The “American Idol” journey of Portland drag queen Conor Tubbs has come to an end.

Tubbs, who performs in the Portland area under the name Cherry Lemonade, said Friday he did not advance beyond the show’s “Hollywood Week” episode that aired Thursday.

Tubbs has been a contestant on “American Idol” since the new season began in early January, and had even announced his involvement on Portland radio stations. But now his time on “American Idol” has ended, without him getting any significant screen time.

“I’m keeping my spirits up and preparing for the new adventures that this experience has offered up. My career is blossoming and I couldn’t have done it without the support of my friends, family and fans,” wrote Tubbs, 27, in an email to the Press Herald on Friday. “I’m glad I got to represent Maine on an international scale as a proud member of the GLBTQ community, and I don’t intend on stopping now.”

Tubbs was not seen being cut during Thursday’s epsiode, but at this point in the “American Idol” season not every contestant is shown every week. People who looked carefully could catch a glimpse of Tubbs, but he was not seen singing.

Besides announcing his “American Idol” involvment on Portland radio, Tubbs hosted an “American Idol” viewing party at Styxx nightclub in Portland in January. Styxx is a club where Tubbs performs and hosts, and he wanted friends to be able watch him. Then he seemed stunned when he did not appear on that episode.

Fox publicists confirmed that Tubbs advanced to the show’s “Hollywood Week” rounds, meaning he advanced beyond the thousands of people who competed at regional auditions to become one of about 200 hopefuls left.

Tubbs advanced to the “Hollywood Week” round during the audition process last year for episodes that are currently airing.

He first auditioned in Portland in July, then in Kansas City, before advancing to Hollywood. One of his audition songs was “Rehab” by Amy Winehouse.

Over the next few weeks the “American Idol” field will be pared further, to 48 and then 24 singers. The winner will be picked in May.

Ray Routhier can be contacted at 791-6454 or at:

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