Singer Jackie Evancho knows people still think of her as the young child who was an “America’s Got Talent” finalist a decade ago. But now she’s all grown up, which is why Evancho wanted to try her hand at “The Masked Singer.”
Evancho was the latest star to be unmasked on the hit Fox reality competition series, having been disguised as the Kitty. (Scroll down to watch her unmasking.)
“Everybody knows me as a 10-year-old little girl who resembles an angel and sings like a 50 year old,” she told Variety. “That’s always going to be a part of me but I’m 20 years old now and I have so much else inside of me that I wanted the world to know, and this whole other range of talents and voices that I could be using. So I saw this as a great opportunity to sort of reinvent myself under this big mask of anonymity.
For her final performance, Evancho performed “Back to Black” by Amy Winehouse on Wednesday night’s episode. Her other songs in past episodes included “Dangerous Woman” and “Diamonds Are a Girl’s Best Friend.”
“I really hope to take away everything that Kitty is,” she said. “And I want to incorporate her into me as a person. Now that I don’t have that mask on anymore, I have to teach myself to not be afraid when everyone’s eyes are on me. I really just want to be, to be able to act my age, without being criticized. I want to be a serious artist and know that there are no limits to what I can do, and the show really helped me to get a grasp on that.”
Evancho said the Kitty costume was easier than others, but still presented challenges. “It was still very difficult to adjust to breathing in this heavy mask and moving around and you can barely see, so it was nerve wracking but the more episodes I did the better I got at it,” she said.
As for the panel guesses, no one got it right. Nicole Scherzinger thought it was Vanessa Hudgens, guest panelist Jeff Dye picked Mary Kate or Ashley Olsen, Robin Thicke thought it was Ashley Tisdale, Ken Jeong named Anna Kendrick and Jenny McCarthy-Wahlberg picked Lea Michele.
“I knew they were not going to be able to guess me because they know Jackie Evancho as 10 years old, not 20, and definitely not as a sexy kitty cat,” she said. “Hearing all their guesses was really cool because there were all these really strong super talented women. Especially Vanessa Hudgens was my absolute favorite because she’s so talented and full of integrity. That’s everything that I want to be as a singer and artist.”
Besides Evancho, so far this season, Lil Wayne, Drew Carey, Chaka Khan, Tony Hawk, Dionne Warwick, Tom Bergeron, Sarah Palin, Bella Thorne, JoJo Siwa, Rob Gronkowski, Jordyn Woods, Bret Michaels and Hunter Hayes have all been revealed.
As the competition continues, four celebrities are left this season: Turtle, Frog, Rhino and Night Angel.
Here’s a recap of this week’s contestants and their performances on Wednesday:
Frog’s song: “Bust A Move,” by Young MC
Frog clue: Private jet
Panel guesses: Anthony Mackie, Bow Wow, Derek Hough, Sir Mix a Lot
Rhino’s song: “You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feeling,” by Righteous Brothers
Rhino clue: Navy sailor’s hat
Panel guesses: Jason Aldean, Trace Adkins, David James Elliott
Night Angel’s song: “Last Dance,” by Donna Summer
Night Angel clue: Snow boots and goggles
Panel guesses: Tionne “T-Boz” Watkins, Tameka ‘Tiny’ Harris, Alicia Keys
Turtle’s song: “Fix You,” by Coldplay
Turtle clue: Zombie
Panel guesses: Norman Reedus, Howie D., Jesse McCartney
And here is video of Evancho’s unmasking: