Jeff Riedel
Next month, David Archuleta is off to the United Kingdom for his first British tour

A year ago today, David Archuleta was just one of the top nine finalists on "American Idol."

Tonight, the 18-year-old from Murray brings his first headlining concert tour to a close, performing for local fans at the E Center. Next month, he's off to the United Kingdom for his first British tour.

The homecoming marks the end of a tour that began Feb. 24 in Virginia Beach, Va., and continued along the East Coast, before cutting cross-country in March.

Last year's "Idol" runner-up returns home with a hit album (titled "David Archuleta") that featured the hit single "Crush."

Needless to say, the young singer has had time to polish his live show, but at the same time, has worked his voice to extremes.

So, in keeping with a mandate to rest his voice when he's not on stage, the Deseret News conducted an e-mail interview with Archuleta:

Deseret News: How has the tour been going so far?

David Archuleta: It's been great! I've been having a really fun time traveling and performing at all the different cities. The band and crew have been really great guys to work with, too.

DN: What was the most surprising thing you came across when preparing for the tour?

DA: I was surprised how quickly everything was put together. I only had time to rehearse for a few days the week before tour even started. So I was really impressed with how dedicated everyone was. Everything worked out great.

DN: What have been some of the challenges of getting this show together?

DA: One of the challenges was singing an entire set of songs. I didn't think my voice could handle singing that many songs, since a few years ago I could only handle singing a couple of songs — after the vocal paralysis situation, haha. I've really improved with my endurance over the last year, and even within the last couple of months it's gotten a lot better.

DN: What are the rewards?

DA: Being able to be up on that stage is sooo amazing! Even though the set lasts over an hour, it feels like 15 minutes. I'm always like, oh — we're already done? It goes by so quickly.

It's really hard to describe how it feels to be up on stage singing and feeling that crowd's energy. It's so good to see the audience having a good time, singing along and getting into the songs, too.

DN: How do you keep your voice in shape? I understand you have to rest it most of the day, but are there any other ways you protect it?

DA: I've actually been trying to stay healthy. I've been exercising, and making sure I don't eat a lot of unhealthy foods haha. That actually has a major effect on my voice, and it can get really scary if I have a show to do and I'm sick.

I also do a lot of voice exercises, and make sure I get a lot of rest.

DN: Can you tell me five things about yourself that we may not know: i.e. favorite artist, musician, TV show, movie and vacation spot?

DA: Hmm — I've said pretty much everything when I've been asked these questions.

I love Thai food. Some of my favorite artists are Jason Mraz, Sara Bareilles, Adele, Natasha Bedingfield, Eva Cassidy and John Mayer.

My favorite movie is 'Finding Nemo,' and I love cartoons.

I have fallen in love with Hawaii! I was there to sing the national anthem at the Pro Bowl this year, and it was awesome!

If you go...

What: David Archuleta

Where: E Center, 3600 S. Decker Lake Drive

When: March 27, 7:30 p.m.

How much: $25-$35

Phone: 801-325-7329

Web: www.ticketmaster.com

E-mail: [email protected]