When nine-year-old Angelica Hale first appeared on America’s Got Talent, she wowed the judges and audience with a truly spectacular rendition of Andre Day’s “Rise Up,” which earned her widespread recognition and social media fame.
After advancing to the next round of the competition, Hale said she was more nervous than ever, but you’d never know it. She carried herself like a pro, never losing her poise or charm.
“I so want to go to live shows!” said the charming nine-year-old in a backstage chat before her exit. “I’ve worked hard to get to this point, so I have to show them. I have to do my best.”
The little girl walked confidently across the stage in a pink dress, flared denim vest and purple lace-up sneakers, looking like “every girl” in America, and by that I mean simply adorable!
So when she stepped up to the microphone and began singing Alicia Keys’ “Girl on Fire,” her commanding voice came as a surprise to panelist Chris Hardwick, who missed her stunning performance in the first round.
Angelica’s shrill voice shook the sunlight from Hardwick and the entire audience was in awe and delight as they rose to their feet in unison to chant her name. Thus began a premature exchange between one of the judges and the 9-year-old.
“Do you remember what I told you the first time you sang?” judge Howie Mandel asked Angelica after her performance. The girl didn’t miss a beat and responded by saying, “You said I had a good chance of winning America’s Got Talent and Howie, I’ll never forget that.” To which Howie said, “You know something, Angelica? I will never forget you and I still haven’t changed my mind tonight.”
As the usually weird and quirky Simon Cowell, he admitted he was nervous before the show and didn’t think the youngster could pull it off, but admitted she proved him completely wrong. He looked Angelica in the eyes and said, “You did it, Angelica.”
Judge Hardwick had the biggest reaction of any judge on America’s Got Talent. He began, “I’m so amazed because you leave looking like this adorable little child. And then you open your mouth and say, ‘How do those tubes fit into that little body?’ You’re amazing!” Hardwick yelled as his eyes darted to the Golden Buzzer, giving everyone a sense of what was to come.
“Angelica, you are the chosen one! Hardwick announced excitedly as he pressed the button, sending a shower of sparkling confetti onto the stage as the stunned performer cried tears of joy.
This little girl has a very emotional story: when she was only four years old, her parents had to take her to the emergency room because of double pneumonia, and her kidneys stopped working. Her tearful father said they thought they were going to lose their baby girl until her mother proved to be the perfect donor and saved her life. Watch more of Angelica Hale’s emotional and dramatic story in this video.