'Angel' voice Jackie Evancho advances as 11 million watch
Jackie Evancho not only hit the prime time, she is prime time.
Fueled by the 10-year-old Richland singing phenom, "America's Got Talent" became the most-watched television show in America on Tuesday night, drawing about 11 million viewers, according to Nielsen.
A similar number of viewers were expected to watch Wednesday night, when Jackie advanced to the top 10 acts vying for an ultimate prize of $1 million and a headlining show in Las Vegas. She hid her face in her hands when her name was announced.
"I just want to say thank you to America for voting for me, and I also want to thank you, Pittsburgh, because that's my hometown, and I really, really love Pittsburgh," Jackie said.
Piers Morgan, one of the show's three judges, asked Jackie what she would do with the money if she wins the $1 million prize.
"I don't know. I'm hoping that I can spend it on something for animals," Jackie replied.
Locally, about 375,000 Pittsburgh homes tuned in to the talent show Tuesday to watch Jackie's rendition of Andrea Bocelli's classical crossover piece "Time to Say Goodbye." That was the most of any prime-time TV show in Pittsburgh, said Ray Carter, vice president and general manager of WPXI-TV.
"That's a monster number for that kind of show," Carter said. "The little Pine-Richland girl did quite well for us."
Locally, 18 percent of 25- to 54-year-olds watched the show, as did 21 percent of women.
"In a world with 300 channels to choose from, those are big numbers," Carter said.
The live Hollywood audience gave standing ovations to four semifinal performers before Jackie took the stage Tuesday. Hers, though, appeared to be longest -- and loudest.
"This is the best semifinal in five years," Morgan said.
"You're like an angel from another planet," said fellow judge Howie Mandel.
Jackie became America's sweetheart three weeks ago after her initial performance.
Her popularity has soared.
More than 9,500 people indicated they "like" Jackie on her Facebook fan page as of Thursday afternoon, up from about 2,000 three weeks ago. Her 2009 album "Prelude to a Dream," which features mainly cover songs such as "Amazing Grace" and Martina McBride's "Concrete Angel," sold out on Amazon.com. The website did not indicate when more might become available.
Clips of Jackie's performance three weeks ago drew more than 10 million views on YouTube.
At least one record company approached her, according to her family.
None of this surprises Tom Madden, the artistic director for the Kean Theatre in Richland.
Madden, who was a manager and creative director at theaters in Los Angeles, watched in awe when Jackie performed "Time to Say Goodbye" at the Kean Idol singing competition in 2009. She finished second.
"I have a couple judges right now going, 'Whoops,' " Madden said. "I supply top-shelf judges, but I think that one got by them."
Regardless of the show's outcome, the sky is the limit for Jackie, said local entertainment icon Johnny Angel.
"There's such a void for what she's doing," he said. "Maybe our culture will allow (for) a little more classical.
"I'd love to see her at Lincoln Center or at a presidential inauguration."
What's next?The top 10 acts perform Tuesday, with a results show Wednesday. The final four compete Sept. 14 for $1 million and a headlining Las Vegas show.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Pitt professor’s UV technology destined for Mars in 2020
- Offense awakens to lead Steelers past Panthers
- Corbett to speak about hunt for suspect in state trooper ambush
- Game changers: Turnover leads to elusive TD for Steelers
- Pirates, Worley edge Brewers, 1-0, move to cusp of playoffs
- Pirates notebook: Bucs set single-season attendance record
- Brookline schools on lockdown again after new phone threat
- State Dems take back seat to political committee in gubernatorial election
- Rossi: State of NFL gives Steelers a chance
- Connellsville Legion needs young veterans
- Pirates find a bridge at end of baseball world in Holdzkom