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American Idol: 12 Perform Tonight

Feb. 17 2009, Published 6:24 a.m. ET

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American Idol has shaken things up this season with a brand new judge and new format and tonight, more changes are coming.

Here's the scoop:

Of the top 36 contestants, only 12 will perform tonight, six guys and six girls.

Then after the performances, America will vote for the first time this season.

Tomorrow on Idol, the nine singers with the lowest number of votes will get the boot, so only three will move on to the next round.

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This will be the scenerio for the next three weeks. So, if you're counting along at home, that means by the end of the third week, nine contestants will still be alive. At that point, the judges will pick the final three contestants and that will make up the top 12.

Got it?

Idol airs at 8pm Eastern Time tonight.

Click here to see the 12 contestants who will perform tonight.

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