According to the commercial, “The world runs on Dunkin.” However, I am thinking for most young musicians they must run on Starbucks. I am sitting outside an Austin Starbucks waiting for the arrival of Kadie Lynn. Kadie Lynn Roberson recently finished in the semifinals of season 11 America’s Got Talent.
I watch as Kadie Lynn speaks the Starbucks language and orders for everyone in the party. I became lost in the conversation when it no longer centered on large coffee. Kadie is enjoying a break in her day. She just completed a special presentation at Lake Travis High School.
At first glance, Kadie appears to be much like every 12-year-old girl walking into a Starbucks. However, the similarities quickly end. Most do not know Kadie Lynn auditions for America’s Got Talent in Dallas during season 10. “The producers called,” shared Kadie Lynn. “They told me it was not my time. I needed to wait a little while.”
As auditions neared for season 11 the producers called and said, “its your time now. So I auditioned in San Antonio. I was selected to go through to the live auditions.” From the live auditions Kadie continued to advance through quarterfinals to semifinals where here tenure with the show would end.
Kadie’s producer added, “Acts on the show are truly picked and ranked on talent. They are selected for the show based on talent and America decides after quarterfinals if a contestant will continue to advance.”
“We search through thousands and thousands of auditions,” added the producer. “Now people can audition online or send in a tape of their audition they do not have to attend a live audition.”
“Attending a live audition is a benefit,” said Lynn. “You hang out with so many of the contestants, you meet new people, and you strengthen your performance by attending the audition process. It is hard, you perform and then you wait and wait.”
Kadie Lynn returned to her hometown of Kemp, Texas after her season 10 auditions. “I returned home to work harder,” added Kadie. “I attended bigger and better gigs. I practiced more and every opportunity I found to sing, I would take it. I received vocal lessons.
America’s Got Talent opened doors. I believe my singing career is already better because of the show. Last week, I flew to Nashville to visit with the producers and am waiting to learn if I will have a label deal.”
One of Kadie Lynn’s favorite acts in season 11 was Sofi Dossi. “I admire her so much. I cannot do a cartwheel. The stunts she performed were so dangerous but so amazing. I really enjoyed being on the show with her.”
When asked to classify her music, Kadie responded,” Country. I don’t look too Country except for my boots. I am not into the mainstream or popular. I believe Country is making a come back. “
Kadie had to entertain the viewing audience and she had to provide music and a performance they deemed worthy as they cast the final decision regarding her advancing or not.
“The show has helped with Nashville,” remarked Kadie. “There are so many singers in Nashville. So many people who have made it. There is so much competition. The show prepared me and taught me ways to face the pressure of the industry.”
For those who are considering traveling to Austin on Saturday, November 19 to audition, Kadie says, “Do it. Most of the people at the auditions are laid back. Don’t be nervous yet, because your not on TV yet. It will provide exposure for yourself and will teach you to push yourself further than you have before.”
Kadie experienced a rush of people trying to book her for performances. “I have a hard time saying no. These are people who want to see me. Last year, I performed at 300 gigs. I expect to do many more this next year.”
Kadie’s biggest gig came up on November 15 when she participated in the East Texas audition process. “I was allowed to award front of the line tickets for the audition,” added Kadie. “I have started watching the videos, and I will be part of the panel that will listen to those live to determine who will receive front of the line tickets.”
I pause a moment and I evaluate the young musician and singer sitting poised in a chair next to the entrance to Starbucks. Sitting in the chair is a growing veteran of the performance industry. Easily one forgets she is 12 but remains poised in the elevator to her success. I image months from now, watching as she strides into the recording studio in Nashville. No longer a child, but a star humble in her beginning. A refreshing breath of fresh air when you compare her to so many of the young stars struggling to find their way.
Kadie encourages everyone to take a moment and be a part of the audition process, which makes a stop in Austin, Texas tomorrow. According to the producers as long as you are signed in and in line by 7pm Saturday night, you will receive an audition. Soon season 12 will start and a young girl or boy from Texas may just realize their dreams and perform in the finals of America’s Got Talent.