A BRITISH schoolgirl, 13, who wowed the America’s Got Talent judges has been busking to fund her dream, it’s been revealed.
Courtney Hadwin, from Peterlee in County Durham, performs on streets up and down the UK to pay for her singing lessons.
refer to caption. Courtney Hadwin, 13, who wowed the judges on America’s Got Talent, has been busking on the streets of the UK to fund her dream
She gives some of the cash to her dad Paul for petrol money as he drives her to some of her favourite spots around the North East and even down to the capital.
The teenager received a standing ovation after she performed a storming rendition of an Otis Redding classic during her audition on Tuesday night.
Her proud grandfather, Tom Storey, told MailOnline: “The busking has been paying for her music lessons and for petrol money.”
The security guard, from Inverness, admitted that while the punters love her singing, Courtney wasn’t a huge hit with the other buskers.
refer to caption. The America’s Got Talent judges were blown away by 13-year-old Courtney Hadwin’s performance
refer to caption. The teenager was in tears after being chosen for the Golden Buzzer
He added: “They keep asking her to move away because she is always the big attraction and attracts the crowd. It doesn’t go down well with them.”
The 60-year-old revealed Courtney had chosen to enter the American version of the talent show because “the UK doesn’t get her” after she lost out in the UK’s The Voice Kids.
He said the youngster received online abuse after her appearance on the show, with some calling her a “shouter” not a singer, which left the family upset.
But Mr Storey firmly believes his granddaughter, whose moves are all self-taught, is going to “go down a storm” in the States as he expressed his pride.
refer to caption. The British school girl was given given a standing ovation and ‘golden buzzer’ for her Otis Redding song
refer to caption. Her father looked on proudly as she sung
Mr Storey added: “If she wins the million pounds it will be some transformation of the family’s finances.”
On Tuesday night’s show, Courtney was seen nervously walking on stage and telling the judges that her favourite subject at school was music.
After the schoolgirl, who attends The Academy at Shotton Hall, was asked to start her performance, she theatrically started to nod her head to the beat.
Within just a few bars of the 1968 hit Hard To Handle, her unexpectedly powerful voice had the judges all smiling, and Mel B shouted: “Oh my God!”
Very soon they were all on their feet along with the cheering crowd behind them to give Courtney, who’s previously appeared on The Voice Kids in the UK, a standing ovation.
Once she had finished, Simon said: “You were this shy little thing when you came out and then you sing and you’re like a lion.
“I mean genuinely incredible.”