In a live performance that ‘X Factor’ judge Nicole Scherzinger labeled as ‘ethereal’, Drew Ryniewicz (now known as Drew) reached into the hearts of the audience last night and pulled them into her soul with her rendition of the ‘Flashdance’ theme song. Paula Abdul felt she displayed her ‘vulnerability’ and ability to connect to the audience. She also stated, ‘You are way beyond your years, my Dear. Congratulations.’ LA Reid quickly noted ‘You are the whole package’ and said ‘You are a star.’
Flint area ‘X Factor’ fan Audrey Hale told me she was on the edge of her seat waiting for Drew’s mentor, Simon Cowell to weigh in. Cowell praised Drew, stating simply ‘This is why I want to be back on American TV, to find someone like you.’ But then he quickly added that he liked all of his girls, and it was going to be very hard letting anyone go.
Drew has been a standout for many local ‘X Factor’ fans from her first audition. Hale described her appeal to me following her live ‘What a Feeling’ performance, saying:
‘There’s something about Drew’s voice that makes you want to sit still and listen. She draws you in and makes you feel something – like an emotional connection to the song that is stronger than any of the other performers offer. I want to buy her CD right now. Simon is 100% right. Drew is a star.’
Cowell called Drew ‘a revelation’ in her pre-performance footage. He also felt her judges’ house performance was the best of the whole day. Cowell made Drew his first ‘X Factor’ final 12 pick. He said:
‘Let me start with what is probably the easiest decision I’ve ever made in my life. We are looking at a future star – recording star. My first girl through is Drew.’
The crowd went wild with approval and Drew screamed with joy. At 14-years-old, she’s already garnered support from over 7,000 Twitter followers and up and coming stars like ‘Glee Project’ winner Damian McGinty.
Starting next week, Drew’s fate falls in America’s hands. Local fan Audrey Hale finished her thoughts with this:
‘Drew’s got my vote. I hope America sees what I see, but more importantly, what Simon Cowell sees. He knows what he’s doing. He’s a star seeker – and he’s definitely found one with Drew.’
Public voting begins following the ‘X Factor’ final 12 contestant performances next Wednesday which airs in Flint on WSMH FOX66 at 8 PM EST.