Jackie Evancho is no stranger to the limelight. The 17-year-old has spent a large portion of her life performing in front of the entire country and sharing her skill with fans. So when people began to rally against Jackie for her decision to perform "The Star-Spangled Banner" at the Presidential Inauguration, she remained strong and followed her instincts.
After months of staying silent about her feelings since that life-changing performance, she's finally speaking out...
Jackie was born into a devout Catholic family on April 9, 2000. Her parents, Lisa and Michael Evancho, knew that she was different from moment Jackie could talk - her voice rang through the house and her passion for singing never seemed to slow down.
Her interest in opera singing began when she saw the hit musical The Phantom of the Opera in the theater. Jackie told WPXI News how that movie changed her life:
"It was 'Phantom of the Opera.' We went to go see it in the movie theater and it was very, very good. It was a very long movie, and we were mesmerized with it."
Jackie's mother realized how much she loved the movie and purchased it for her on DVD as soon as it was released. Within days, she had memorized the songs and sang them constantly. Even Mom knew something was special about her daughter's love for the opera.
"I thought she sounded good. Things just got bigger and bigger from there."
While Jackie showed interest in opera music at just 8 years old, it would be two longs years until she got her big break!
Jackie first stepped into the national spotlight when she was just 10 years old. She auditioned for NBC's America's Got Talent and quickly rose to be one of the show's top performers. Since her stint on America's Got Talent, Jackie has been hard at work.
She's toureed the nation, performed for domestic and foreign dignitaries, released one EP, seven studio albums (several of which have gone platinum and gold) and three DVD performances.
Through all of the craziness of being an "overnight" superstar, Jackie has managed to stay true to her faith, honor her moral compass and keep family a top priority.
Despite her obvious talent and desire to stay neutral, Jackie has faced mounting criticism for performing at President Trump's inauguration.
But for Jackie, it wasn't a political move, it was an honor for any budding singer! She told ABC News:
"I now get to tell myself that my name goes down on that long historical list of people who sing at the inauguration. It was a huge honor and an experience I'm never going to forget."
However, Jackie has had differing opinions with the President. Due to Jackie's sister being transgender and the controversy surrounding the President on that issue, Jackie felt compelled to disagree with him.
It's clear Jackie is a proud American with a bright future ahead of her. Hopefully people can put the politics aside and enjoy the talent that she wants to share with the world!