Jackie Evancho: Chasing Her Dreams

May 23, 2011

Last fall, a big young voice captured the attention of NBC's America's Got Talent. That big voice is coming from a small young lady — Jackie Evancho.

At just 11 years old, she was the runner-up on the show, but she garnered millions of YouTube views and a record deal. Her classical crossover album Dream With Me is out next month.

Evancho started singing around the age of eight after falling in love with The Phantom Of The Opera.

"I went to see it in theaters and I loved it so much," Evancho tells All Things Considered host Michelle Norris. "When I got home, I started singing the songs around the house and my mom thought I was really good, so she asked me if I wanted to do a talent competition. And I said 'yes, definitely.'"

The newly found fame has Evancho on the road more often than not, but she's okay with the traveling since she's chasing her dream.

"I do feel like I see a plane seat more than I see my own bed," says Evancho. "If I want this to be my dream, I'm going to have to just suck it up and get used to the fact that I'm not seeing home as much as I did."

And while Evancho is not seeing home as much as she once used to, she's trying to stay a kid and not looking too far down the road.

"At this point I try not to think about that, because I think of how horrible my voice could turn into or how great my voice could turn into," says Evancho. "I sometimes get scared of growing up because I really love being young, being little. It's fun. A lot funner than being an adult."

But Evancho is still an 11-year-old who has fears and dreams like every other preteen.

"I'm concerned that if I get older, people aren't going to enjoy me as much as when I was younger. I had a great voice for a little girl, but my voice can't get any bigger when I'm older," says Evancho. "When I know that I've made it, it's when I'll be standing on a red carpet and there's a whole bunch of paparazzi around me. That's when I know I've made it." Copyright 2011 National Public Radio. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.