Sponsored by:

Comment, blog & share photos

Log in | Become a member
The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Friday, May 14, 2004

Jasmine overwhelmed by aloha from local fans

By Zenaida Serrano
Advertiser Staff Writer

If "American Idol" finalist Jasmine Trias hadn't realized the extent of her home-state popularity, she probably has an inkling after arriving home yesterday morning to a media mob and a swarm of adoring devotees.

"American Idol" finalist Jasmine Trias signs autographs as she is whisked through Honolulu International Airport after her arrival from Los Angeles.

Deborah Booker • The Honolulu Advertiser

"When I got off the airplane today, I couldn't believe my eyes," Trias said yesterday. "There was so much support and there were so many people there — it just blew my mind. I just couldn't grasp how much support I had here, but now that I'm here, it's just amazing."

At the Honolulu International Airport, Trias was greeted at baggage claim by scores of fans with cameras and lei in hand, as media types jostled for position to get her in their sights.

"My life is never going to be the same, but it's such a dream come true," an overwhelmed Trias said.

Shining with perspiration under a pile of lei, Trias looked like a stylish diva, wearing a turquoise off-the-shoulder poncho over a yellow tank and jeans.

Between questions from the media, Trias shouted out to chanting and cheering fans: "Thank you, guys!" "Thank you so much!" "I love you guys so much!"

Trias had been flown to Honolulu by "American Idol." She flies back to Los Angeles tonight. While in Hawai'i, the show has been gathering footage of her with fans at the airport, at the governor's office and at the beach, among other locations. Scenes from her triumphant visit may be seen on an "American Idol" special Monday or future segments.

Among the well-wishers at the airport was Flo Reis, a friend of Trias' grandmother, who waited for Trias at the terminal with a lei.

"I'm here just to support her," said Reis, 46, of Wahiawa. "I just want to see her and take a picture because of my daughter."

Reis said her 10-year-old daughter, Jamila, is a "very, very big fan" who "sleeps with her (Jasmine) shirt on every night."

Jamila's father, Dino Reis, said his daughter feels a connection with Trias because Trias danced hula at Jamila's first birthday party, a performance the family videotaped and watch often.

"I should have gotten my daughter out of school," joked Dino Reis, 40.

Traveling with Trias was her father, Rudy Trias Jr., who is often seen on the show cheering for his daughter and flashing a shaka sign.

"I'm happy (to be home), even if for one day," Trias Jr. said. "I left here Feb. 28 and this is the first time I've been back."

Meeting the two at the airport was Trias' grandfather, Rudy Trias Sr. "I feel so proud," he said.

Shortly after noon, Trias left the airport in a stretch Ford Excursion limousine, then had "Hawaiian food" for lunch.

Jasmine Trias got the star treatment as she left Honolulu International Airport yesterday in a black stretch limousine.

Deborah Booker • The Honolulu Advertiser

"And I finally had rice!" Trias exclaimed with a big smile.

Trias then made a stop at the State Capitol, where Lt. Gov. James "Duke" Aiona proclaimed yesterday Jasmine Trias Day. Aiona presented the 17-year-old Mililani teen with the proclamation, as well as "lucky coins," including some extras for judges Simon Cowell, Paula Abdul and Randy Jackson, and host Ryan Seacrest.

"I know I speak on behalf of everyone ... everyone from the state of Hawai'i, in regards to how we feel how Jasmine has represented the state of Hawai'i in this competition," Aiona said.

But Trias said she thought her time was up Wednesday.

"I was kind of shocked," Trias said about making the cut. "I thought I was gonna go, but thank you so much for putting me through. You guys have been a great support."

"American Idol" producer Simon Lythgoe, who accompanied Trias on the trip, joked about how Trias really believed she was out of the competition.

"I just want everyone to know how sweet she is," Lythgoe said. "(Wednesday) she actually sent 'American Idol' a card and hundreds of macadamia nuts to all of the production staff, saying 'Thank you very much.' "

Trias also addressed the "American Idol 3 Tour," a nearly 50-city concert that has no Hawai'i dates set: It's being negotiated, she said.

"Even if I have to take a cut in my pay, I'll do it," she said. "I'm fighting for it."

Following her State Capitol visit, Trias signed autographs and greeted fans at Tower Records on Ke'eaumoku Street. Public appearances aside, Trias had other priorities in mind for her short stay before going back to Los Angeles.

"I want to go to the beach and surf and meet all my friends and go back to school," Trias said.

Trias said she wants to make the most of her homecoming before returning to Los Angeles tomorrow, when rehearsals for the next show begin.

But when it comes time to focus again on the competition, Trias said she's ready to give it her all.

"I am just going to sing my heart out, and I'm just going to prove to America that I can really be the American Idol," she said.

Reach Zenaida Serrano at zserrano@honoluluadvertiser.com or 535-8174.