Grammy Award-Winning Singer Mandisa Passes Away at 47

Grammy Award-Winning Singer Mandisa Passes Away at 47

Grammy Award-winning artist Mandisa, who first gained prominence as a contestant on the fifth season of “American Idol,” passed away at age 47 on April 18.

“We can confirm that yesterday Mandisa was found in her home deceased,” a representative for the singer stated to PEOPLE. “At this time we do not know the cause of death or any further details. We ask for your prayers for her family and close knit circle of friends during this incredibly difficult time.”

Grammy Award-Winning Singer Mandisa Passes Away at 47

Originally from Citrus Heights, California, Mandisa pursued music studies in college before her 2005 audition for “American Idol.” Her compelling voice and charismatic presence caught national attention during the show’s 2006 season, where she reached the top 10, performing alongside notables such as Katharine McPhee and Chris Daughtry.

During her time on the show, Mandisa was lauded by judges Simon Cowell, Paula Abdul, and Randy Jackson for her renditions of classics by Chaka Khan and Stevie Wonder. Despite an early exit from the competition, she quickly moved beyond the setback.

Following “Idol,” Mandisa released her debut album, “True Beauty,” in 2007, which made history by topping the Top Christian Albums chart—a first for a new female artist in the chart’s then 27-year history. Over her career, Mandisa produced six albums, including the 2008 holiday album “It’s Christmas” and her 2017 album “Out of the Dark.”

Her music earned her several Grammy nominations, and she won the award in 2014. Her collaborations spanned a range of well-known artists such as TobyMac and Kirk Franklin, and she was consistently praised for her kindness and generosity.

Mandisa’s journey was also marked by personal struggles. Her 2022 memoir, “Out of the Dark: My Journey Through the Shadows to Find God’s Joy,” delved into

her battles with depression and anxiety triggered by a personal tragedy. “When she passed away, it shook the foundations underneath me. I sank into a deep pit of depression. I turned back to my old ways, which is food,” Mandisa shared with PEOPLE in 2017, detailing her subsequent weight gain and reclusive lifestyle.

During a particularly tough period, Mandisa admitted to grappling with suicidal thoughts. “I was so miserable; I felt so hopeless,” she explained. However, an intervention by close friends played a crucial role in addressing her mental health and beginning her path to recovery. “The darkness felt a little less dark,” she described in her memoir, recognizing the glimmer of hope that emerged.

Mandisa often praised the rich diversity within her circle of friends, attributing her personal growth to the varied backgrounds and experiences of the people she surrounded herself with. “During my life I’ve been drawn into friendships with all types of people — some very different from me,” Mandisa stated. Her life’s experiences and the support from her friends underscored the importance of community and mutual support through challenging times.

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