Taking to the “America’s Got Talent” stage, 12-year-old singer Ansley Burns started off by chatting with judge Simon Cowell, who complemented her Southern accent and asked what song she was going to sing for her audition.
“‘Think’ by Aretha Franklin,” she told Cowell, who was somewhat incredulous.
“You’re going to do Aretha?” he asked. “At 12? Okay, you sure?”
She was, and launched into the classic track. Something however, seemed a bit off with the backing track she was singing with.
“Where’d they get the track from?” Cowell asked fellow judge Julianne Hough before holding up his hand to halt the performance.
“Ansley, Ansley, sorry babe,” Cowell told her. “I don’t think this backing track was working for you. I think it was a horrible, horrible backing track, so I don’t think we can judge you properly on this, I really don’t. We really like you, but that was terrible.”
As the aspiring singer’s eyes widened in panic, Cowell continued. “If you’re gonna sing Aretha, you gotta have a great track,” he added, suggesting she sing a chorus and a verse a cappella.
Sensing her nerves, Cowell walked up to the edge of the stage and handed her his cup, insisting he hadn’t taken a drink from it. “This will help,” he explained. “It’s like magic water, it’s yours.”
After taking a sip and bringing the cup to the wings, she walked back to centre stage and quipped, “Well, that just happened,” pulling herself together while Cowell offered encouragement.
Finally ready, Burns launched into the song without accompaniment and totally nailed it, wowing the judges and the audience.
Watch the amazing audition in the video above.