Emmanuel Kelly Moves “The X Factor” Judges to Tears

I was lying in bed one night a few months ago daydreaming about shows like American Idol, America’s Got Talent and X Factor. I was thinking that the most moving performance possible would be by a contestant who had lost a limb or two in war who would limp out on stage, share his inspiring story, and then wow the audience with a heartfelt rendition of an emotionally powerful song. I drifted off to sleep with that scene in my mind, never dreaming that it would actually happen someday.

Well, it has. Meet Emmanuel Kelly. As children in Iraq, Emmanuel and his brother Ahmed were victims of chemical warfare. The brothers were adopted by a saintly Australian woman, and Emmanuel is now pursuing his dream of becoming a singer.

After Emmanuel’s performance, he was interviewed in the video below by Today Tonight, Australia’s top current affairs program.

Following his audition, Emmanuel sang a short selection at The X Factor Boot Camp in hopes of making it through to the next round. Yep, he made it. Shocker!

In the next round, Emmanuel’s nervousness got the better of him and he forgot the words to his song.

Shockingly, Emmanuel was eliminated from the competition.

Emmanuel was lovingly welcomed back to the Grand Finale to perform with the Top 12 contestants and briefly solo on Imagine and Let It Be.

Here’s a story of Emmanuel’s August 28, 2011 audition on The X Factor Australia by Fiona Byrne of Australia’s Herald Sun.

Plucky Melbourne singer Emmanuel Kelly is dreaming of a recording career after moving tough judges to tears on “The X Factor”

Emmanuel, the adopted son of Children First Foundation boss Moira Kelly, wowed Ronan Keating, Spice Girl Mel Brown, Natalie Bassingthwaighte and Guy Sebastian with his heartfelt performance of the John Lennon classic Imagine on last night’s audition show.

Emmanuel and his brother Ahmed were adopted from Iraq, both suffering limb deficiencies as a result of chemical warfare.

They were abandoned at an orphanage and rescued by Ms Kelly, who is also the guardian of the once-conjoined Bangladeshi twins, Krishna and Trishna.

Emmanuel said it was “more than magic” to be on X Factor”.

“Words could not describe what I was feeling on that stage,” he said.

“When I got up and started singing, there was nothing else. Adrenalin just took over. It was just a blur.”

Emmanuel said he believes he had a gift.

“Singing is what I love doing and singing is the only thing I want to do,” he said.

“I know plenty of singers that are 50 times better than I am, it is just they chose not to follow that path. Singing is the path I want to follow and some doors have opened up now and I just want to push even more.

“I just want to sing and I want to make people happy.”

Kelly said his damaged limbs had not held him back and that he was not looking for sympathy.

“I have actually been through nothing compared to some of the other kids I have met and mum has brought out,” he said.

“I don’t want people to look at it (his performance) and go: ‘Wow that is brave.’ I want people to look at me and go, ‘Wow, he has got a really good voice’ or ‘Wow, he is going to go far in life,’ not, ‘Wow, that is brave for him to do that’.”

Emmanuel’s rendition of Imagine earned a standing ovation from the judges and packed audience.

Ronan Keating was full of praise for Emmanuel who has now moved into the next round of competition.

“I don’t think I’ve ever been moved as I was by that performance,” he said.

Emmanuel auditioned for Australia’s Got Talent last year but did not make it on to the show.

Emmanuel Kelly belts out a song with the support of mom Moira Kelly and brother Ahmed. (Photo by David Caird of the Herald Sun)

Here is Emmanuel and his bandmates singing Amazed by <span Lonestar.

Click here to view the best acts from The X Factor, America’s Got Talent and Britain’s Got Talent.


If you feel more stressed than blessed . . . if you have more confusion than clarity about how to live your beliefs . . . if you long to live a richer, happier, more meaningful life . . . you will find a wealth of insight and guidance in Through God’s Eyes: Finding Peace and Purpose in a Troubled World.

Through God’s Eyes is a road map for living a more peaceful, beautiful life. It’s the only book that explains how dozens of spiritual principles interact, how to weave them together into a cohesive worldview, and how to practically apply this spiritual wisdom to daily life.

Readers everywhere are discovering that when you challenge yourself to look through God’s eyes, the world around you changes, and so do you.

Who will benefit from reading Through God’s Eyes?
Anyone who is on a spiritual path, or wants to be.
Anyone who loves life, or wants to learn how to.
Anyone who is happy, or wants to be happier.

Click here to order your copy of Through God’s Eyes from GodsEyesAmazon.com.
For an inscribed copy, click here to e-mail Phil for information.

Click here to visit the Through God’s Eyes website.

Click on the link below to download a FREE 28-page chapter!

Click here to read endorsements from authors and thought leaders.

Click here to read unsolicited testimonials from readers.

Click here to ask Phil to add you to his e-mail list for updates on his blog and books.

Here is a two-minute video introduction to Through God’s Eyes.

Like to learn more about Through God’s Eyes? Here is a free 44-page PDF sampler from the book that includes:

• an overview of the book
• the complete table of contents
• the Foreword by Caroline Myss
• my Introduction
• chapter excerpts
• a sample end-of-chapter story
• endorsements from authors and thought leaders

Just click on the link below to download your free PDF sampler!

Schedule a Mastery Mentoring phone session with Phil to learn how to apply principles of spiritual living more effortlessly and effectively. Priced affordably! Click here to e-mail Phil for details.


Phil’s eBook, The Logic of Living a Spiritual Life: Supporting a Life of Faith Through Logic and Reason, is now available for 99 cents.

Order it at GodIsLogical.com.

In this eBook, you’ll find answers to questions like:
• What is the cornerstone of a spiritual life, and why?
• What is the secret to liberating yourself from other people’s judgments and expectations?
• How do you reconcile the “free will vs. Divine Will” conundrum?
• Why is there an exception to “Everything happens for a reason”?

Those who worship logic instead of God are only half right. Not only is it logical to believe in God and to live a faith-based life, the existence of a loving, benevolent God that governs all creation is perhaps the only systematic worldview that explains every aspect of life.

sixty-seconds-coverPhil is also the author of Sixty Seconds: One Moment Changes Everything, a collection of 45 inspiring, life-changing stories from prominent authors and thought leaders he interviewed. The roster of storytellers includes Wayne Dyer, Deepak Chopra, Neale Donald Walsch, Caroline Myss, Larry Dossey, Rachel Naomi Remen, Bernie Siegel, Dean Ornish, and Christiane Northrup. Sixty Seconds has been translated into four languages: Italian, German, Spanish, and Portuguese. Reading this book is like spending a few minutes face to face with each of the contributors and listening to their personal stories.

Click here to order Sixty Seconds.

Learn more by visiting the official Sixty Seconds website.

Click here to read unsolicited testimonials from readers.

Here is a three-minute video introduction to Sixty Seconds.

Tags: , ,

13 Responses to “Emmanuel Kelly Moves “The X Factor” Judges to Tears”

  1. Ari Bancale Says:

    You should get on Google+ and share more inspiration there. Thank you for this.

  2. Phil Bolsta Says:

    I’ve heard of Google+ and will definitely look into it. Thank you for the suggestion, Ari.

  3. M.D. Senseng Says:

    Thanks Phil for sending me this link. The world will not be another Sodom and Gomorrah. There are still good people as you see. The real hero here, as Emmanuel said, is not him but their adopted mother Moira Kelly.

  4. Phil Bolsta Says:

    Agreed, M.D. That said, we all have to do our part to put positive, loving energy out into the world, too. It’s up to all of us.

  5. lou Says:

    Thanks Phi, what a moving story. We witness a true angel, thanks again…..

  6. Phil Bolsta Says:

    You’re very welcome, Lou!

  7. jane ronca Says:


  8. Phil Bolsta Says:

    Thank you for your comment, Jane. I suspect that despite their physical challenges, Emmanuel and his brother feel very blessed indeed.

  9. Kierans Dagmar Says:

    Emmanuel and his brother feel very blessed indeed

  10. Kierans Dagmar Says:

    and watching Emanuel singing “Imagine” I was moved to tears.

  11. Phil Bolsta Says:

    “Moving” is certainly the right word for Emmanuel’s performance, Kierans.

  12. Leonard B Nixon Says:

    When I hear “Emmanuel Kelly” sing I sat here and cried like a 68 year old baby. God gave him the voice and I do hope he does carry on and I will be looking for more.

  13. Phil Bolsta Says:

    Trust me, you’re not the only crybaby out there, Leonard. Yes, let’s hope there’s more to come from Emmanuel and sooner rather than later.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: