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MAY
23
3 YEARS

'American Idol's' Jessica Sanchez on Coming in Second: 'I'm Relieved That This Whole Thing is Over' (Video)

Moments after her elimination, the season 11 runner-up acknowledges the song that may have lost her the competition and reflects on her reality show past.

Jessica Sanchez finale blue dress P
Michael Becker / FOX

American Idol runner-up Jessica Sanchez told reporters she was “kind of relieved that this whole this is over” after Phillip Phillips was crowned as the new Season 11 champion.

Sanchez also spoke about her pop ballad, “Nothing Changes,” which the judges didn’t love. In fact, moments earlier, in-house mentor Jimmy Iovine called the song a “bomb."

“I kind of agreed with them,” she told reporters. “We only had one day to pick a single. Now that I have time to put myself into my music, it’s going to be all me -- 100 percent me.”

STORY: 'American Idol' Final 2 Performance Night: 10 Things You Didn't See On TV

Sanchez later said she was happy for Phillips, and knew he was the victor before they announced his name. "I told him he was gonna win during Top 3 results show," she said, adding,“He has worked harder than all of us." “He’s been having to keep up with his health issues with his kidneys. He’s been through it all a lot more than us mentally and physically. ... I made top two and it's such a big accomplishment." 

In fact, Sanchez was more than ready for the Idol experience having competed on America's Got Talent at 11 years old. "It definitely prepared me for rejection," she told The Hollywood Reporter with a laugh, "Because I was rejected twice on that show. The cameras and the lights and the staging helped me, but this has been a totally different experience. 

STORY: 'American Idol': Pop Power Couple Jordin Sparks and Jason Derulo Bet on Who Will Win

The 16-year-old Chula Vista, Calif., has a clear vision of who she wants to be as an artist -- and it doesn’t include straight-up pop ballads.

“I want to be more like a Rihanna-Beyonce kind of thing, but I don’t want to compare myself to anybody. I want to be somebody new, too.” Her genre of choice? R&B with a hint of urban flavor. 

Sanchez said she enjoyed her time on Idol, but now that she “popped out of the Idol “bubble," she is ready to join her Season 11 alums on tour. As for her performance with Grammy-winning Artist and original Dreamgirls star Jennifer Holliday, Sanchez was still on a high.

“That was insane,” she said. “We went deep into our hearts and sang the heck out of that song.”

Watch THR's post-show interview with Sanchez below: 

Twitter: @micheleamabile