AGT 15th Anniversary: Grace Vanderwaal Charms, Plus 14 More Acts

AMERICA'S GOT TALENT -- "AGT: 15th Anniversary Special" Episode 1510 -- Pictured: Grace Vanderwaal -- (Photo by: Trae Patton/NBC)
Pictured: Grace Vanderwaal — (Photo by: Trae Patton/NBC)

America’s Got Talent will celebrate 15 years of entertainment with a retrospective featuring some of the most viral acts over the years, including winners Kodi Lee, Shin Lim, Darci Lynne and Grace Vanderwaal, as well as AGT: The Champions winners V. Unbeatable and Season 13 performance troupe Zurcaroh. Terry Crews hosts along while Simon Cowell, Heidi Klum, Howie Mandel and Sofia Vergara sit on the judges panel.

Shy Grace Vanderwaal impresses the judges with her original song

In a new preview, viewers revisit the audition of shy 12 year old Grace Vanderwaal, who wowed the judges in 2016 with an original song. Howie was skeptical, but by the time she finished singing the charming “I Don’t Know My Name” he was sold, choosing her for his Golden Buzzer.

Grace would go on to win the season and the 1 million dollar prize. Now 16 years old, the singer-songwriter has released an album and two EPs, including the most recent Letters Vol. 1. Additionally, she starred in the Disney+ movie, Stargirl, based on the 2000 novel. 

In the clip, the judges recall their first impressions of Grace. Simon compares his first impression to when he first heard American Idol season 4 winner, Carrie Underwood. “It was just something about her when she came in.”

Watch Grace’s audition again. After, Howie shares how proud he was to have “discovered” her!

America’s Got Talent celebrates 15th anniversary

America’s Got Talent 15th anniversary special will highlight 15 memorable auditions. Check out the acts featured below. Notice, except for one act, they are all from the Simon Cowell era 2016-2020. I think if a 15 year old series looks back, it’s pointless to disregard the first 10 years? The special airs on NBC Tuesday Aug 4 at 8 pm.

The live shows kick off the following Tuesday, August 11, followed by an hour long results show on Wednesday August 12 at 8 pm ET PT. 

America’s Got Talent Celebrates 15 memorable Acts

  • Aaron Crow – Season 13 – In his audition, Aaron performed very dangerous tricks with swords. He was eventually eliminated in the semifinal.
  • Angelica Hale – Season 12 runner-up, Champions 1 finalist – She wowed the judges with a performance of Rise Up by Andra Day in her audition, eventually coming in second to ventriloquist Darci Lynne. She was a finalist in the inaugural season of Champions. 
  • Celine Tam – Season 12 – Kid singer from Hong Kong belted out Celine Dion in her audition. She was eliminated in the semi-finals.
  • Courtney Hadwin – Season 13 and Champions 1 – Teen singer Janis Joplins her way through rock classics. She was a Season 13 and Champions 1 finalist. Simon will keep pimping her, as he signed her to SYCO.
  • Darci Lynne – Season 12 – WINNER of season 12, 12 year old Darci captured hearts with her charming ventriloquists act.
  • Grace Vanderwaal – Season 11 – Howie’s Golden Buzzer went on to win Season 11 performing original songs every step of the way.
  • Kodi Lee – Season 14 – Pianist and singer is the reigning champ. His backstory as a blind and autistic musician inspired fans all over the world. 
  • Light Balance – Season 12 – Dance troupe that performs using light technology. In 2017, the group came in 3rd place.
  • Men with Pans – Season 12 – Gotta throw in a joke act for a little levity? They really should be called naked men with pans. 
  • Shin Lim – Season 13 and Champions 1 – Talented magician who specializes in close-up magic won both season 13 in 2018 and the inaugural Champions season. He currently headlines a successful Las Vegas act.
  • Special Head – Season 8 – The one and only non-Simon Cowell era act is a magician that competed way back in 2013. His schtick was levitating off a yoga rug.
  • Tape Face – Season 11 – The wonderfully inventive Tape Face does hilarious and creative mime with his mouth taped shut. Definitely worthy to revisit. He was a finalist in 2016, and returned to compete in the Champions season 1
  • Tyler Butler Figueroa – Season 14 and Champions 2 – Young violinist was a Golden Buzzer finalist in 2019, and a Top 5 finisher on Champions 2.
  • V. Unbeatable – Season 14 and Champions 2 – Dance troupe from India finished Top 5 in 2019, and then followed it with a Champions 2 win earlier this year. 
  • Zurcaroh – Season 13 – Acrobatic group earned a Golden Buzzer in 2018 and eventually came in 2nd place to Shin Lim.

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About mj santilli 34836 Articles
Founder and editor of, home of the awesomest fan community on the net. I love cheesy singing shows of all kinds, whether reality or scripted. I adore American Idol, but also love The Voice, Glee, X Factor and more!