Right after the Super Bowl on Sunday night, viewers were introduced to a brand new talent show called The World’s Best. Helmed by host James Corden and celebrity judges Drew Barrymore, RuPaul, and Faith Hill, The World’s Best poised itself to be a talent competition show like we’ve never seen – and it is.
The contestants not only perform in front of the three American judges, they also perform for 50 additional international judges that make up “The Wall of The World.” As Corden says in the video below, there are “essentially a collective of fifty-three opinions” and they all get a vote, too.
After a contestant performs, the American judges give their critiques and award them a score out of 50. Then, the Wall of the World gets to vote if they think the performer should move on to the next round.
One contestant that won over the American judges, the Wall of the World, and everyone watching from home was a violinist from Japan named Manami Ito. Her story is unique, emotional, and truly incredible.
She started playing the violin at seven years old, but was injured in a car accident when she was 20. She revealed in her pre-performance package that she “had no choice but to give up playing the violin,” but never revealed why.
Her mother eventually convinced her to start playing after over a year of not leaving the house, and now she’s competing on The World’s Best.
The camera slowly revealed Ito’s injury during her performance – she had lost her arm in that car accident.
She mastered her talent with the help of a prosthetic bow, which she began using in October 2016. According to a post on her Facebook page, her prosthetic is lightweight, and is exclusively for violin playing.
It didn’t take long for all the judges to see how incredible Ito was, not only for her perseverance through her injury, but also for her talent. Faith Hill was in tears just a few notes in. The camera panned to some of the international judges, and they were too.
The camera panned to the “This Kiss” singer, and she was emotional throughout Ito’s entire performance. Her emotions translated into her judging.
“I believe that there’s nothing stronger than the human spirit,” Hill said during her critique. “When we decide we can do something, there are no limits whatsoever and you’ve proven that tonight.”
Watch Ito’s inspiring performance below, and make sure to keep the tissues close.