'America's Got Talent' season finale recap: Kelly Clarkson and James Arthur perform and a new winner is crowned
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“America’s Got Talent” aired the season 12 finale last night (Sept. 20) on NBC. Pop superstars Kelly Clarkson and James Arthur as well as the Queen of Country Pop Shania Twain delivered dazzling performances with the contenders and a brand new AGT champ was crowned in a spectacular night of entertainment.

Kelly Clarkson Pays It Forward

It was so fun to see Kelly Clarkson perform “Stronger” with Angelica Hale and Kechi. If any of the contenders can claim the message in this song for themselves, it’s these two talented ladies. Both fought unimaginable medical circumstances and survived to tell their stories. Plus, they are living their lives to inspire others to believe in themselves and fight to overcome any seemingly impossible situation.

In an AXS interview, Kechi cited Kelly Clarkson’s album Breakaway as something that helped her through an excruciating, physically-confining experience as a burn survivor. Angelica Hale told AXS, “I want to make an impact on people and I want to inspire them.”

Angelica and Kechi have amazing vocal gifts and the hard battles they each fought have undoubtedly left an indelible impression on all four AGT judges, the live audience and viewers across America. It was great watching them sing with the first “American Idol” winner, whose own rise to fame is a fairy tale, dream-come true-story.  They were visibly ecstatic to perform with her and impressively matched Clarkson's vocal prowess. It was rather ironic Clarkson won her “Idol” title on the very same stage, standing in front of Simon Cowell, and now she’s one of the biggest music stars on the planet. Performing with these hopefuls was a great way for her to pay her success forward.

When Tyra Banks asked Clarkson what advice she would give her performance partners, she stressed the importance of the exposure AGT has given them, win or lose. She said, “It’s all about getting on television, having people see you, having managers see you, having agents see you. So, you made it the entire time, even if you don’t win, you’re still on the show the same amount of time as all of the other 10.”

Angelica and Kechi are arguably two of the most unforgettable contenders AGT has seen on the show. They both deserve bright futures, despite not winning the title. Hopefully, they will get snapped up by the right label, network, or manager and be able to fulfill their music dreams.

Evie Clair and Chase Goehring Perform with James Arthur

“The X Factor UK” season nine winner James Arthur has enjoyed massive success recently with his beautiful chart-busting ballad, “Say You Won’t Let Go.” He joined contenders Evie Clair and Chase Goehring on the AGT stage to first perform a duet of Clair’s bright original song “Okay Day” and then to perform “Say You Won’t Let Go” with Goehring. Everyone did a spectacular job, especially Evie, who unveiled an original song for the first time, and was so brave, considering her father’s passing a week prior.

Both artists have developed fan followings during their AGT journey. Like Angelica and Kechi, their talent speaks for itself and either one of them would make a great recording artist.

Shania Twain Performs with Mandy Harvey

First, it was so amazing to see Oscar-winning actress Marlee Matlin use ASL to convey how inspirational Mandy Harvey’s AGT journey has been to the deaf community. Harvey was the first AGT contender to ever use sign language on the show and she signed again when joining country superstar Shania Twain for a duet of “You’re Still the One.” Their voices blended beautifully. Mandy Harvey touched so many hearts with her incredible vocal gifts and her original songs carried such great messages. She came in fourth place, overall, and we would love to see her land a record deal as well.

Darci Lynne Takes the Title

At 12, singing ventriloquist Darci Lynne Farmer follows suit with last year’s winner, Grace VanderWaal, who was the same age when she won. There were so many fantastic young performers this season! Darci Lynne set herself apart at her very first audition as she stunned us all with her incredible singing voice, humor, and amazing creativity she employed in bringing her puppet Petunia to such vivid, colorful life. She’s cute, charismatic and incredibly entertaining. Heidi Klum summed it up best when she told E News, “she has the total package.”

It was arguably heart wrenching to see Darci Lynne and Angelica Hale, who is 10, standing next to each other to await their fate. Many people probably echoed our wish that both could win! Angelica was easily the best singer this season and what Darci Lynne does is so unique. Darci Lynne cried when her win was announced, as did Angelica who is officially the season 12 AGT runner up. Light Balance followed in third place, with Mandy Harvey in fourth and Sara and Hero in fifth.

We can’t wait to see what Darci Lynne and her puppets have cooked up for her Vegas show. A big congrats goes out to her and all of this year’s amazing AGT contenders, who helped us all remember dreams are worth fighting for and dreams do come true.

“America’s Got Talent” will return on NBC.