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Living in the Glow
When I first saw and heard Nightbirde sing, “It’s OK,” I was struck by how focused she was on being present and ready to sing. But there was more - a watchfulness, intensity, and translucence about her - as if she was choosing each word, each gesture, each answer to the judges’ seemingly mundane questions with great care. But Howie Mandel (one of the judges) was so intent on his scripted questions - how old are you, who’s here with you, what is your dream, what will you be singing - that he completely missed the rarefied glow that had accompanied this young woman onto the stage. In the end it was Simon Cowell who sensed the undercurrents and asked the difficult question, “How are you now?”
“It’s important that everyone knows I’m so much more than the bad things that happen to me,” Nightbirde said, thereby making her intentions clear. She was there to put everyone on notice - to remind them and herself that life was more than the challenges we encounter and she had something to say about that.
“It’s OK,” is an exquisite song. I believe she was singing it as much for herself as the audience and the judges. It is the song of a soul intent on speaking its truth. A soul intent on delivering a message that was meant to live on beyond the voice that embodied it.
The proof of Nightbirde’s success can be heard in the voices of the Mzansi Youth Choir whose members not only embraced the message but took it to a new level as well. And if you listen carefully - close your eyes and let the harmonies wash over you like a blessing - you will hear the flutter of Nightbirde’s smile dancing within the rhythms, the gentle tug of her words at your heart reminding you that wherever and however your life is being lived, it’s OK.
A Bit About Nightbirde - Click the image above to hear an interview
Jane Kristen Marczewski, known professionally as Nightbirde, was a singer, songwriter, and cancer survivor. Many remember her as the winner of Simon Cowell’s Golden Buzzer on America’s Got Talent in 2021, but most remember her wise words and demeanor.
Her ability to say, “You can’t wait until life isn’t hard anymore before you decide to be happy” in the face of terminal cancer gave hope to millions of people watching. She knew that she was so much more than the bad things that had happened to her, and that truth gave tens of thousands of people encouragement and hope.
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Copyright 2023 by Jena Ball. All Rights Reserved.