By Brian Ives
Earlier this week, 16 year old singer Calysta Bevier wowed audiences on America’s Got Talent with both her singing ability and her story. Before she sang, Howie Mandel complimented her short hair, at which point she mentioned that her short hair wasn’t necessarily her choice, since she is a stage 3 ovarian cancer survivor and had gone through chemotherapy.
That story, coming from a teenager, was enough to stun the panel of judges, but it was her performance of Rachel Platten’s “Fight Song” that floored them. In fact, Simon Cowell hit the shows’ “Golden Buzzer,” which automatically sent Bevier to the next round.
Bevier tells Radio.com that she hadn’t planned on sharing too much of her story with the judges, until Mandell mentioned her hairstyle.
“I probably wouldn’t have gotten a chance to say anything,” she says. “So I’m really glad he mentioned my hair!”
While many hopefuls trying out for TV competitions understandably get nervous, Bevier says that she felt pretty calm. “For me, the smaller the crowd, the more nervous I get. I think I kind of belong 0n big stages. So it was amazing and super awesome to be up there and be able to tell everyone my story and share my voice.”
She was blown away by the support from Cowell, who can be intimidating to amateur singers. “Getting the ‘Golden Buzzer’ from the other judges would have been great, but he’s a producer, he has worked with so many artists. So for me, it was amazing. I never expected that.”
This wasn’t her first time on national television; a few months back, she was invited on The Ellen Show; the show’s producer was familiar with Bevier because of her YouTube videos.
“That was absolutely amazing. I was in contact with her producer for months before I was actually invited onto the show. I didn’t even know that I was going to be performing on the show until a day before.”
And DeGeneres had another surprise for young Miss Bevier as well. “She said that she was going to have me perform the song with ‘someone,’ and I knew exactly who she was talking about.” In a perfect, and moving, TV moment Rachel Platten walked onto the stage and proceeded to perform “Fight Song” with Bevier.
“And after the America’s Got Talent video went viral, she [Platen] tweeted it and put it on her Facebook page.”
Rachel Platten (@RachelPlatten) June 22, 2016
“It was so cool that she called me ‘my girl.'”
And as for her health: “I’ve been feeling awesome, everything is back to normal, my bloodwork’s good, I definitely have made a comeback.”
Bevier says that she’ll next appear on America’s Got Talent after the the tryout rounds are over, so we probably won’t see her on screen until late July. Is she going to try and grow her hair out between now and then?
“No: I love my hair short, so I’m probably going to keep it short. Plus, dealing with it takes too long and I’m too impatient.”