Talent Recap

What is 9 Year-Old Golden Buzzer Recipient Celine Tam Up to in 2021?

Celine Tam AGTNBC/Instagram

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Celine Tam absolutely dominated the competition at only nine years-old on season 12 of America’s Got Talent. She is now 13 years-old and is keeping busy since her AGT days. Let’s break down everything she’s been up to since she competed on the show.

A Brief History of Celine’s Time on Talent Shows

This powerhouse vocalist was born in Hong Kong and began singing at only three years-old. It’s pretty fitting that she began so early since her father is a vocal coach. He committed himself to his daughter’s musical career after hearing her belt a Celine Dion song.

As Tam got older, she became known as the “Celine Dion of Hong Kong,” when she entered various singing competitions. Before going worldwide, Tam began by entering contests and expos all located in Hong Kong. In 2014, she auditioned for China’s Got Talent and made it to the final round. Even though she was pretty successful on this show, she didn’t gain worldwide recognition until America’s Got Talent in 2017.

Tam was nine years-old at the time of her audition. She stole the heart of America when she sang “My Heart will go on” by Celine Dion. She received a standing ovation, but didn’t get her Golden Buzzer quite yet. Tam came back for the judge cuts and received a Golden Buzzer from guest judge, Laverne Cox. Cox was amazed at the singer’s rendition of “How am I Supposed to Live Without You” by Michael Bolton, so she sent Tam right into the quarterfinals.


Tam did well in the quarterfinals, but she took on a few songs that were a bit too big for her at such a young age. She finished the show out as a semifinalist after performing “How far I’ll go” from Moana. Simon Cowell felt that this was the perfect song for the young singer, but America didn’t agree.

After her elimination, Tam thanked her new fans for joining her journey. A few days after this tweet, Celine Dion retweeted Tam’s post and invited her to her show in Las Vegas.

Celine Tam Advocates on Behalf of Global Education

While on the show, Tam began to write and compose her own music. This is really where her career took a turn since she began performing original songs. In 2019, she took her new talent to the stage of World’s Got Talent and received yet another Golden Buzzer. Tam became a finalist that year after auditioning with an original song, which is pretty rare.

Nowadays, her schedule is still pretty packed when she isn’t performing or attending school like a normal kid, she is quite the little activist. In 2020, Tam posted a detailed YouTube video centered around advocating against animal products. Within the video, she goes into detail to describe the process behind obtaining some of your favorite foods and cosmetic products. It’s so obvious that Tam is extremely knowledgeable and passionate about this topic.

Last year, she announced that she had become a Room to Read ambassador. Room to Read is a global non-profit focused on literacy and girls’ education. This foundation hopes to bring education (schools and libraries) to countries that currently lack the means to create them. As an ambassador, Tam participates in fundraisers that advocate for gender equality in literacy.

Most recently, she has become an author at only 13 years-old. Her story, titled “Harper,” raises awareness about the harmful effects of bullying. On her website and Instagram, Celine writes about the high percentages of people who fall into depression for this reason. In an act of charity, all of the proceeds from the project are being donated to CODA Hong Kong, an organization dedicated to enhancing the lives of children with deaf parents. 

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