|Age (at audition)||74|
|Act||Singer and Pianist|
Mary Ellen is a singer and musician who was born in 1936 and currently resides in Manheim, Pennsylvania. As a child, Mary Ellen, along with her four brothers were surrounded by music. Her father played the banjo and her mother played the piano. She has loved music for as long as she can remember. At the young age of 16, she dropped out of high school to work and help her family after her father fell ill. She had a variety of jobs throughout her life, including waiting tables, selling shoes and operating machines in a factory. After working twelve years at the factory, she was forced to leave her job due to a medical condition. When she recovered from her illness four years later, she purchased an electric piano and her passion for music was re-ignited. Since then, she has touched the hearts of many by singing at her church, as well as performing at senior homes and local events. Her ultimate dream is to help and provide care for her brother who recently suffered from a stroke, build a playground for handicapped children in her neighborhood and maybe one day make a record. 1
Mary Ellen's audition in Episode 504 consisted of singing "Crazy" while playing the keyboard, and briefly yodeling. Piers Morgan, Sharon Osbourne, and Howie Mandel (Sharon buzzed for him) all buzzed the act. Although Piers voted "No," Sharon and Howie both voted "Yes," sending Mary to the Vegas Round.
Mary Ellen was one of the Judges' Favorites in the Vegas Round. She was sorted into the "Female Singers" category. Her performance in Episode 511 consisted of singing "Kansas City" for about ten minutes while playing the keyboard. Her audition was strong enough for the judges to send her to the Quarterfinals.
Mary Ellen's Quarterfinals performance in Episode 519 consisted of singing "Boot Scootin' Boogie" while playing the keyboard. Piers Morgan buzzed the act. She did not receive enough votes to finish in at least fourth or fifth place in America's Vote, eliminating her from the competition in Episode 520 along with Doogie Horner, instead of MURRAY.
- Mary Ellen was one of only two Season 5 acts (the other being Ms. Donna) to have been buzzed by all three judges yet progressed to the next round.
- She gave the longest performance in the history of the show; her Las Vegas Round performance was about ten minutes long.