News, Commentary on Classical Music, Jazz, Theater, Dance & More
Dec 28, 2013 09:42 PM EST | Classicalite Newsdesk
Nine-year-old singer Amira Willighagen won Holland's Got Talent on Saturday evening with a moving performance of Puccini's "Nessun Dorma."
Amira sang the emotional aria from Puccini's opera Turandot with a choir backing her up, while her many supporters in the audience cheered and waved signs.
Amira was the favorite going in to the finals of the televised talent show. Last week, she sang "Ave Maria" on the semi-finals, and the video of her performance has since gone viral.
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At the finals, Amira received more than 50% of the television viewers' votes to win first place over seven other contestants.
Amira Willighagen was awarded a trophy and the grand prize...which is a performance in Las Vegas. Dance troupe Reality won second place, while third place went to 80-year-old Grandpa Piet.
The jury was unanimous in their praise for Amira. "Tonight, the Netherlands has become one world star richer," Juror Gordon Heuckeroth said.
Juror Dan Karaty told her, "It's a gift you have, and I think we all are looking forward to watching you grow with that gift and see how far it can go, because you're just positively spectacular up there. That's all I can say."
He later tweeted: "What a finish! Reality created such a moment, then Amira brought the house down."
It's likely that the world has not heard the last of this extremely talented young singer.
Many observers have compared Amira with Jackie Evancho, 13, who became a celebrity after her appearances on America's Got Talent.
Miss Evancho, herself, is well known for her performance of the aria "Nessun Dorma."
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