UNITY, Pa. — Before she’s on “America’s Got Talent” next week, 9-year-old opera singer Victory Brinker of Unity used to play “AGT” with her 10 siblings as parents Christine and Eric took on the roles of the show’s judges.
“All of my brothers and sisters would do acts and sometimes I would pretend to be a bad act and get the buzzer,” Victory said with excitement. “And then I’d pretend to be a good act.”
Mom Christine said they hadn’t played “AGT” at home in several years.
“She was probably 6 and she’d get us all together and she’d give us all drink coasters to pretend were buzzers,” Christine said, adding that she and Victory only remembered her “AGT”-at-home game after traveling to tape the audition round episode at the Pasadena, Calif., Civic Auditorium in April. The episode airs at 8 p.m. Tuesday on Pittsburgh’s WPXI-TV.
“AGT” isn’t Victory’s first primetime performance. Last year she sang “Queen of the Night” from “The Magic Flute” (in German!) on the Melissa McCarthy-hosted “Little Big Shots.”
“She was so fun and funny and nice,” Victory said of the comedic actress-turned-host.
Christine said Victory has been learning seven languages — and sings in all seven — but French is a favorite.
“It’s beautiful,” Victory said.
Christine characterized Victory as “an early talker” who started singing at age 2.
“Between 2 and 3 she was actually memorizing whole CDs by (contemporary Christian singer) Mandisa,” Christine said. “The day before she turned 6, she asked me to show her a YouTube (video) of somebody who could sing the very highest notes, higher than Mandisa. I showed her an opera singer and she said, ‘I’m gonna do that. Teach me a song.’ Within two days she had learned ‘Ave Maria.’”
Victory performed in her first talent competition three weeks later. “I just really like the high notes,” said Victory, a home-schooled rising fourth grader, according to our news partners at TribLive.
In addition to singing at Impact Life Church in Acme, where her father Eric is a pastor, Victory has performed the national anthem at a Pirates game and during the NBA playoffs. She’s also got a YouTube page full of performances.
“AGT” producers contacted Victory’s family after her “Little Big Shots” appearance but the family opted not to pursue an appearance last summer mid-pandemic.
“We just felt like this year she was ready to do this,” Christine said. “Like everybody during the pandemic, she had a year just to practice and didn’t have a lot of shows. She just put a lot of time into learning new technique and improving her skills.”