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She was among the few chosen from thousands of hopefuls, and as her fellow contestants were voted off week after week, she remained.On the final episode, Fantasia put everything she had left in her heart into a song called "I Believe." That night more than 60 million viewers lit up the phone lines to vote, and Fantasia became the third American Idol. Since then she's released two albums, Free Yourself and Fantasia; written a book, Life Is Not a Fairy Tale; and watched her life story be made into a TV movie.Some teachers believed in me, but I just wasn't focused on school—I was into the music and trying to please my dad.Oprah: When you were growing up, did you ever feel pretty? I got picked on because my lips were so big—my head just recently caught up with them! I knew I couldn't just get a job in a store, because I wasn't good at counting, and I didn't want to mess up anybody's money. I was crying because someone had finally gotten something he wanted.When I was about 9, an elderly woman came up to me, crying, and said, "I want you to know that you touched me." My mother later told me that God had given me a gift, but I had low self-esteem.
But something in Fantasia refused to accept that this was all her life—and her daughter Zion's life—would be.
By the end, there is not a dry eye in the house as she sings Celie's famous refrain: "I'm beautiful, and I'm here." Oprah: When did you first realize that you had a voice that could move people?
Fantasia: I've been singing in church since I was little; my grandmother is a pastor.
Her most recent victory was taking on the role of Celie in the Broadway musical The Color Purple.
Since I discovered Alice Walker's novel years ago, I've loved this story of the triumph of the spirit in all its forms—as a book (it remains one of my favorites), a movie (I played Sofia), and a Broadway musical (I co-produced it).
Kendall and the singer met in 2015 and married in 2015 after only knowing each other for three weeks.“I Love You so much that I’d do it over and over and over again!