In an Instagram post on Monday, the 17-year-old singer said that she was pulling out of the show “for personal reasons”, adding that it was the “hardest decision” she’s ever made.
Anderson made it into the Top 24 of season 20, with her pre-taped performance of Christina Perri’s Human aired on Sunday.
“For personal reasons, I’m unable to continue on American Idol. This has been one of the hardest decisions I’ve ever had to make, but I know it’s necessary,” she wrote.
“I’m so grateful to American Idol, the judges, the producers, the amazing contestants, and all the fans who have supported me.” She continued, “Thank you for giving me such an amazing opportunity to share my voice, chase my dreams, feel so much joy and happiness doing what I love, and make lifelong friends along the way.”
In a statement to People, a representative for American Idol producer Fremantle Media said they were “disappointed” by Anderson’s departure from the show. They added, “But we are excited to watch this celebratory 20th season unfold with incredible talent vying to be the next American Idol.”
“I don’t know how you haven’t been recruited,” Perry told her. “You check every box and a lot of all of them. Get ready to become your own hero.”
“Congratulations, you’ve answered our prayers,” said Richie.
“You might be the biggest star we’ve ever seen,” added Bryan. “No doubt, I believe top ten.”