America’s Got Talent 2023 Recap: Qualifiers 4 (Live Blog)

America's Got Talent 2023 - Chibi Unity
Pictured: Chibi Unity — (Photo by:Chris Haston/NBC)

America’s Got Talent 2023 Recap: Qualifiers 4 Performances

It’s the FOURTH week of America’s Got Talent LIVE qualifiers. Eleven more acts will compete for a spot in the finale. After America’s vote, only TWO acts will advance to the last show, revealed on Wednesday’s results show.

To vote for your favorite act, download the official America’s Got Talent phone app at the Apple store and Google Play, and/or vote at All voting methods CLOSE Wednesday 7 am ET.

Simon Cowell, Howie Mandel, Heidi Klum and Sofia Vergara sit on the panel, while Terry Crews hosts. 

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Zion Clark – Fitness/acrobat

Zion, born without legs, spent his childhood in foster care. Despite his disability, he has pushed to his physical limits. As he performs, he narrates an uplifting and inspiring story. “I know I’m going to overcome every obstacle in my life,” he says, before launching into a challenging physical obstacle course. He climbs to the top of a platform where he sits behind a drum kit and plays. And that’s the end. Zion is more of an inspirational speaker than an entertainer. He could do the church/charity/school circuit with that act and do really well.

Heidi says, “You are a huge force of positivity and strength. I love your smile. America you have to vote.” Howie says, “Everyone in the world needs to watch you and be inspired by you. You are truly a treasure.” Sofia calls him “remarkable.” Simon says, “I loved your first audition. I think you just booked yourself a place in the final.” Really? Declaring that before the remaining acts perform? Apparently, his audition video went mega viral.

Puppet Simon & the Cowbells

So Puppet Simon is a diva, skipping rehearsals, and making the cowbells stage a walk out…or something. Puppet Simon opens the show with the charming “You’ll be Back” from the Broadway musical, Hamilton. Oh. Now there is a Sofia puppet and she sings too. This act is a waste of time. Sofia and Simon buzzed each other. But the puppets duet! The cowbells never show up.

Simon and Sofia argue over which puppet was better. Heidi says, “I have mixed feelings about this, since I never showed up.” Howie, Mr. Red Buzzer, thinks buzzing is not appropriate at this time.

Roland Abante – Singer

After Roland’s audition on AGT went viral, Filipinos came together to help put a roof over his head. He’s covering “I Will Always Love You” by Dolly Parton and dedicating it to the people of the Philippines. Hm, I don’t remember him sounding hoarse last time. Maybe he’s been practicing too hard, or isn’t feeling well. Oh, that key change was rough. He’s obviously having vocal issues tonight. However, his phrasing and ad libs are creative. Too bad he sounded so rough.

Sofia says, “They are going crazy for you. People love you. Good job tonight.” Simon says he didn’t like it, but he “loved it.” Simon indicates that he is responding to his inspiring story. Howie says, “The perfect song, the perfect voice, I think you just made everyone love you.” Heidi calls it one of her favorites of the night. She wishes she had a golden buzzer to push him into the finale.

Mariandrea – Kid dancer

It’s Mariandrea’s 15th birthday today. The young dancer is from Mexico and she LOVES shocking people. She combines contortionism with contemporary dance. The style allows her to craft routines that are somewhat sinister and shocking. She’s only a teen now, but has a ton of potential. She hints that she creates her own choreography.

Simon wanted her to be even MORE scary, like her audition. Howie and Heidi thought it was more than scary enough. “She looked possessed enough…better than your audition,” says Sofia, who followed up her critique with a few words in Spanish. Howie calls it the scariest birthday party for a 15 year old.

Kylie Frey – Singer-songwriter

After her AGT audition, Reba sent her a congratulatory Tweet. This week, she’ll be singing another original. Howie criticized her song last time. She wants to prove him wrong. Her hair is darker and longer. She almost looks like a different person! This time, her song has a fast tempo with crowd pleasing sing-along elements. However, her vocal is thin and shouty at times. The performance would work better in a venue rather than on TV. Fun Fact: She and Drake Milligan, who is performing on this week’s results show are friends.

Howie thought this week’s song was better. Howie notes that she was out of breath. He’s correct. Heidi compliments her stage presence. “You look very hot and very comfortable up there.” Sofia compliments her energy, but adds, “there was something happening with her voice.” Simon says, “You got a great personality. I’m glad that you brought the energy.” But he calls the performance a “manic mess” with out of tune notes. It’s true. Her nervous energy seemed to interfere.

Chibi Unity – Dance group – Group Golden Buzzer

The group is from Japan and received the group golden buzzer. “We are the best dance crew in Japan,” they boast. “We came here to win.” They are very good, with a clever use of props alongside inventive choreography.

Heidi says, “You did not disappoint. You gave us so many special moments.” Sofia says, “I could watch you guys perform for hours. It’s surprising, sexy, artsy.” Simon says, “I’m so happy for all of you. I think the Mayyas (last season’s winners) has made a different to the way we see dancers.” He calls them “stylish.” Howie says, “By far, the best act of the night.”

Freedom Singers – Choir

The group is made up of unhoused or formerly unhoused people. They sing “Paradise” by Phil Collins, which is apt. The female lead singer has a powerful voice. I’m not sold on some of these harmonies, though. But once they come together as a group, they sound beautiful. Still, groups like this, made up of non-professionals, are usually mediocre. The Freedom Singers are solid.

Sofia says, “I loved you tonight. That was perfection. I think America is going to love you tonight.” Simon calls it a “massive” step up from their audition. He calls the female singer’s voice “outstanding.” Howie says, “Some of the talent in America is unhoused….we realize you are us. This is so relatable.” He calls them “heroes.” Heidi calls it another favorite moment.

Orlando Leyba – Comic

Orlando had to follow Mzansi Youth Choir for his audition. It was nerve wracking. He told a story last time, but Orlando promises a bunch of jokes this time. They are mostly about his wife. The two have been together 20 years. The storytelling from last time worked better, but the judges disagree.

Howie says, “You’re a smart man. You’re a natural. I love your plan.” He thought the non stop jokes were a smart move. Simon thinks the comedians have the hardest time, “You are naturally funny. Your material was great.” He thanks him for being on the show. In other words, This is the end, good luck! Heidi can see him filling seats in Las Vegas. Sofia calls him “adorable.” Howie teases Sofia, “You love relationship comedy!”

Anna Deguzman – Magician

The magic Anna does is called “cardistry” which involves manipulating cards. She is the first female close up magician to make it onto the live shows. The entire panel joins Anna on stage. When Simon tries to throw Anna off by giving her the wrong card. You can see the panic on her face. Mean. Card magic can be boring, but her presentation is artistic and surpring. The big trick! The cake she presents at the end of the bit echoes the cards the judges picked…and inside the cake is a card Howie autographed! Great hook!

Howie says, “I love your presentation.” Heidi says, “We need more female magicians! It’s amazing how you did this.” She notes how nervous Anna was. Sofia says, “I think you have a big career ahead of you.” Simon loves her personality. “You deserve this shot.”

D’Corey Johnson – Kid singer

D’Corey began singing at his mom’s hair salon. At his audition, Simon did that thing where he asks the artist to sing again, but without the backing track. He sings “Wishing on a Star” by Rose Royce. It’s an unexpected choice for an 11 year old. It’s an oldie, but not a super popular one (his mom probably chose it). The song keeps him singing in his higher register and he sounds slightly flat. Not a great song choice for him. The song never takes off. D’Corey aimed to not sing over-the-top, but he pulled back too much.

Heidi says, “You’ve really improved from last time. I loved it.” Sofia says, “This was sexy. You felt very comfortable singing this.” Uhm. He’s 11 Sofia. Simon calls him “adorable.” He likes that D’Corey controlled the song and that he knows who he wants to be as an artist. Howie believes he raised the bar. D’Corey shares that he dedicated the song to his chronically ill sister who is in the audience.

Shadow Ace – Shadow puppet

The act garnered over 213 million views on Youtube. It’s a shadow puppet act, but rather than being sentimental as these acts usually are, it’s funny and a little rude. This time a pineapple topped dancer hula hoops her way through the Macarena and then “I Will Survive.” He loves depicting damsels in distress, which is off putting. Eventually, he comes out from behind the screen as if he’s the star. It’s distracting. His fingers are pretty fast. But so what. An entire show of “puppets” would not be entertaining.

Simon says, “What a way to finish! It was even better than the first time we saw you.” Sofia says, “I love it. You are so creative. You could actually win.” Heidi calls it simple and creative. Howie thinks it’s better than the original audition. No? He predicts Shadow Ace will advance to the finals.

About mj santilli 34983 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!