Blind, autistic singer delivers ‘America’s Got Talent’ performance that Simon Cowell will ‘never forget’

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A musical performance on Tuesday’s America’s Got Talent earned one contestant high praise from judge Simon Cowell, not to mention a fast track to the show’s next round.

Lavender Darcangelo is a 27-year-old singer who took the stage with her dad. She said she’s been singing since she was three years old even though she didn’t talk until she was four-and-a-half, before adding, “I’m also autistic, as well as blind.”

Darcangelo went on to say that she’s on the show because she has “a lot of dreams,” one of which being that she wants to start a school with classes based on what students are naturally curious about.

“So, a school I would have thrived in,” she said.

Darcangelo also talked about how she was adopted later in life after meeting her dad, Will, at an after-school music program he started. She was later adopted by Will, who was on stage, and his husband Jamie, who was watching from the audience.

The singer then performed her version of a song made famous by Irene Cara in the movie Fame, “Out Here On My Own,” which was powerful and impressive and ultimately earned a standing ovation from everyone in the audience, along with all four judges.

After Darcangelo’s performance ended, Cowell was the first judge to give his reaction.

“That was sensational. Honestly, sensational,” he said. “Everything about that was just magical, magical. You have such a talent. You have such an amazing personality. And you know what? We make the show because we get to meet people like you occasionally. And I am so happy that you’ve come on our show to share your talent with us, because this is an audition I’ll never forget. It was amazing, amazing.”

Judge Sofia Vergara called the song “spectacular” and “beautiful,” and said at one point she forgot she was judging and was just enjoying Darcangelo’s voice, while Howie Mandel called her “a dream come true.”

Then it was time for Heidi Klum’s assessment.

“I feel like I just fell in love,” she said. “This AGT journey is an amazing journey, and I would love to be your cheerleader and hold your hand all the way till the finish line.”

And at that point Klum put her “buzzer” where her mouth is by hitting a Golden Buzzer, which automatically sends Darcangelo straight through to the show’s next round, known as the start of the “live shows.”

She becomes the fifth performer of this season to earn a Golden Buzzer and joins other musical acts like the Mzansi Youth Choir, 8-year-old drummer Chioma, and 17-year-old singer Putri Ariani — who also happens to be blind. The only Golden Buzzer left belongs to Vergara.

While gold confetti fell from the rafters, tears fell for Darcangelo and her dads. Klum rushed on stage to celebrate, and host Terry Crews made his way out to finally ask Darcangelo how she was feeling.

“I don’t know,” she said. “I don’t know if this is a dream or if I’m really awake.”

America’s Got Talent airs Tuesdays at 8 p.m. on NBC.

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