'The World's Best': See the 'Miracle Violinist' Who Left Judges in Tears

The World's Best is starting off on an inspiring note as one-armed Japanese violinist Manami Ito brought the audience to tears with a stirring performance on the CBS series' premiere.

In Sunday's premiere of the James Corden-hosted variety competition show, featuring judges Faith Hill, RuPaul, Drew Barrymore and representatives from around the world, the "miracle violinist" performed to a weeping judges' panel with her specially crafted prosthetic arm.

"I started playing violin at the age of 7, and I loved it," she explained in her intro. "When I was 20, I was in a car accident with a large truck. I had no choice but to give up playing the violin. I lost all hope. I left school and didn't leave the house for a year."

Despite losing hope in her future as a musician, Ito continued, "Something that really stuck with me was my mother said, 'Please play the violin again for me someday.'"

"I'm very excited for people to listen to me," she added. "I truly hope to inspire them."

That she did, as all three of the celebrity judges fought their tears as her performance played out on stage.

Barrymore said after the performance, "I think not only are you talented but your perspective on life is something that the world definitely needs."

Hill chimed in, "I believe that there's nothing stronger than the human spirit. So when you decide you can do something, there are no limits whatsoever. And you've proven that tonight."

RuPaul added, "It was absolutely beautiful and it really made me proud to witness your grace and your way of overcoming adversity. This is a lesson that every human alive needs to learn."

Ito understandably made it through to the next round of the CBS show with a total of 86 points out of a possible 100.

Social media immediately fell in love with the musician as well:

"This literally almost made me cry!!" one user wrote of her performance. "This is amazing. I love it. Stay strong!!"

Another added, "If you look up #shero, inspiration, beauty, and talent in the dictionary you would see [Ito]. We need more. Much more of her."


The World's Best airs Wednesdays at 8 p.m. ET on CBS.

Photo credit: CBS