It’s the third night of America’s Got Talent auditions in front of judges Howie Mandel, Mel B. Heidi Klum and Simon Cowell. Brand new host Tyra Banks presides over the madness. Join us tonight as we live blog every performance.
Tyra Banks opens the show, gushing about how much she LOVES being host. It reminds her of her salad days as a struggling model…or something.
Oscar Hernandez – Dancer – He was raised by his grandma, who was also a performer. His dad wanted him to play football, but it wasn’t his deal. Oh lord. He can’t be serious. He’s dancing badly to “Anaconda.” I give the big guy props for his very high kicks and ability to split. “Well we weren’t expecting that,” says Simon. “When you do those moves do they hurt your pom poms?” asks Howie. “That was amazing,” says Simon. Huh? The girls were impressed he could move like a Laker girl. But not really? – 4 yeses.
Elana & Sasha – Balance Act – Wife and husband duo are American and Ukrainian, respectively. When they first met, they had to use a translator app to communicate. Hubby balances his wife on his face. OK then. Elaina says they entered the show because of “free sandwiches.” She’s the comedian. She climbs to the top of a metal pole while he balances her at his waist. She climbs back up and he literally balances the pole on his forehead while she performs acrobatics at the top. Yup. Looks pretty dangerous. “You deserve two sandwiches!” exclaims Howie. Mel can’t believe how “chill” Elana is. She confesses to being afraid of heights. Simon calls Elena “nicely stupid,” which humanizes the act. Hm. – 4 yeses
Shemika Charles – Limbo Dancer – Mom and grandma were both limbo dancers. She grew up watching her mom perform, it where she learned to love limbo. First, she shows off how freaking bendy she is. Her mom plays assistant. So of course, the answer to the question “How low can you go” is pretty dang low. She can skoot underneath objects with objects in her mouth. The big trick is limboing under a big ass truck. Simon expected the act to be really boring, but was pleasantly surprised. Mel B was already familiar with her amazingly bendy ways–her daughter had showed her a video. – 4 yeses
Kechi – Singer – We previewed this performance over the weekend. Kechi was in a plane crash at 16 and was only one of two passengers who survived. The burns are all over her face and arms. And considering she’s wearing tights–probably all over her body. Kechi was coming back from a holiday trip with friends. She lost everybody. She was barely alive when they found her. She’s had more than 100 procedures. Good god–that’s unimaginable. Music got her through the ordeal. She sings “Thinking Out Loud” by Ed Sheeran. She has a nice voice. Solid interpretation. People in the audience are crying. Howie calls her “beautiful.” He says, “You blew me away.” Mel B. calls her “brave” and “inspiring.” Heidi loves her voice and energy. Simon is proud that the show gives people who wouldn’t otherwise, a platform. – 4 yeses
Big Benji – Singer – She loves Mr. Simon Cowell, with whom her husband gave permission to flirt. All she wants is to give Simon a big hug and kiss. The 73 year old claims she came to America (from somewhere in Asia?) to be a star. Howie is as handsome as her husband, she tells him (they’re both bald). “He pretend he is tough, but inside is juicy with love,” is how she describes Simon. OMG. “If you do well, you can have a snog,” he promises Benji. She’s terrible, of course, as she serenades Simon. So much off key warbling. Howie calls her adorable. But it’s no. “I would have said yes, but there you go,” said Simon. She’s led to the judges table to get her “juicy snog” from Simon. Howie suggests hubby kiss Heidi and he does. It’s a regular love fest here. NO
Joan – 82 year old. Also in love with Simon. “Do you go for older women?” She strips off her skirt and sings “You make me feel so young.” Mel B buzzes. Joan’s reaction: “Are you jealous?” She gets 3 yeses.
The Syncopations – Older women who…kick their legs in syncopation? Oh. They aren’t wearing underwear. It’s a senior citizen version of Basic Instinct. OK then. Their bits are covered with photos of Simon. So, OK. Old ladies love Simon.
Tony and Jordan – Magician – Tony was out on stage first. He’s 21 and French. His parents hate magic, he claims. Immediately he “magically” splits in two. Oh, it’s twins. A half naked girl appears behind a scrim and they “dress her.” Uhm. pretty sexist. The act moves fast and creates objects out of thin air, from behind the scrim to the stage. This is hard to describe. You just gotta watch the video. The act was done with a screen and light so it wasn’t exactly magic? But that sure was unexpected. The judges love it. – 4 yeses
In the Stairwell – Air Force Academy a cappella group – These guys are very very…white. There’s one bi-racial guy in the group and that’s it as far as diversity is concerned. They sing One Direction’s “Drag Me Down.” Not good enough to win the Sing-Off, but it’s decent. Howie buzzes them. Heh. Heidi is up on her feet. Howie thanks them for their service but, “It bored me.” Simon urges the crowd to boo. Mel B. thought it was full, fresh and new. “We do love a man in uniform,” says Heidi. She also thinks they’re talented. Simon didn’t like the choreography but he trots out the ole’ “People are really really going to like you.” line I’m Team Howie. Nothing special. 3 yeses.
The next two performers are really really nervous, according to their pre package
Wyatt Gray – Comedian – A valet parker, he’s wearing a 3 piece suit. I’m not sure what’s going on here? Oh, I guess he’s a comedian. His timing is completely screwed up. It could be nerves. Oof. He totally flopped. Embarrassing.
Daniel Ferguson – Impressionist – He’s sells advertising to radio stations in Ohio. He sings “Cake by the Ocean” like Goofy. The Disney character. Oh and also as other cartoon characters like Scooby and the guy from Family Guy. Also Simon Cowell. The cartoon he’s imitating is helpfully projected behind him, just in case we don’t get the joke. I got it…but I thought it was kind of lame. Mel gushes, “You nailed it!” Howie thought it was original and awesome. “I absolutely loved this act.” Simon says, “This guy lights up the room.” – 4 yeses
Pompeyo Family – Dog Act – It’s a husband, wife, kid and a pack of cute puppers. They have 18 dogs altogether and most of them come from shelters. The dogs are cute. They dance around, jump rope. Acrobatics! It’s a bit of a free for all, but charming. “That really made me smile,” says Mel. “Amazing” says Heidi. “I can see this is a reality show, and I’m serious,” says Simon. He wants all 18 dogs on stage at once. – 4 yeses
Dancing Pumpkin Man – He’s a dude wearing a pumpkin head. He wants to climb to the top of the “dance pantheon.” He claims to be married 16 years with two children and a dog named Calvin. He wants to spread the joy of the dance, he explains to “Sims.” This is pretty stupid, but oddly hilarious, as Dancing Pumpkin man jerks around the stage. Simon buzzes him immediately. “That was incredible…my tummy hurts so much,” says Mel B. “Brilliant.” Simon says, “It’s not.” Heidi’s not a fan either. Of course, Howie loved it. “I thought it was stupid.” Simon says no. Howie and Mel say yes. Heidi also says no. Mel begs, but to no avail. She marches on stage to stand next to Pumpkin Man. “I’m not leaving until someone changes their mind.” After Simon polls the audience, he changes his answer to yes. He figures his son would like it. – 3 yeses
Christian Guardino – Singer – Christian was born blind, but he “would not give up.” says mom. At 12 years old, he embarked on an experimental gene therapy, and regained some of his sight. He’s 16 years old. His school mates have no idea he’s auditioning. I thought he’d be an opera singer, being Italian and from Long Island and all–but surprisingly, he busts out a soulful performance of “Who’s Loving You.” He’s pretty good. His tone is a little thin, but he’s big voiced and enthusiastic. When the crowd and judges give him a standing ovation, Christian cries. “What just happened!” screams Mel. “You’re like a bright light,” she says. “I think you are incredible…an amazing gift,” says Heidi. “You were like a little mouse who turned into a lion…you are one of my favorite contestants this year,” says Simon. Christian is really crying now. AAAAAANNNND Howie presses the Golden Buzzer.