Edon Pinchot credits his sister for success on ‘America’s Got Talent’
Since they were babies, Edon Pinchot took his musical cues from big sister Arianne. Edon's now 14 and a semi-finalist on "America's Got Talent."
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Updated: September 29, 2012 6:13AM
Little brothers always want to best their older sisters.
Except Edon Pinchot, 14, of Skokie.
What began as a fond admiration for an older sibling’s musical might has the teen standing on one of America’s biggest stages.
The kippah-wearing pop singer/pianist is one of 24 acts currently vying for the $1 million grand prize on NBC’s “America’s Got Talent.”
Known simply as Edon in the talent competition, the young crooner gains more fame and fans with each performance, just as he did when he first started performing from home a few years ago.
The fourth of five siblings, Edon said he looked up to his sister, Arianne, now 18, not only for her musical talents but because she was “always happy.”
He mimicked his sister’s singing and took up the piano at age 9. Once he reached adolescence his voice became the stronger of the two, Arianne said.
Though all her children enjoy singing together, Laurie Pinchot said Arianne and Edon share an extra-special bond. As kids the siblings would re-enact plays together at home and on stage. Whenever Arianne sang and dance Edon was there watching, she said.
“She has been feeding him a steady diet of Broadway musicals since he was a baby,” Laurie said of her daughter. “Music is what they share.”
Edon’s success has only strengthened Arianne’s support, Laurie said.
“She is just so encouraging of him,” she said. “There is no jealousy.”
Arianne said her friends also took notice of her kid brother’s talent and began making requests for their favorite songs.
Some girls recorded his performances on their smart phones to replay later.
Two years ago, Arianne and a friend hatched the idea to post the videos online. Thus a teenage heartthrob — now sometimes referred to as the “Jewish Justin Bieber” — was born.
Edon practiced for each round of “America’s Got Talent” the past six months —covering “Good Life” by OneRepublic and David Guetta’s “Without You” and “Titanium” — in the family’s living room with both his sister and dad by his side.
Now, when friends visit they want to take photos with that “famous piano,” she said.
The performer has taken his newfound fame in stride. The show’s judges and fans know him for his humble demeanor and poise as much as his big voice.
“It’s really cool that people pick me to make a connection with,” he said. “With these performances, so many new people come along.
“Everything keeps building.”
He tugs at the heartstrings of Jewish youth in particular.
Arianne said a summer family trip to the Big Apple resulted in a mob of teenage girls spotting Edon and following them down the street.
“If that was me I would be standing there all day soaking it up,” she said. “But he wants to be regular. He’s very modest.”
When Edon steps onstage Tuesday for his grandest performance yet, his big sister will be on a plane bound for the Middle East for a “gap year” of study with other Jewish teens.
She said she would watch a recording of the show with Edon’s fans in Israel. Future classmates have already inquired whether she’s related to the young star.
“I think I’m going to be slightly famous because of him,” Arianne said.
Laurie said the brother-sister duo would like have jam sessions via Skype while Arianne is abroad.
“They’re really going to miss each other,” Laurie said.
Edon and the first wave of semi-finalists compete Tuesday. The remaining 12 contestants, including comedian Jacob Williams of Chicago, compete Sept. 4.
Natasha Wasinski is a local free-lance writer.