It was an emotional night on The Glee Project yesterday, with a talented final three — Ali, Aylin and Blake. After one final group number and a last-chance performance from all three, with tunes of their own choosing, Ryan Murphy was left with one very difficult decision. (Spoiler Alert!) Blake Jenner came away as the winner. After the show, there was a live webchat on Oxygen.com moderated by casting director Robert Ulrich and Glee guest star/Atlanta Housewife NeNe Leakes. Joining them in the studio were Blake, Ali, and Aylin, as well as Lily and Michael. The rest of the contestants popped in via webcam throughout the chat.
EW listened in to round up some of the contenders’ buzziest quotes.
Blake’s thoughts after he won: “[There were] so many emotions at once. I’m sure my mom is crying at home. I’m so grateful.”
Ali’s feelings on the finale: “Watching the finale, I still felt so nervous reliving it. Being a part of The Glee Project has changed my life. We met the most incredible people, and I feel on top of the world, ready to move on to the next thing.”
Aylin’s thoughts on being a role model: “I feel like people who come from my background aren’t represented on TV. Like Charlie said [during the finale], after 9/11… I wanted to be the person to break the mold. Throughout the course of the show, I hope I broke the mold for people like me.”
What Lily was most proud of: “I felt really good in my solo performances on national television. And you can’t ask for more than that. Being able to show what we worked so hard for. Coming back to the finale [so soon after being eliminated] was really difficult; Michael really helped me. I wouldn’t have made it through that week without Michael. Can’t complain.”
Michael auditioned because of a random plane meet-up with Robert. Michael shared that when he was 17 (prior to the first season of Glee Project), he ran into Robert on a plane and Robert, seeing a “[cute] kid with a guitar,” asked him to audition. While he was too young at first, he eventually made it onto the show.
What Aylin’s family thought of her story: “My family is great, but I got a lot of hate from other people [in my community]. They would say ‘You’re not really Muslim.’… I brush it off because I am who I am and I have absolutely no problem with it.”
Ali’s biggest fear: “My biggest fear is someone thinking I can’t do what everyone else is doing. So I used to overcompensate. The Glee Project has helped me realize that I am enough.”
Favorite singers. Blake: Gavin DeGraw and Michael Jackson. Aylin: Katy Perry and Amy Winehouse. Ali: Kristin Chenoweth (Ali sang the Broadway tune Chenoweth made famous, “Popular,” as her last-chance performance).
EW will post a one-on-one interview with Blake Jenner later this morning.