An “America’s Got Talent” contestant blew away judges and viewers after her beautifully heart-wrenching performance of an original song.
30-year-old Jane Marczewski, who goes by “Nightbirde” when she performs, earned the coveted golden buzzer from judge Simon Cowell after singing “It’s OK,” which details the story of the last year of her life.
Getting the second golden buzzer of the season advances the Ohio native to the next round.
Aside from her magical performance, Jane touched the judges with her story. While onstage, judge Howie Mandell asked what she does for a living.
Nightbirde then told the panel that she has not been working for quite a few years because she has been dealing with cancer.
“Last time I checked, I had some cancer in my lungs, my spine and my liver,” she said. “It’s important that everyone knows I’m so much more than the bad things that happened to me.”
Nightbirde then sang her original tune, “It’s OK,” and once her performance was over, the audience and the entire panel of judges gave her a much-deserved standing ovation.
Judge Heidi Klum shared her thoughts on the beautiful number.
“You gave me chills,” she gushed. “Your voice is so beautiful to listen to, it was beautiful all the way around.”
Judge Sofia Vergara, who teared up during the performance, said that it was “powerful” and “heartfelt.”
Mandell commended Nightbirde for her authenticity.
“When singers come on, I think about authenticity. When you feel it, it moves you. That felt like the most authentic thing I have heard this season,” he said.
Cowell agreed, adding that her performance had been a “casual” way of letting audiences know about what she is going through.
“You can’t wait until life isn’t hard anymore before you decide to be happy,” Nightbirde replied.
Emotional, Cowell paused to sip his drink, seemingly pondering. He then said that there have been some great singers this year and that he’s not going to give her a yes—something that drew protest from the auditorium.
“I’m going to give you something else,” he continued before slamming the golden buzzer. Gold confetti rained down on the stage, and Nightbirde fell to the floor, overwhelmed by what just happened.
Cowell then joined her on stage to give her a hug.
“I have a two percent chance of survival but two percent is not zero percent. Two percent is something and I wish people knew how amazing it is,” she said.
Host Terry Crews also spoke to Nightbirde backstage.
“You blew us all away,” he told her. “You are the voice we all need to hear this year.”
After Tuesday’s episode, Cowell took to social media to introduce his followers to his golden buzzer act. So far, the video of her performance has garnered 37 million views on Facebook.
Jane maintains a blog where she shares her journey, including her terminal cancer diagnosis and the breakdown of her marriage.
“After the doctor told me I was dying, and after the man I married said he didn’t love me anymore, I chased a miracle in California and sixteen weeks later, I got it,” she wrote.
“I have had cancer three times now, and I have barely passed thirty. There are times when I wonder what I must have done to deserve such a story.”
You can read more of Jane’s posts here.
Singers, dancers, comics, musicians, magicians, ventriloquists, and more have graced the “America’s Got Talent” stage since it first aired in June 2006. Each week, participants appear before celebrity judges who decide which contestants move on in the competition.
With the help of the show’s host, the audience learns the backstories of these talented people as they strive to make it to the finals. The winner gets a life-changing $1 million prize.
Watch Nightbirde’s stunning golden buzzer performance in the video below.
You can catch “America’s Got Talent” every Tuesday at 8 p.m. ET/PT on NBC.