Kelly Clarkson Recalls the Pivotal Moment a Stranger Changed Her Life

By Scott T. Sterling

Kelly Clarkson remembers.

The pop superstar has shared memories of a pivotal moment from her childhood that she says inspired her to pursue a career as a singer.

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Clarkson told Cosmopolitan about the mysterious stranger who approached her at a school talent show when she was 13 to lavish her with praise for her vocals after a performance of Mariah Carey’s “Visions of Love.”

She assumed the older man was a grandfather of a fellow student when he sought her out after the performance but was stunned by what he said: “That was so amazing, you’re gonna do this for the rest of your life.”

“I don’t even think I said ‘thank you,’” Clarkson recalled. “I was taken aback because I’d never received any kind of compliment like that. It was a really pivotal moment for someone to come up to me and instill that confidence at such a young age,” she added. “From that moment, all I focused on was singing, whether it was getting a scholarship for college or trying out for [American] Idol.”

All these years later, and Clarkson still thinks about the mysterious stranger with such kind words.

“Was he real?,” she wondered out loud. “We all have these moments in our life that are so pivotal… that really was that fork in the road that sent [me] on a completely different path.”

Watch Kelly Clarkson recall that fateful moment in the video below.

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