Frenchie Davis, the big-voiced “American Idol” contestant who found success on Broadway in “Rent,” will undergo surgery to remove a vocal cord polyp.
Davis said she’s eager to take care of the condition that’s begun to cause tiredness and hoarseness after performances. But she’s apprehensive.
“I’ve talked to other singers who had surgery. One girl said her voice went up. Others’ voices got clearer. I’m just excited to see and a little nervous, of course. It’s still surgery,” Davis told The Associated Press.
Her main concern is the risk of losing her range, she said, but the surgeon has assured her that won’t happen. Doctors had been monitoring the polyp on her left vocal cord; when it grew, they advised surgery to avoid long-term damage.
The condition likely is from overuse and singing improperly, Davis said.
“I was doing eight shows a week of ‘Rent’ for four years. When I had a break from ‘Rent,’ I was using it to sing elsewhere,” she said. “Now I need a vocal coach to make sure I’m singing properly so it doesn’t come back.”
The surgery is scheduled for the end of April; recovery will take about a month. That will allow Davis to go ahead with a national tour of “Ain’t Misbehavin’,” co-starring “Idol” winner Ruben Studdard. It’s set to begin this fall in New York.
In 2003, Davis was dropped from “Idol” because of a previous appearance on an adult Web site. In contrast, the Fox talent show took no action this season when contestant David Hernandez’s stint as a nightclub stripper was revealed or when racy photos of Antonella Barba surfaced last season on the Internet.
“I guess I had to be thrown to the wolves to afford these other contestants the luxury of being judged on their talent,” said Davis, 28. “I guess that’s what needed to happen.”
It was “interesting,” she added, that she was punished for something she did at age 19.