What Happened to ‘America’s Got Talent’ Season 1 Winner Bianca Ryan?
Only a year after Bianca Ryan competed on Star Search, she competed on Season 1 of America’s Got Talent. Just 11 years old at the time, she shocked judges Piers Morgan, Brandy Norwood, and David Hasselhoff with her performance of Jennifer Holiday’s ‘And I Am Telling You I’m Not Going.’ Where is the talented singer now?
After the judges sent Bianca straight to the semifinals, capturing America’s vote helped earn her a spot in the finals. With a powerful rendition of another Broadway classic, ‘I Am Changing,’ the young singer went on to win the show. With personal challenges, new music, and acting in her future, Bianca’s $1 million prize helped catapult her into the elite club of talent competition winners. Months after her win, she became the first American artist to sign with Simon Cowell’s SYCO music label.
Bianca Ryan Creates New Music After AGT
Since her time on America’s Got Talent, Bianca has released four albums. The first was her self-titled solo album, ‘Bianca Ryan,’ which debuted at No. 57 on the Billboard charts. Although Bianca felt as though she did not have any creative control, critics were impressed with the album.
The singer followed up with, ‘The Reintroduction,’ ‘What the World Needs Now Is Love,’ and ‘True Meaning of Christmas.’ Bianca’s resume also includes credits on Broadway. In 2017, she was featured in ‘Home For The Holidays’ alongside American Idol Season 12 winner, Candice Glover, and The Voice Season 6 winner, Josh Kaufman. Her independent feature film credits include the crowdsourced ‘We Are Kings.’ What many may not know is that the 27 year old, fought her way back from a singer’s worst nightmare: vocal surgery.
“After America’s Got Talent, my life was a total whirlwind,” Bianca shared, when she returned to America’s Got Talent: The Champions in 2019. “I was touring, I was doing music videos. Then after a few years I noticed my voice just wasn’t working with me.”
Returning to compete in an all star season of the talent competition was a triumph for Bianca.
“I finally went to an EMT, and he was like, ‘Basically, one of your vocal cords is paralyzed. You’re gonna need surgery and there is a chance you’ll never be able to sing again,'” she said.
Bianca did not get discouraged with the news about her singing capabilities, instead she worked hard to heal her voice. Her talent was on full display when she made her comeback during the 2019 show. The Season 1 champion blew audiences away, singing A Great Big World’s hit single, ‘Say Something.’ The original winner won second place in the fan voting.
“I think without you, we may not be sitting here,” said judge Simon Cowell said after her performance. “I’m genuinely thrilled that you’re back, this was a great start for the show.”
With her vocal abilities intact, Bianca recently released a cover of ‘Stay,’ The Kid Lori’s 2021 chart-topping hit. The cover received over 3.3 million views and showed fans that she is not giving up on her dreams, no matter the obstacles. The viral cover is from the female perspective, as she says that she had to battle back from confidence issues after years of intense pressure.
The singer that was once hailed “the next revolution in the music industry” by the legendary Quincy Jones, also formed her own record label, hoping that she could make music with her own artistic freedom. With music still on her mind, Bianca is also an entrepreneur. She formed her own beauty brand, Ciao Bianco. Bianca takes pride in her brand being female owned and cruelty free.