Deaf Audition on America’s Got Talent Reminds Us to Keep Holding On
Twenty-nine year old deaf singer Mandy Harvey never expected the standing ovation, deaf applause, and brimming smiles on the faces of the America’s Got Talent audience – let alone from tough critic Simon Cowell. But Simon went even further and pressed the Golden Buzzer, sending Mandy straight to the semi-final round – a bold move that each judge can only execute once per season.
Watch this heart-warming, awe-inspiring video to see just what Simon saw in this talented young lady at the bottom of the page: unparalleled resilience that triumphed over an extreme obstacle, allowing God’s light to shine through.
Like many little girls, Mandy began singing at age 4. But unlike many girls, Mandy had an unusual knack for pitch and a high-quality tone. She continued to sing throughout childhood and adolescence, believing that it would be a key part of her identity throughout her life.
But when Mandy was 18, she lost her hearing due to a connective tissue disease that damaged her nerves. Becoming deaf while entering adulthood would be hard on anyone, but what made it even more disheartening was that Mandy’s penchant for singing was sidelined – almost permanently.
According to Mandy, during her young adulthood, she wasn’t living the kind of life she had imagined. Not only did she stop singing, but she quit trying, resigning herself to a sub-optimal life due to her disease.
Trying To Move On
Imagine the relief of her concerned father when Mandy decided one day that she was ready to start trying again. She broke out her guitar and penned her own original song “Try” to put her emotions to words.
“I don’t feel the way I used to. The sky is grey much more than it is blue” is the simple but captivating first lyric. And for someone who has lost one of the most important senses, it is quite an understatement.
She continues – barefoot to feel the beat, “But I know one day I’ll get through, and I’ll take my place again – if I would try.” That day came – perhaps sooner than expected, when she sang this very song with perfect tone and pitch at America’s Got Talent as her proud father looked on.
That Golden Buzzer Moment
Mandy was overflowing with emotion as she finished her original song – and so were the audience and judges. With her interpreter standing by, Mandy looked on as an emotional Simon reached for the Golden Buzzer, saying, “I don’t think you’re going to need a translator for this.”
The crowd went wild as Simon embraced Mandy, enthusiastically remarking that he has seen many performances, but few as incredible as hers. Simon, who is known for his biting criticism and harsh judgements, had been won over by a singer who dared to keep singing – even despite an almost debilitating obstacle.
What is your biggest obstacle?
Is it preventing you from sharing your God-given talent with the world? Follow Mandy’s lead and courageously confront whatever stands in your way.