Mandan girl headed to Hollywood for American Idol

MANDAN, N.D. - Everyone wants a golden ticket to success, for one Mandan teen that ticket came with a lot of hard work and dedication.

Many students walk the halls of Mandan High School, but it's rare to get a moment like this.

"Still in shock and it's been four days," said Brianna Helbling, headed to Hollywood for American Idol competition.

"It's a very proud moment and we cried like crazy when we found out," Pam Helbling Schafer.

Brianna said: "Before I knew it she was writing my name on the golden ticket and that was like a dream come true itself. I couldn't believe it."

More than 400 people auditioned for American Idol's golden ticket in Fargo. Brianna Helbling is one of five people that advanced to the next round.

The 16-year-old singer has had a love for music since she was seven years old.

"it's kind of my escape for everything," said Brianna.

Whether it can take an hour or a year to create an original song, she also plays covers.

"It's a crazy feeling when it all just comes together and works out," said Brianna.

Brianna is not only a solo artist, she joined the outsiders this summer and has performed 50 times total since June.

"It's kind of like an adrenaline rush, once you start you don't want to stop, that's why I work so hard because I want that feeling for the rest of my life," said Brianna.

Although Brianna is only a junior, she's strumming up her future.

"One day, fingers crossed for a record deal, and I'm going to work super hard for that and not give up," said Brianna.

"It's just exciting to see this journey she's on and see where it goes," said Brian Schafer, Brianna's dad

"She loves it, that's the big thing she's dedicated what she does because she loves what she does and that plays a big part in how well she does in her music and how she's been able to come and how far she's going to go," said Josh Clark, Jr.

Brianna is working on an original song album, but for now...

"I'm going to Hollywood," said Brianna.

"We all support her back at home and be cheering her on but no matter what happens, she got a bright future ahead," said Kaylee Barbie, friend.

Brianna will be up against some tough competition in Hollywood but if anyone could be the next American Idol, it's Brianna Helbling.

Brianna heads to Hollywood on Sept. 24.