Sixteen-year-old Christian Guardino has been in the media spotlight before: four years ago, the formerly blind young singer was profiled in National Geographic after a medical treatment gave him back his eyesight. But now he’s surprising audiences in a whole new way, thanks to an uplifting vocal performance on Tuesday night’s America’s Got Talent that left judge Simon Cowell speechless.
The Patchogue, N.Y.-based teen started off onstage admitting right off the bat that he was nervous. But Cowell helped calm him down, suggesting he had a “good feeling” about Guardino’s potential. And true to Cowell’s instinct, Guardino quickly dispensed with his anxieties when he launched into a rousing rendition of the Jackson 5’s “Who’s Lovin’ You.” As he belted out the soulful tune, judge Howie Mandel rose to his feet almost immediately. The audience (and the rest of the judges) soon followed suit.
“I mean, what just happened?” shouted excited fellow judge Mel B. after he had finished the song.
Guardino got the Golden Buzzer from Mandel thanks to his impressive voice, which catapults him into the live round of the show. In the meantime, he’s been receiving messages of support from both Mandel and fellow Golden Buzzer recipient and Talent contestant Mandy Harvey, who wowed crowds last week.