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Grace VanderWaal in Stargirl

When you invite a singer/songwriter like 16-year-old Grace VanderWaal on board to the musically-infused movie Stargirl, it would seem like a missed opportunity if she didn’t get to put her name on her own original song from the movie. VanderWaal does grace the end credits of the coming-of-age story with the new tune “Today and Tomorrow” – but as it turns out, the America’s Got Talent winner wasn’t always signed on to write a song for the recent Disney+ release.

When CinemaBlend spoke to Grace VanderWaal, she told us that she didn’t have much of a say on what songs she’d be singing in Stargirl itself. She was over the moon to sing her own renditions of The Beach Boys’ “Be True To Your School” and The GoGo’s “We Got The Beat.” Her latest original song, “Today and Tomorrow,” came about organically. In her words:

I wasn’t even really thinking about anything, but once I started singing through the lyrics and it started coming together more and more like Stargirl. So I sent it over to Julia Hart, the director, just to see if she wanted to do anything with it, but no pressure. Do whatever you want to do. So that’s why it kind of got added to the end of the movie. It was a very last minute decision I feel like.

And for a “last minute” addition to Stargirl, “Today and Tomorrow” is a particularly beautiful track. Listen to it below:

Grace VanderWaal’s new tune is a romantic one that encompasses the feeling of falling in love that expresses a bit of Stargirl and Graham Verchere’s Leo Borlock’s own feelings about one another. Although the story is more about coming into your own in your teen years, Grace’s song certainly captures the essence of young love.

When Grace VanderWaal auditioned for America’s Got Talent back when she was twelve, she utilized her ukulele to sing an original song called “I Don’t Know My Name.” It led to the young talent winning the 11th season and propelling into stardom in the pop arena. The artist’s music has since moved out of purely ukulele sounds, but since it’s Stargirl’s instrument of choice, she went back to basics.

It’s a great addition to Stargirl and the soundtrack itself. The movie based on the bestselling YA novel by Jerry Spinelli is about a teen boy named Leo as he becomes intrigued by an offbeat student who goes by Stargirl. Grace VanderWaal’s character is always singing songs on her uke, and it starts to attract attention from the high school and challenge her individuality.

Stargirl joins Disney+’s increasing original options following the release of the live-action Lady and the Tramp, Noelle, Togo and Timmy Failure: Mistakes Were Made. The streaming platform also recently released Frozen II early and plans to add Pixar’s Onward in April. You can stream Stargirl on Disney+ now.

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