The voting fans of "American Idol" have yet to embrace Elise Testone as much as they might, but that didn't prevent the Charleston music teacher from ascending to the next round on Thursday's episode.

The suspense ended early as Testone -- barely surviving in the "bottom three" for the past two weeks -- made the cut with Hollie Cavanagh and Skylar Lane in the program's first half-hour.

Testone's rousing performance in Wednesday's installment drew a standing ovation from the judges, with Jennifer Lopez exulting "Everyone's seeing your personality for the first time!" -- a reference to Testone's struggle with the "likability factor." She sang "Vienna," one of Billy Joel's least-known songs. But observers regarded it as her best performance of the season and perhaps the finest of the night.