be a guest on The Arsenio Hall Show 11 p.m. Friday on WSFL (CW). According to a release, Uncle Luke will “be discussing his plans for 2014 and beyond.” Uh-oh.

Madeleine Marr

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