President-elect Donald Trump has chosen a 16-year-old classical singer to perform the National Anthem at his upcoming inauguration and she made the announcement on the Today show this morning. Jackie Evancho, who is best-known for coming in second on America's Got Talent at the ripe old age of 10, revealed the exciting news earlier today, telling Matt Lauer, Hoda Kotb, Tamron Hall, and Al Roker that she is "so excited. It's going to be awesome" to perform at the ceremony on January 20. Evancho is in good company, following in the footsteps of Beyoncé and Aretha Franklin, respectively, at President Obama's inauguration ceremonies in 2013 and 2009. She told the co-hosts she "felt really honored to be able to sing for the office," adding that "it's a great honor."
It won't be her first time performing for the president. In 2010, she performed for President Obama and the first family at the National Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony. She performed for Obama again in 2012 at the National Prayer Breakfast. It won't be her first time meeting President-elect Trump: the two met at his Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida shortly after Evancho's appearance on AGT.
A Pittsburgh native, Evancho competed on season 5 of the NBC reality series in 2010 and her career has skyrocketed in the years since. She has released six studio albums (including, most recently, her third Christmas album) and has been praised for bringing classical music into mainstream consciousness. She has performed at numerous charity benefits and has traveled the world on tour. She has also modeled for Guess Kids in 2012 and appeared alongside Robert Redford, Anna Kendrick, and Shia LaBeouf in the 2012 feature film The Company You Keep. Check out Evancho's first performance on America's Got Talent, singing "O Mio Babbino Caro," below.
And check out the music video for her latest single, "Apocalypse," below.