Her large, joyful family smiled backstage as the “shy” Alondra Santos magically transformed from an adorable 13-year-old girl into a commanding arena-style performer. Alondra says she only sings at home, so the America’s Got Talent audition — at the Orpheum Theatre no less– is essentially her public debut.* Boom! Young Alondra not only nailed it with a voice well beyond her years, she seemed to perform with a voice that held an additional century’s worth of passion. The AGT judges all immediately crushed on this young Californian who had just crushed her debut. Even Howard Stern, who admitted he doesn’t really like mariachi, gave the kid a yes. You gotta have what it takes to make a believer out of Howard Stern. He’s seen it all.
Alondra is probably just too young to get nervous about performing to a packed house at the Orpheum. Or maybe it’s just when you feel the music like Alondra does, it takes you away to a sacred place and it doesn’t matter where you’re physically standing. The America’s Got Talent audience also fell hard for the little Latina with the booming voice. She’ll need to show some versatility to move forward in the competition, but she won’t ever have to prove to anyone that she can sing. Done that.
*That’s how it seems from her AGT interview, but Alondra has appeared on La Voz Kids. She may have meant her English language show debut.