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(The usual disclosure: As you know, we are a site devoted to opinion, inspiration, civility, and tolerance. So, why this weekly ritual with AGT? Well, first, it’s our guilty pleasure [life can’t always be so serious], and second, it fits right into one of our pillars: inspiration. America’s Got Talent features folks who are going for it in a very real sense. They are living their dream, come what may [the big red “X”?]. Doesn’t matter who you are, what you look like, or where you come from. On stage, you’re all equal under the lights. That’s pretty great to me.)
Welcome to the July 5, 2011, America’s Got Talent live blog! Tonight will be three hours of performances — more auditions and the race for the top 48!
Sharon Osbourne, Howie Mandel, Piers Morgan, and Nick Cannon have a busy night ahead. Luckily, the rest of us can sit in the comfort of our own home and judge for ourselves.
Let’s get started!
The opening “recap” of last week was mixed with cheers and groans, and a little of the frenetic.
The roll call took us from New York to Houston, Atlanta to Los Angeles. Then, there was Minneapolis and Seattle. That’s right, folks…we’ve seen the country through talent. Nice, right? Actually, come to think of it, I’d really like to see those cities.
But after the blog.
The first act was three small singers who want to sing together “forever.” I really hope they live that dream…especially considering how many groups of buddies break up over creative differences. However, I doubt Avery and the Calico Hearts are old enough to have creative differences yet. Maybe around age 14 or so. You have to hand it to ’em, they had a decent sound. Although, I think I’d prefer an Avery and the Calico Hearts original to a Justin Bieber tune…but hey, I’m not their future (and inevitable) manager. That’s not up to me. Sharon was complimentary. Piers was…honest. And booed. But in the end, Howie and Piers moved ’em through. Honestly? Piers didn’t look too sad about that. Avery and the Calico Hearts are taking the act to Las Vegas.
Alright, time for a snack. That commercial with the tarantula that pops up on the phone is on…y’know, that Samsung / AT&T commercial? Ugh…
Alright, we’re back to a hopefully spider-free segment. Actually, we came back to an A-Team homage. I guess that’s cool in an ’80s homage kind of way.
Anyway, the next act was Kevin Shelley, a board-breaker. He uses his head…but he clearly doesn’t use his head. Nick Cannon came out to assist Kevin has he broke board after board. One wonders how Kevin Shelley remembers who he is after smashing so many boards on his head. For his next trick, Kevin Shelley cleans the stage of his own blood. Even the medic back stage said, “It’s not right!” She’s right. However, Shelley’s moving on to break more things with his body in Vegas.
Dezmond Meeks played a mean piano and sang a great rendition of Georgia On My Mind, and now he has Vegas on his mind.
Thomas John the Juggler did some amazing things with ping-pong balls and a xylophone. Pack the…balls…to Vegas.
4Play belted it out on stage…and got 4tix to Vegas.
Welcome back! Howie was busy messing with Piers.
Meantime, J. Chris Newberg — comedian and musician — got a few laughs…and a buzz from Piers (shocking). I have to say, I thought he was really funny. Luckily, Howie did too. Oh, and by the way, Sharon put him through. Yes! Don’t worry. J. Chris Newberg got in his parting shot to Piers. Yes x 2!
James David Pitts (King Diamond) brought his own brand of song to the stage. It didn’t really go over so well. That is, until Nick Cannon came on stage and turned it into a duet. Still a no-go. But kind of cool.
Chicago’s Ultimate Tumblers, a group designed to teach kids to love themselves, was up after the break. Their coach, Orpheus, was incredibly passionate. The tumbling was incredible…sky high! After a little accident (okay…a big collision), they were back on track. Overcoming adversity? I’ll say so. Let’s hear it for Chicago’s Ultimate Tumblers. They sure earned Piers’s respect. And America’s. Piers liked the “raw” of their show, and I agree. The judges sent the Ultimate Tumblers tumbling to Vegas.
I love it when dreams come true. Absolutely love it.
The next contestant showed up in a robe. Uh oh. His name? Manchego. For a “research editor” he was quite an extrovert. It’s always the quiet ones, right? His underwear quick change act was…different. And, in the studio, horrifying. Manchego left with not a yes in sight, then the brooms swept his undies away.
The buzzers continued with Morton Hyson…a singer who sang, not so much words, but syllables. A balloon artist saw his dreams popped next. As for the rest in the segment? Well, I’m not going to bother with the finger cramp. But still, you have to hand it to them — they tried.
The final segment featured an interesting duo. Meet Me at Fairfax and Third was a mix of piano, song, and some kind of chair acrobatics. I’m not kidding. Really. I have to say, it was quite impressive and deliciously bizarre. I can’t describe it. Try to find it on YouTube. “Horribly good” was how Piers described Meet Me at Fairfax and Third. Is there at Fairfax and Third in Las Vegas? There is now. I absolutely love it.
So long America’s Got Talent Episode 10 and the AGT Season 6 auditions.
Welcome to Las Vegas and episode 11!
It all comes down to this. There have been a lot of laughs, groans, and tears, but now we’re really getting down to it. How do we narrow all of this down?
Let’s find out on Vegas week.
The teaser seems pretty intense. I sense some broken bones in the future. Not a great thought, but what else can we expect when people push it to the limit? Leave it all on the stage, people.
The judges have to narrow it down to the final 48. Not an easy task. Especially when a million bucks are on the line. Remember Jackie Evancho? Michael Grimm? Well, new dreamers are coming up and new decisions have to be made.
The judges appeared on stage in front of the acts in a goofy spotlight-stage walk. But their message was serious enough — this is the biggest performance of their lives.
Various acts were asked to stand up to hear their fate. We will have to wait until after commercial.
We’re back. Ten acts just learned their fate — they are moving straight through to the Hollywood live show. Lys Agnes, Professor Splash, The Rhinestone Ropers, The Fearless Flores Family, Melissa Villasenor, and Captain Stabtuggo, Team Illuminate, and Miami All-Stars are among the elite.
As for the rest? Some perform as the judges’ favorites. Some wait in the wings as stand-by. Good luck, everyone!
The “Danger” category was up first (yikes!). I’ll probably not watch this whole segment…or, I’ll watch some of it through my fingers. One guy needs fire safety gel. Fire safety gel? Kevin Shelley, the board breaker had to follow the fire act. He brought his own fire to the stage, breaking flaming boards, standing on blades, and generally making me uncomfortable. Good act, even if all the concrete didn’t break. The Yellow Design Stunt Team came up next with their bikes. Frank Miles, the stun-gun juggler performed last. He fell on top of coolers — one of which had a knife in it. Hard to watch? Yes. Hard to watch. Very hard to watch. I think Sharon felt it was too much.
Danger category, indeed.
The vocal groups were up next. Mona Lisa and 4Play competed for the next step. 4Play had a few nerves, to say the least. But don’t feel bad, 4Play. Everyone, and I mean everyone, gets nerves…and they aren’t performing in front of millions and millions. Don’t let this one setback set you back.
The acrobats came to the stage. Two pole dancers? Yes…two pole dancers — Steve Retchless and Soleil. Oh, and also jump rope and aerials.
There was a lot of grace in this category. But they can’t all tumble back to Hollywood.
The magicians appeared on stage after the break. This is always a tough category. Fantastic Fig and Newton came back with his card tricks. As dazzling as the try-outs? No. But still great. Scott Alexander came back with another illusion to dazzle and amaze (and it did). Michael Turco came on strong with multiple tricks, even though a door on one of the tricks didn’t go as planned.
The animal acts came up after, with Jesse the Jack Russell leading off. But then Echo the Parrot and Vegas Birds had their “say.” Good? I’m not sure. I’m not the judge. Oh, and I’m no bird.
Classical singers brought their acts on stage next. Tough tough tough competition. Necessary Diva belted it out for the judges — strong voice, strong presence. Landau Eugene Murphy Jr. was up next. I love this guy. I love his voice. From the car wash to Vegas. I just smile whenever I hear him. I’m sure that wherever Sinatra is, he’s smiling, too. Cindy Chang blew ’em away at her first audition. Tonight? She was nervous. She wanted to, literally, reach for the unreachable star. She reached high. Maybe too high. She’s fantastic, but unfortunately, she’s going home. The most disappointed with that news? Landau Eugene Murphy Jr. This guys entire heart and soul are in this competition.
The bands? They made their stands. A lot of talent here, including The BGP — the family band. The Fiddleheads, who really want to do this for a living, had their last chance. They have a great sound. Last? PopLyfe. This was the group whose singer said she refused to leave her friends behind on the road to fame. I really like this band. I think they have incredible potential. All of them. Together.
The dance acts are now front and center — there was an injury with Fatally Unique dance team. Let’s hope she’s alright. Then, another dance team suffered a sprained ankle (Lucia) with one of their dancers, but she sucked it up and took it to the next level. Snap Boogie, a street performer, brought his talents to Vegas with more fluid movement. He has a great act. The last act? Fatally Unique again, with their injured dancer. I have to give them a ton of credit for their swift recovery.
The female singers came out next. Dani Shay (the Justin Bieber look-alike) did an original song called “Superheroes.” Risky? Sure. Worth it? Sure. Even though it ended in a pause and a stumble. Try it, even if it ends in tears. Someday, it will all be worth it. Dani Shay got another chance, but with someone else’s material. I can’t wait to hear it.
The comedians were back to perform in front of an empty theater. I can’t even imagine. J. Chris Newberg was back with his guitar and his quippy songs. I still like him. I still like his edge. Geechy Guy brought his crazy, suit-sweating act out for the judges. I absolutely love him.
Dani Shay? Coming back with “Trouble.” Only a few lines, but still a great voice.
And the great Criss Angel Orville Redenbacher commercial signals snack time!
The novelty acts showed up with glitter, ping-pong paddles, and gnomes. Those Funny Little People lumbered on to stage and put on, what I thought, was a clever act. I donno. It just makes me smile. Although, Piers certainly didn’t smile when Those Funny Little People came down for a picture with him. Ha! Tim Ford the Kinetic King brought out a wild kinetic…thing…and it was really amazing. And time intensive! He certainly seems to be having fun with his life. Is there anything better? I’d bet Tim Ford the Kinetic King would say “no.” But he’d say it with magnets and popsicle sticks.
The male singers were the last to perform. This is a pretty stacked category. Ryan Andreas was a standout in the auditions, and now he’s in Vegas. He has such an incredible voice and a tremendous piano talent. The last? Dezmond Meeks. He was great in L.A. Now in Vegas? Still big stakes. Still great.
Who will it be? Who will move on?
After commercial, the judges faced their snapshots of the performers — who would move on and whose journey would end?
Geechy Guy and J. Chris Newberg are moving on. Yes! Scott Alexander is also going to Hollywood. Fantastic Fig was a no (darn!). PopLyfe and The Fiddleheads are also moving on. Those Funny Little People (much to Piers’s dismay) and The Kinetic King are also moving on. Mona Lisa will be singing in Hollywood. Miami All-Stars are moving on as is Dezmond Meeks. Steve Retchless is on to Hollywood, as is Landau Eugene Murphy Jr. (yay!). And as for Dani Shay? Well, she’s on to Hollywood (there’s the break the of a lifetime!). There are more. Check it out on the web!
And tomorrow? Well, tomorrow’s America’s Got Talent is for the standbys.
Join us here at Nobody’s View!
See you then.