Darci Lynne Farmer, a 12-year-old ventriloquist, wowed all four judges on the season premiere of “America’s Got Talent” on May 30. Before performing, she readily admitted to the fearsome foursome — Simon Cowell, Heidi Klum, Howie Mandel and Mel B. — that she began working with her puppet Petunia, a rascally rabbit, just two years to overcome her shyness.
There was certainly no trace of nerves when she started to perform “Summertime,” the ballad from the George Gershwin opera “Porgy & Bess,” that became a signature song for Ella Fitgerald. Her sweet little voice was soon overpowered by that of Petunia and the two soon got into a battle for supremacy in their duet. Mel B. was so impressed by Farmer that she pressed the Golden Buzzer, sending her straight to the semi-finals that will air live on NBC, beginning on August 15.
Her decision looks to be the right one based on viewing figures. Farmer’s audition has been watched by more than 200 million people on YouTube and Facebook. She could well become the third ventriloquist to win “America’s Got Talent” following Terry Fator and Paul Zerdin who prevailed in seasons two and 10 respectively. And last year’s winner, Grace VanderWaal, was another 12-year-old who sang.
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