Sunrise's Melanie Amaro wins 'The X Factor'

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Melanie Amaro has " The X Factor."

The powerful 19-year-old vocalist from Sunrise, Fla., won the Fox talent competition Thursday over soulful 30-year-old singer Josh Krajcik of Wooster, Ohio.

Amaro, who was mentored by judge Simon Cowell and was at one point eliminated then reinstated to the contest, was awarded the grand prize: a $5 million recording contract and a starring role in a Pepsi commercial.

"Oh my God. Oh my God. Oh my God," Amaro repeated after host Steve Jones announced her as the champion.

Despite continued prodding from Jones, an overly emotional Amaro couldn't quite formulate words when she was revealed to have captured the most viewer votes, and she struggled through tears to reprise Beyonce's "Listen," the soaring ballad that Amaro crooned at her audition and on Wednesday's final performance round.

"I want to say, 'America, thank you for giving this girl an opportunity,'" said Cowell.

Amaro's parents and siblings were alongside Amaro in Los Angeles for the X Factor finale while her extended family including her aunt and uncle, Angela and Melvin Haynes, watched from their North Lauderdale home.

Amaro is due back in Florida for the Christmas holiday.

Krajcik, the struggling single father who delivered a stripped down rendition of "At Last" for his final routine, seemed content with his status as "X Factor" runner-up to Amaro, who was born in the British Virgin Islands.

"Melanie deserves it," Krajcik said. "She has a wonderful voice. I had such an incredible experience here. I got to be myself, sing what I want to sing, and I couldn't be happier."

Chris Rene, the recovering 28-year-old singer-rapper from Santa Cruz, Calif., came in third place.

NewsChannel 5's Dan Corcoran contributed to this report


Comments