When Do 'American Idol' Auditions End?

American Idol has been the mothership of all reality-competition series for as long as I can remember, but fans seem to have given up on it over the years, perhaps because some fans are constantly wondering when Idol is done with the audition part of each season. Now Idol is

stronger than ever for its fourteenth season with a star-studded panel of judges and one who can finally fill Simon Cowell's shoes. Harry Connick Jr., known to the hopeful auditioning artists as "Hatchet Harry," told USA Today that he and returning judges Jennifer Lopez and Keith Urban are on a mission to find performers who are more ready for the competition this season on Idol . Idol is making some necessary changes in an effort to reign in more viewers, but the star-seeking competition will premiere Jan. 7 with three weeks of its traditional auditions until the week of Jan. 22.

With five audition cities and the return of the American Idol bus-tour auditions, the returning judges are bound to find some promising contestants. If the competition can bring back the ratings and the voters it once had, there's no reason that Idol can't find the next Kelly Clarkson. Last year's auditions rewarded 212 talented hopefuls with the golden

that could mean everything, and the ratings still fell short. But, when the auditions air over the next three weeks, we might meet the next American Idol superstar in any one of these three promising cities.

Nashville, Tenn.

Since country music is pretty much America's favorite genre these days, Nashville is the first place I'd look if I were a talent scout. Nashville is where you find the Kelly Clarksons, Chris Daughtrys, Carrie Underwoods, and Scotty McCreerys of the world. When I hear "Nashville" I think "Hollywood of country-rock music." Personally, this is the city that seems the most promising as far as finding season fourteens top competitors goes. I can see the southern 20-something mama's boy with the blue eyes and the acoustic guitar already.

San Francisco, Calif.

San Francisco is probably the most likely city to find all the crazies and costumed weirdos that we love about American Idol. But it's also where the judges will find all the determined young hopefuls who we find out gave up everything to pursue their music dreams. For a lot of them, this is their one

at stardom.

Long Island, N.Y.

Like San Francisco, New York also tends to attract the crazies, but that doesn't mean there aren't incredibly talented people out there just waiting for a chance to be noticed. New York auditions are always promising, because that's where we get the tri-state trifecta.

Auditions were also held in Minneapolis and New Orleans and the "Audition

" stopped in more than ten cities across the country. Last season, 212 people left their auditions with golden tickets and its likely this season's auditions will see a similar return. We can only hope whoever makes it to the top has staying power, too.

Images: Giphy (2)