Teen singer Courtney Hadwin predicted to win America's Got Talent by judge Howie Mandel
Singing sensation Courtney Hadwin has made it into the final of America's Got Talent after another barnstorming performance on US TV.
After singing and energetic rendtition of Born to be Wild, TV judge Howie said: “My prediction is you’re going to be the winner.”
The 14-year-old, a pupil at The Academy at Shotton Hall in Peterlee, was one of five acts to make it through from Wednesday's semi-finals after winning a public vote.
They joined five other acts who had already advanced.
The semi-final, held at Hollywood's Dolby Theatre, was opened with a performance from K-pop superstars BTS.
The group was greeted by screaming fans as they performed their hit single Idol.
Courtney appeared emotional when she was told she was through and thanked her father, Paul, who was waiting backstage.
During the first leg of the semi-final on Tuesday, Courtney performed a cover of Steppenwolf's 1969 hit Born To Be Wild, leading judge Simon Cowell to praise her as a "bundle of excitement" and a "maniac".
Cowell's fellow judge, Howie Mandel, had used his golden buzzer on Courtney earlier in the season, meaning she skipped a stage and went straight through to the live shows.
Following her semi-final performance, he said: "You were born to be wild! This was wild! You were amazing.
“My prediction is you're going to be the winner."
Model Heidi Klum, the third judge, was also impressed and said the schoolgirl was "authentic and original".
However, Spice Girl Mel B thought Courtney looked nervous.
Courtney, who lives in Hesleden, is widely considered the favourite in the competition, after previously impressing judges with covers of Otis Redding's Hard To Handle and James Brown's Papa's Got A Brand New Bag.
The winner of America's Got Talent season 13 will be crowned during a two-night final beginning on September 18.
After getting through to the final she tweeted: "Wow I want to thank every single person that voted for me I’m so grateful tonight and in shock thank you guys for believing in me and @howiemandel you have believed in my from right at the beginning can’t thank you enough."
Courtney won the title of the Hartlepool Mail’s Performer of the Year at the Best of Hartlepool Awards last year.
She has already stared on ITV’s The Voice Kids last year making it to the final of the show, but narrowly missed out on the title.
The teen also appeared as part of the South Tyneside Festival summer concert line up in Bents Park in South Shields in July last year where she entertained more than 18,000 people.
The schoolgirl was supporting music legends Sister Sledge at the annual event, which saw her manage to get the crowd on their feet during her energetic three-song set.