Ventriloquy—the art of throwing one’s voice, or making it appear as though it’s coming from somewhere else (usually from a puppet)—is kind of a lost art. Do you know any tweens that are into it?
Well Darci Lynne Farmer, a 12-year-old from Oklahoma who appeared on America’s Got Talent the other night, is super passionate about it. “I would really like to keep ventriloquism alive, because it’s not common, you know?” Darci Lynne told Simon Cowell after he asked dryly why she was auditioning for the show.
Cue the music. Darci Lynne’s puppet, a bunny named Petunia, bursts into song and the judges are astounded. Simon, no doubt jaded from years of doing this kind of work, looks genuinely taken aback. Darci Lynne’s mom stands nervously in the wings, and Tyra Banks, who’s clutching her shoulders, is shocked.
Petunia’s voice is incredibly powerful, yet Darci Lynne stands calmly by, a serene smile on her face. But the voice—the voice is coming from the girl! The girl whose lips are not moving, whose body betrays no sign of movement while she’s actually belting out the words to Summertime!
As Petunia goes for her big finish, the crowd rises, Simon and the judges stand too, Darci Lynne cries and laughs, her mom cries too. And then Mel B—formerly known as Scary Spice—says the softest thing of all: “You know what’s really sweet,” she begins. “Your puppet, I’m guessing, is exactly like you: Very charming and adorable. You make my heart melt. You were brilliant! I’m trying to describe how amazing it was…” And then Mel B slams down on the golden buzzer—which, for those who aren’t AGT fans (like me), is the sign that you’ve made made it past the auditions and gone straight to the live show.
It’s a storm of gold confetti, Darci Lynne bursts into tears, her mom rushes the stage, Tyra freaks out and Mel B gets up there to hug her. I don’t think I’ve ever watched AGT, but this gets me as emotional as Tyra!
You have to watch this!