An 11-year-old violinist kicked butt on Tuesday’s “America’s Got Talent” and vanquished those who bullied him for having cancer as well.
Tyler Butler-Figueroa said he was diagnosed with leukemia at age 4 and was teased and shunned for losing his hair. Some schoolmates spread rumors that he was contagious, leaving him isolated.
But at age 7, the North Carolina lad signed up for free after-school violin lessons and found himself. “I just didn’t want to be the kid with cancer, so now I’m the kid who plays violin,” he said.
Tyler, who’s been in remission for four years, shredded an instrumental version of Kelly Clarkson’s “Stronger,” drawing particularly high praise from judge Simon Cowell.
“I would like to say something on your behalf to the bullies,” Cowell said. But he didn’t have words. Instead, he pushed the Golden Buzzer to catapult Tyler into the live rounds.
Watch the full performance below.