Courtney Hadwin is the clear frontrunner to win “America’s Got Talent” this year. She wowed the “AGT” judges with her scorching rendition of the Otis Redding classic “Hard to Handle” on the June 12 audition episode. That inspired Howie Mandel to press the Golden Buzzer and send her straight through to the live shows. This talented teen is now tipped to win season 13 of this American reality competition series.
That will be sweet revenge for this English rose who lost the first season of “The Voice Kids UK” in 2017. She had first won over Danny Jones with her sizzling version of Tina Turner‘s “Nutbush City Limits.” That got her into the competition and she made it all the way to the finals where she performed “And I Am Telling You I’m Not Going” from the musical “Dreamgirls.”
That scorching ballad was a show-stopper in the Broadway show and won Jennifer Holliday a Tony Award in 1981. A quarter century later Jennifer Hudson took home an Oscar for the film version of this musical inspired by the story of Diana Ross and the Supremes. However, third time did not prove to be the charm as Hadwin lost to Jess Folley who prevailed with “Love on Top” by Beyonce.
Hadwin sounds like a singer who has been performing for years. Before Mandel gave her the Golden Buzzer, he compared her to 60s singing icon Janis Joplin. And “AGT” head judge Simon Cowell was equally wowed by this talented teen, praising her tenacity and likening her to lion.
By being singled out for a Golden Buzzer, Hadwin got a free pass to the live shows, which start on August 14. There will be three weeks of these quarterfinals. Each week, 12 acts will perform on the Tuesday episode with seven finding out that they made it through to the semi-finals on the Wednesday results show.