Kyle Sandilands raises eyebrows with his ‘journey’ comments to an Aboriginal singer on Australian Idol: ‘I love you Kyle, but please just stop’

  • Australian Idol’s Royston Sagigi-Baira performed on show
  • Sandilands, one of the judges, said he was ‘magnificent’ 
  • Said he knew his ‘journey’ as he knows other Aboriginal people

Radio star Kyle Sandilands has copped flack for comments he made to Australian Idol finalist Royston Sagigi-Baira after a performance on the hit show.

Sandilands, who is a judge alongside Harry Connick Jr, Meaghan Trainor and Amy Shark, told the 24-year-old Indigenous Australian that he knew about ‘his journey’ because he has Aboriginal relatives.

‘A lot of people don’t know this about me, but my stepbrother and stepsister are Indigenous and my sister also has three or four Aboriginal foster children and I know your journey and it’s not always an easy journey, but you have shone like a bright sun on this stage every time’ Kyle said.

However, some Indigenous viewers said Kyle’s comments to relate to the singer made them feel uncomfortable, after Indigenous broadcaster NITV shared a video of the moment to TikTok.

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‘Just no! As a fair skinned Wiradjuri woman, I have no idea the struggles my browned skin sister faces every day,’ one claimed.

‘It doesn’t matter what colour skin, how can you possibly know this person’s journey when they are a stranger to you? What are degrading statement,’ another said.

‘Trust a narcissistic person to bring it back to themselves when a person of colour is having their moment in the spotlight,’ a third added.

‘A real struggle in your Bentley I’m sure,’ a fourth added.

A fifth said: ‘I feel so uncomfortable when people start doing this. What you want a medal?’ 

Another claimed: ‘He may know of our peoples journey, but not the actual journey or tribulations by actual experiences.’

Kyle comments caused a stir on social media with many saying they were 'awkward'

Kyle comments caused a stir on social media with many saying they were ‘awkward’

Sandilands on the show

Royston has made it to the finale

Sandilands said Royston’s performance was ‘magnificent’ then said he understood his journey because his step-siblings and ‘three or four’ of his sister’s foster children are Aboriginal

‘I love you Kyle but please just stop,’ wrote another. ‘ I have black and Asian friends and still don’t know their journey.’

Sandilands has had a colourful history as a judge on the show – once famously telling Australian Idol star Jessica Mauboy to ‘lose her jelly belly’.

He was dropped from the show in 2009 because producers felt his edgy Kyle and Jackie O radio show on KIISFM was incompatible with the family theme of the show, but was re-hired for the reboot due to his popularity.

Sandilands called Royston’s most recent performance that landed him a spot in the final three ‘magnificent’.

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‘You’re one-in-a-million. People love you,’ he said.

Royston will compete with Phoebe Stewart and Josh Hannan in the Australian Idol grand finale.

Phoebe Stewart, Josh Hannan and Royston will compete in the Australian Idol grand finale

Phoebe Stewart, Josh Hannan and Royston will compete in the Australian Idol grand finale


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