“When you’re autistic, it’s really hard to do what everyone else does.”
Kodi Lee’s mum held her son’s arm as she explained his story to the packed America’s Got Talent auditorium.
Kodi said hello, and gave the audience a smile, clinging to his support cane as he took in the view.
“I’m going to sing you a song on the piano,” he told the judges when they asked why he was there.
“I’m readdddayyyy” he told them, to giggles from the audience.
You can watch Kodi’s performance here. Post continues after video.
The 22-year-old has autism and is blind.
“We found out that he loved music really early on. He listened and his eyes just went huge, and he started singing, and that’s when I was in tears … I just realised, oh my god, he’s an entertainer,” Tina Lee told Simon Cowell, Gabrielle Union, Julianne Hough and Howie Mandel.
“Through music and performing he was able to withstand living in this world.
“It saved his life, playing music,” she told them.
Sitting at the piano, she gave her son a pep-talk.
“This is your time OK, there’s going to be like 20 film cameras on you OK?” she whispers.
“Yeahhhh,” he tells her.
“Go, boom,” she says and then quickly leaves the stage.
When Keni's fingers hit the keys and his voice echoes into the microphone, it's an immediate jaw drop.
He is insanely talented.
He delivers a flawless cover of Donny Hathaway's A Song For You.
The judges are in tears, mum is in tears, we're in tears, the audience is on their feet.
His range, the depth of his voice, how he carries himself - he is a true entertainer.