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Why the “Possessed” 14-Year-Old Mariandrea Traveled from Mexico to Dance on AGT

A teenager, Mariandrea, brought a message of hope from Mexico for her fellow young women as she auditioned for America's Got Talent.

By Caitlin Schunn

A teenager journeyed all the way to the U.S. from her home country to dance on America’s Got Talent, share a big message with the world, and show why you should never judge a book by its cover.

How to Watch

Watch America’s Got Talent Tuesdays at 8/7c on NBC and next day on Peacock

“I’m here on AGT because I really want to inspire all the younger Mexican women to know they’re limitless,” 14-year-old Mariandrea Villegas said during her Audition.

Who is Mariandrea?

Mariandrea traveled from Mexico to the U.S. for her AGT audition with her mother and father. She’s already racked up quite a social media following, with videos of her dancing getting more than 200,000 views on TikTok.

She appeared to be a “sweet little girl” according to Judge Sofia Vergara, but that image changed by the end of her Audition.

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Mariandrea told the Judges she’d been dancing since she was 5 years old, but never in front of an audience that large. Praising her goal to inspire Mexican women, Judge Howie Mandel asked her what she’d do if she won the competition and the $1 million.

“Well, I will of course use it for my college future,” she replied. “And I really like makeup, so maybe makeup. And I want to travel the world.”

What song did Mariandrea dance to on AGT?

Mariandrea onstage at Americas Got Talent

Mariandrea wore a gray and black dress as she danced to a cover of “Mad World” by Tears For Fears.

Judge Simon Cowell praised her song choice.

“You have a real presence about you,” Cowell said of the audition. “And I loved the choice in music as well. I think you’re unbelievably talented. This is what you’re meant to be doing.”

Her style was a mix of ballet and lyrical at the beginning. But about halfway through the performance, she removed part of her costume, revealing an all-black body suit. Her moves also changed at this point to more mysterious, even spider-like at times. While doing flips and splits, she also had many facial expressions — fear, anger, sorrow. and even happiness.

The Judges gave her a standing ovation at the end of the dance.

What did the Judges think of Mariandrea?

Mariandrea's Dancing Will Leave You SPEECHLESS! | Auditions | AGT 2023 | NBC

Vergara, who immediately took to Mariandrea’s message about inspiring Latina women, was full of praise.

“That was so wow — what a surprise!” Vergara said. “That was spectacular. You were like dancing and acting at the same time. The passion, the attention — speechless.”

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Judge Heidi Klum pointed out Mariandrea can hold her own against any other adult dancers in the competition, and will “give them a run for their money.”

“You stand there, you look like this cute girl, you have this beautiful face and smile and then all of the sudden she’s possessed,” Klum said. “You’re a partial contortionist — I mean everything.”

Mariandrea received four “yes” votes from the Judges to move on in the competition.

“It was like magic watching you,” Mandel said. “Like, your facial expressions, the energy. You own the stage, you own the building, you own the show, you were magnificent.”

Watch America’s Got Talent on Tuesdays at 8/7c on NBC and the next day on PeacockFollowing AGT, you can watch Hot Wheels: Ultimate Challenge Tuesdays at 10/9c on NBC and next day on Peacock.