'Curly Sue' 's Alisan Porter Opens Up About Joining 'The Voice' After Battling Alcoholism: Singing Has 'Fueled the Fire Again Within Me'

The former child star wowed judges and audiences alike on the Season 10 premiere

Photo: NBC

Curly Sue actress Alisan Porter has overcome addiction and is poised to once again pour her heart out in front of America – this time, on The Voice.

“It’s amazing and every day I work hard to not go backwards and keep moving forwards, and I just feel very blessed to be here and be doing what I love,” the singer-actress tells PEOPLE about landing a spot on coach Christina Aguilera‘s team.

It’s a long time coming for Porter, who in 2014 revealed on her blog that she once struggled with alcoholism and had been sober for seven years. Now, after starting a family with husband Brian Autenrieth – the couple have two children, Mason and Aria – the 34-year-old mom is conditioning herself for the spotlight.

“The past 24 hours have been crazy-amazing,” she shares of her whirlwind experience since winning over judges and the audience on Monday’s Season 10 premiere. “I’ve had such an amazing outpouring of support. It’s been really incredible.”

Nearly a year and a half after releasing her latest solo album, Who We Are, the former child star says auditioning for the NBC’s hit singing competition led to a revelation about her enduring love for music: “I really still want to do this,” she says.

Still, doubts lingered. “I was nervous about putting myself back into something so public and going back into a career, especially since I have kids now and I’ve been a stay-at-home mom for three and a half years,” Porter shares.

All the questions have been left in the past, though. “I’ve just really enjoyed the process and it’s fueled the fire again within me,” she says.

She confidently adds: “Any reservations I had got squashed the second I stepped on stage to do my blind audition, and I just feel super comfortable and excited about going forward.”

And everyone is excited for her. On Monday, Porter’s epic rendition of Linda Ronstadt’s “Blue Bayou” (you can download it here) had all four coaches – Aguilera, Adam Levine, Blake Shelton and Pharrell – turning their red swivel chairs.

“I really wanted to sing a classic,” says Porter of her song choice. “I love songs from that era, I love kind of blending folk and rock and country, so I felt like I wanted to sing a classic with all those elements and that was really something I thought would work and I love that song.”

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