“Mandy will never let deafness silence her, and she has aptly proven that deaf people can do anything.” —Marlee Matlin, Academy Award® winner and star of the 2022 Oscar® winning film CODA
The inspiring true story of America's Got Talent Top Five Finalist Mandy Harvey—a young woman who became deaf at age nineteen while pursuing a degree in music—and how she overcame adversity and found the courage to live out her dreams.
When Mandy Harvey began her freshman year at Colorado State University, she could see her future coming together right before her eyes. A gifted musician with perfect pitch, she planned to get a music degree and pursue a career doing what she loved. But less than two months into her first semester, she noticed she was having trouble hearing her professors. In a matter of months, Mandy was profoundly deaf.
With her dreams so completely crushed, Mandy dropped out of college and suffered a year of severe depression. But one day, things changed. Mandy’s father asked her to join him in their once favorite pastime—recording music together—and the result was stunningly beautiful. Mandy soon learned to sense the vibrations of the music through her bare feet on a stage floor and to watch visual cues from her live accompaniment. The result was that she now sings on key, on beat, and in time, performing jazz, ballads, and sultry blues around the country—and all the way to the final stage of America’s Got Talent.
Full of inspiring wisdom and honest advice, Sensing the Rhythm is a deeply moving story about Mandy’s journey through profound loss, how she found hope and meaning in the face of adversity, and how she discovered a new sense of passion and joy.
Mandy Harvey is an award-winning singer, songwriter, and motivational speaker who lost her residual hearing at the age of nineteen while a freshman vocal major at Colorado State University. She pursued multiple career options, but returned to music, her true passion. She quickly became an in-demand performer and has released four albums. In 2011, Mandy won VSA’s Top Young Soloist Award and lived a personal dream of performing at the Kennedy Center in DC. She continues to perform around the United States and has been featured on CNN, NBC Nightly News, Canada AM, The Steve Harvey Show, and in the Los Angeles Times. She appeared on America’s Got Talent and earned a Golden Buzzer from Simon Cowell for performing her original song “Try.” In addition to performing and speaking, Mandy has become an ambassador for No Barriers USA with a mission to encourage, inspire, and assist others to break through their personal barriers. Sensing the Rhythm is her first book.
Mandy Harvey’s journey is a reaffirmation of what I told reporters after I won my Academy Award, “Silence is the last thing the world will ever hear from me.” Mandy will never let deafness silence her, and she has aptly proven that deaf people can do ANYTHING.
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