Grace Vanderwaal became a household name overnight after Simon Cowell predicted that she would become the next Taylor Swift following her America’s Got Talent audition. Fellow AGT judge Howie Mandel agreed with Cowell and gave the 12-year old the coveted Golden Buzzer, sending her directly to the live show.
It’s hard to believe that the New York native originally didn’t want to audition at all. In fact, her dream was to be on American Idol, but with the conclusion of FOX’s reality singing competition, Grace was forced to take her dreams elsewhere. In a recent interview with Teen Vogue, Vanderwaal shared that her mom was the one that encouraged her to audition for America’s Got Talent.
“It’s always been a dream to audition for American Idol,” Grace admitted. “But you have to be 15 or older. And as you may know, this [was] the last season. And so we always said that when I was 15, I was going to audition for American Idol. And then one day my mom just called me downstairs and she had her laptop out and was like, ‘I signed you up for America’s Got Talent.’ Just like that. And then the next weekend I auditioned.”
In the two months since her infamous audition aired, Vanderwaal has gained a massive social media following resulting in her AGT audition video being viewed more than 31 million times on YouTube. She gained so many adoring fans that she had to get her own post office box to receive all of the gifts and the mail coming her way.
All of the attention Grace Vanderwaal is receiving is well deserved, as she reminded us during Tuesday night’s live show. Once again, Vanderwaal wowed the America’s Got Talent audience as she accompanied herself on the ukulele and sang the original song, “Beautiful Thing,” a tune she wrote for her older sister. As the song concluded, Grace couldn’t contain her smile as the crowd rose to its feet.
Vanderwaal will take the stage again Wednesday night for the results show where only seven of the twelve remaining acts will move on to the semifinals.
Watch Grace Vanderwaal perform “Beautiful Thing” below and let us know if you think she should win Season 11 of America’s Got Talent.