Andrea Valles is ready to show America she’s got what it takes to be the next American Idol.
Valles, who started her singing career at nine-years-old, is now 23. She tells ABC 13 that she grew up in America but her mother spoke Spanish in the house and “stayed close to that heritage.”
“It’s more comfortable to sing in English because that’s my first language, but when I sing in Spanish, there’s something about it too. It comes from deep in my soul where I’m from so it feels more at home when I sing in Spanish too,” she said.
Valles added, “I drew a picture of myself on an ‘American Idol’ stage when I was 9 years old and that’s when I told my mom that I wanted to be a singer. So the fact that it’s happening now is super huge, especially for my family,” Valles said. “They know that it’s my dream.”
Here’s what you need to know:
Valles Performs for the Judges
When Valles performed for the judges, Perry said, “I kind of got lost in a daydream listening to your voice.” When Valles got excited, Perry said it wasn’t necessarily a good thing.
She said, “You just hypnotized me a little bit.” At first, Perry seemed hesitant to let Valles through, stating that the performance felt a bit “linear.”
Luke Bryan, however, thought that Valles had what it takes, and said, “She’s a star… she’s a diamond.”
That’s when Valles started singing for the second time in a fight for the golden ticket.
And it worked– Valles made it through to the finals, but the judges explained that she’s going to need to bring the “magic.”
It Was ‘the Most Amazing Feeling’
While the judges weren’t necessarily easy on her, Valles was inspired by them and found herself even more determined to prove herself.
Speaking to ABC 13, she said, “Seeing these artists who have been doing this their whole lives is super admirable, and being able to perform in front of them is a dream come true,” Valles said.
She added, “Lionel (Richie) is just so beautiful. He has the most beautiful smile. Katy (Perry) is just funny, so herself, and Luke (Bryan) is silly…. their combination together makes it so nice to be a part of it,” Valles described.
Today, the singer is a full-time performer– she explains, “My mom was a single mom for the majority of my upbringing. I have so much respect for my mom. She’s always supported me… I remember telling her I wanted to be a famous singer since I was 9 years old, and ever since then, everything she’s done to help me has been toward that so I owe it all to her and my family.”
There’s no doubt that this year will bring with it some fierce competition– a number of talented singers have already advanced to Hollywood. American Idol airs Sundays on ABC at 8 pm ET/PT.