Melanie Amaro Chosen As 'X Factor' Winner
December 23, 2011 at 7:41 AM (PT)
Nineteen-year-old singer MELANIE AMARO won the first edition of SIMON COWELL’s "X Factor," earning a $5 million recording contract with SONY MUSIC distributed label SYCO, and an appearance in a PEPSI commercial during next year’s SUPER BOWL broadcast.
The SUNRISE, FL singer -- who COWELL earlier sent home during auditions -- beat runner-up JOSH KRAJCIK, the 30-year-old member of the "Over 30s" team mentored by former PUSSYCAT DOLL NICOLE SCHERZINGER.
"We came here to find a superstar and we found a superstar," COWELL said. "Thank you for everyone who supported the show I’m very grateful."
"Thank you so much! I’m so happy -- I’ve wanted this all my life!" AMARO exclaimed. "I don’t even know what to say -- God is good!"
Finishing as second runner-up was CHRIS RENE, who auditioned for the reality competition soon after he left rehab for drug addiction.
The two-hour finale also included performances by JUSTIN BIEBER, STEVIE WONDER, 50 CENT, NE-YO and PITBULL.