Darci Lynne Farmer is the winner of America’s Got Talent!
After 52 million votes were cast, host Tyra Banks announced the 12-year-old singing ventriloquist as the champion of season 12. Farmer, who becomes the second ventriloquist to win the NBC reality competition show, edged out 9-year-old singer Angelica Hale for the top honor. When her name was announced, Farmer burst into tears, hugging her rabbit puppet Petunia as her two brothers rushed the stage to congratulate her.
Farmer became the third female act to win America’s Got Talent in 12 seasons.
A big highlight from night two of the live finals was when the Oklahoma native performed with her “idol” Terry Fator, who won season 2 of AGT with his puppet, Winston the Impersonating Turtle, and signed a $100 million five-year contract with The Mirage hotel in Las Vegas.
The pair performed “Anything You Can Do” from Annie Get Your Gun.
During the first night of the live finals on Tuesday, judge Simon Cowell was so blown away by her performance of The Beatles’ “With a Little Help from My Friends” with Petunia and shy mouse Oscar that he predicted her as the all-around winner.
“I think you’re gonna win,” he said.
Weeks ago, during the audition process, Farmer impressed judge Mel B so much that the Spice Girl member chose her as the recipient of the coveted Golden Buzzer, sending Farmer straight to the live shows.
“I was very, very shy but America’s Got Talent has given me a voice and more confidence than I could ever have,” Farmer said in her video package before she made the top five on Wednesday.
Farmer beat out nine other finalists including singers Kechi Okwuchi, Evie Clair, Angelica Hale, Chase Goehring, and Mandy Harvey in addition to comedian Preacher Lawson, dog trainer Sara & Hero, and dance troupes Light Balance and Diavolo.
In addition to the title of season 12 champion, Farmer also wins $1 million and a headlining gig at Planet Hollywood in Las Vegas from Sept. 3-4.
America’s Got Talent airs Wednesdays (8 p.m. ET) on NBC.