“Well, it was one of my big dreams, but also I would like to keep ventriloquism alive because it’s not common, you know,” she told the judges. “Ventriloquism kind of helped me find my voice. It’s really helped me come out of my shell. My shyness is getting better.”
And her voice -- or rather, her puppet’s, Petunia the rabbit -- was on full display as she sang the familiar lyrics of “Summertime,” made famous by Janis Joplin, shocking everyone in the theater and those who were watching at home. She impressed the judges so much that she ended up getting the golden buzzer, which sends her straight to the live shows.
“I believe that that rabbit is a real separate person,” judge Howie Mandel said as Darci erupted in tears. “I love you. I believe you’re gonna go far. You just changed your life tonight, young lady.”
“You make my hear melt,” judge Mel Bs said as she hit the golden buzzer, sending Darci into happy tears as her mother rushed out on stage to hug her.
“We had an act early on who were very good, but I’m not gonna remember them in an hour,” added fellow judge Simon Cowell. “I’m gonna remember you in a week, in a month, in a year. You’re both brilliant and when you’ve got it, you’ve got it.”