Host of “America’s Got Talent” (AGT) Terry Crews announced at the top of Monday’s first live performance show of season 15 that this season’s winner will be awarded $1 million and a headline show in Las Vegas.
The show opted to broadcast live from a sound stage on the Universal Studios backlot, foregoing their typical live location at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood. Host Terry Crews moderated the night with AGT judges – Howie Mandel, Heidi Klum, Sofia Vergara, and “The Voice” coach and season one “American Idol” winner Kelly Clarkson who was filling-in for Simon Cowell at their usual judges table. Simon Cowell was absent due to a back injury he suffered near his home while riding an electric bike.
In response to taking her good friend Simon’s place, Kelly said she “waited years for this!” Kelly also added that she loves the show. The stage was also equipped with a live virtual audience who were projected on a large screen behind the judges. This somewhat helped with the ambiance of applause where needed.
Due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, most of the acts did not join them in the sound stage to perform. Instead some of the various acts performed throughout various locations on the lot outside. Out of the eleven acts that performed, only five would continue on to compete in next week’s live show. The first act of Tuesday night’s performance live show was “Pork Chop Revue.”
Howie reacted that “the moves were stunning.” Then criticized that it was like a “lethargic dog act.” Heidi said she was missing the “boos” reaction from the audience. But, she “loved it” and Sofia also said she loved it. Kelly said she liked that the pigs didn’t do everything that they were supposed to do because it shows their personalities and also shows that they are too hard on them.
The next act was 13-year-old Feng E. who performed via satellite from his home in Taiwan. His love for ukulele playing started due to his love for legos after his dad made a deal with him to play legos with him for every minute he played the ukulele. Howie told Feng E. that he is the Jimmy Hendrix of the ukulele, and he just blew him away. Heidi loved his vibe, “so cool” she told Feng E. Sofia told him that he looks like a star up there. Sofia hates the ukulele, but loves how he plays. She wants to hear him play again. Kelly told Feng E that he’s insanely gifted and it was so “rock-n-roll.” She compared him to Ed Sheeran.
Singer Shaquira McGrath was the next act. She performed the Country song “What Hurts the Most” by Rascal Flatts on stage in front of the judges. Sofia called it “breath-taking” and she puts her soul into every song, “it’s like magic. Kelly said that’s a hard song to sing. She complimented her beautiful and “powerful voice.” Howie said “the first one blew me away” compared to all three performances. Heidi was upset at Howie’s comments and said Shaquira’s voice is larger than life and if the audience was able, they’d give her a standing ovation. So, she gave her one instead.
Kid salsa dancers Simon and Maria performed on the lot in front of a Mel’s Diner set. Kelly reacted how cool it is that they got to use the lot and thought they were amazing. Howie said they’re doing exactly what needs to be done on the show which is improving with each performance. Heidi said they “sparkle.” Sofia told them “my favorite Colombians. I’m so proud of you!” She added, they have an “unbelievable future.” Host Terry Crews asked Maria and Simon how their lives have changed. Maria said a lot more people have noticed them since their AGT auditions.
Contortionist act, Frenchie Babyy said when he started dancing, he got kicked out of his house. During his audition, Simon Cowell called his mom to tell her Frenchie made it through on the show. Since then, Frenchie Baby has reconnected with his three sisters. Heidi reacted that it’s one of those things that’s hard to watch, but hard to look away and he found his niche with the body paint. Sofia said it was “unbelievable” and can imagine him doing that for a living. “It’s nerve wracking but also super entertaining.” Kelly loved his song selection and has never seen anyone on the planet do what he does. Howie said this show brings the family together and thinks he’ll be one of the five acts to go through.
Dare devils father and daughter Bello & Annaliese Nock who have both competed on AGT separately are competing together this season. During their rehearsal the day before the live show, Bello injured his back. He asked Annaliese to perform by herself and had to come-up with a new routine in less than 24 hours. Her brother Pete helped-out by being the counterbalance in a high rotating wheel routine. At the end of the dangerous act which included fire and Annaliese stumbling while blindfold, Annaliese became emotional and hugged her dad Bello.
Kelly said that act was “terrifying.” Heidi told them anything with them is “larger than life” and “it’s always spectacular.” Sofia said she can’t even watch her son cut an onion and can’t believe that Bello can watch Annaliese. Howie joked that they should call protective child services on Bello!
The next act was Sofia Vergara’s first Gold Buzzer act, 10-year-old, soon to be eleven, Roberta Battaglia after singing Lady Gaga’s “Shallow” song. Sofia was thrilled with Roberta’s live performance and said she wants her to win and holds a special place in her heart. Kelly told Roberta that she’s “incredible” and can’t wait to see what she does with the rest of her life. Kelly urged America to vote for her. Roberta was visibly star-struck by Kelly Clarkson. Howie said he thinks she has a good chance of winning the show. Heidi said Roberta is incredible and hopes that America sees her talent and votes for her.
Comedian Michael Yo came down with Covid-19 after his AGT audition and was rushed to the hospital after experiencing a fever and difficulty breathing. Kelly said she loves comedians and knew him previously and it’s nice to see this side of him. Howie said “this is the hardest especially now with a virtual audience…you delivered. I’m proud of you.” Heidi said her favorite part was his face because he looks like the emoji with the hearts in the eyes. Sofia said she enjoyed it and this time was better than the last time. She noted people don’t understand how hard it is for a comedian to make it this far on the show.
Twin sister singing group “Double Dragon” performed a mixed rendition of “Bang, Bang” by Jessie J. with Spanish lyrics mixed-in “Taki Taki” mashup. Howie said he sees them as a sitcom and loves them. Heidi reacted that she loves them too and wants to be their triplet. Sofia said the only one that could be their triplet would be her. She said they deserve a reality show and they’re amazing. Their voices are fantastic. Kelly said she loves the energy and liked them singing in Spanish even more.
Terry Crews warned the audience to NOT try anything that the next act – Brett Loudermilk does at home.
Danger act Brett Loudermilk said he decided to move to Las Vegas after his successful AGT audition. But, then CoronaVirus happened and there was no one to perform for. Brett’s act was a very engaging and funny card stunt that involved Heidi Klum and Sofia Vergara.
Howie told Brett that this time was “even greater” and he looked more in control than last time. Kelly was in awe and wanted to know how the signed card got in his throat. She said she’d love to see a whole show of his. Sofia thought it was “spectacular” and what is he going to do when she’s not available.
Sofia reacted “spectacular” and he deserves this more than anyone. Heidi loved the Stevie Wonder song mixed with his story and voice. “I can feel all the pain you’ve gone through” She stated that the words couldn’t be more perfect because they need more love and less hate. Kelly loved his performance and his story is an incredible testimony. She said his tone “is really cool.” Howie said Archie doesn’t sing to them, he preaches to them. Howie thanked him that Archie decided to share the first of his time of his freedom on the AGT stage.
Out of the eleven acts that performed on Tuesday’s Live Show, only five of those will continue to next week’s live show. The acts that came in fourth, fifth and sixth place were in danger of going home. Those acts were: Brett Loudermilk, Feng E, Double Dragon. The Dunkin’ Save vote was used to Save one act. All acts surviving the eliminations will continue to the Semi Finals.
Archie Williams, Michael Yo, Bello & Annaliese Nock were called forward to reveal the first act going into the Semi Finals. That act was Archie Williams. Kelly advised Archie to continue to tell stories. That’s something that he can not, not do. “Right now more than ever we need hope right now. ” She said it’s an honor to get to be able to see Archie honor his dream.
In 2014, Matt Franco was the first magician to win AGT. He came back to perform. Heidi and Kelly were part of the card trick that he performed.
All the acts shared their very first performances through old videos and photos. Michael Yo said to get on AGT, all the struggle, that’s what it’s all about.
Frenchie Babyy, Shaquira McGrath were both called to “step forward.” Shaquira McGrath moved forward to the Semi Finals. Heidi, her biggest cheerleader, advised Shaquira to “keep doing you.”
Roberta Battaglia, Pork Chop Revue, Simon and Maria were the next three acts called forward. The next act going into the Semi Finals was revealed to be Roberta Battaglia. She was in tears and thanked everyone. Sophia was so excited and said she was so nervous the day she hit the Golden Buzzer and realized that it was “the right thing.”
Kodi Lee returned to AGT to perform a song while playing the piano.
The Dunkin’ Save vote was revealed to be danger act Brett Loudermilk. Howie reacted that he was “incredibility entertaining and he lives in the moment. “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” Sofia, who’s part of his act, said “I’m nervous! I don’t know how we’re going to do this!”
The fate of the last two acts Feng E and Double Dragon was up to the judges to decide. Heidi said it was hard because she truly loves both acts. She loves Double Dragon because they have so much energy and wants to be part of their group. She picked Double Dragon. Sofia said Feng E did an amazing job. But, she has a soft spot for Double Dragon and voted for them. Kelly said there is no comparison between the two acts and voted for Feng E. Howie had the final vote. He voted for Double Dragon who went through on that vote!
NEXT WEEK: Voices of Our City Choir, Spyros Bros, Kelvin Dukes, Alexis Brownley, Bad Salsa, Daneliya Tuleshova, BONAVEGA, Kameron Ross, The Shape, Vincent Marcus, and Jonathan Goodwin will all perform.