One of the front-runners to win “America’s Got Talent” Season 16, a singer named Nightbirde, has just made the difficult decision to withdraw from the show due to her battle with cancer. “Since my audition, my health has taken a turn for the worse and the fight with cancer is demanding all of my energy and attention,” she wrote on Instagram. “I am so sad to announce that I won’t be able to continue forward on this season of ‘AGT.’ Life doesn’t always give breaks to those that deserve it — but we knew that already.” Read her full statement:
Real name Jane Marczewski, Nightbirde wowed the judges during her June 8 audition with her performance of “It’s Okay,” an original song she wrote about her health struggles (watch above). She mentioned at the time how she’d only been given a 2% chance of survival by the doctors, but that she wished “people knew how amazing it is” that the 2% was at least something.
“AGT” judge Simon Cowell was so moved by her performance and her story that he pressed the Golden Buzzer, showering her in golden confetti and sending her straight through to the live shows. Nightbirde will now likely have to be replaced in the lives, which begin Tuesday, August 10 on NBC after the Olympics have wrapped up. The Top 36 acts are set to be divided into three groups of 12, with each group performing live for America’s votes from the Dolby Theatre. As of press time, Cowell still had not commented on Nightbirde withdrawing.
“Sharing my heart with the world on ‘AGT’ has been an honor and a dream come true,” Nightbirde posted to her fans. “My point of view this summer has been astounding. What a miracle that the pain I’ve walked through can be reworked into beauty that makes people all over the world open their eyes wider … Thank you for all your support, it means the world to me. Stay with me, I’ll be better soon. I’m planning my future, not my legacy. Pretty beat up, but I’ve still got dreams.”
Other than Nightbirde, the following acts also received Golden Buzzers during this 16th season of “America’s Got Talent”: chorale group Northwell Nurse Choir (by Howie Mandel), martial arts group World Taekwondo Demonstration Team (by Terry Crews), singer Jimmie Herrod (by Sofia Vergara), quick-change artist Lea Kyle (by Heidi Klum) and singer Victory Brinker (by the entire panel).