Tonight, 7/10/12, was the second AGT Quarterfinal.
Sorry we weren’t exactly “live,” but we’re here now.
And isn’t that what matters?
Sharon Osbourne, Howard Stern, Howie Mandel, and Nick Cannon…and the rest of us…saw the next 12 act perform. Who will move on? America decides.
And, fortunately, they usually get it right.
[We here at Nobody’s View have a soft spot for America’s Got Talent. Why? Well, contestants on the show are our kind of folks. Just regular people like you and me who get to live their dream. Getting their moment in the sun. People doing what they feel they were born to do. Hard to argue with that! And, judging by the thousands of you who join me here each season, well, I think you agree! Welcome to the LIVE Nobody’s View America’s Got Talent 2012 blog.]
So, things have been hectic. Weird. But fortunately, we can always count on good ol’ AGT to bring us back to reality. Nice. We need more things like that in life, don’t’ we?
I think so.
Last week, 4 great acts went through. Hopefully, we see the same this week.
Tonight? LionDanceMe, Turf, The All Ways, Hawley Magic, Lisa Clark Dancers, Aurora Light Painters, Danielle Stallings, Donovan & Rebecca, Big Barry, Tom Cotter, Ben Blaque, and Tim Hockenberry performed.
The judges gave their obligatory “pressure is on” speech, Nick wore a shirt with a bizarre print, trademarked hand signals were made, and we were on our way with the second America’s Got Talent quarterfinals from Jersey.
First up? LionDanceMe. Martial arts dance studio. This is a unique group, and they always bring an interesting act. In their preview, they said they may have pushed it too far. Did they? The effect was great, but was it enough to bring votes? They didn’t fall tonight, and that was big, because it’s so dangerous. Stern said that America may get bored with the act…do you agree? Is it too similar week after week? Sharon suggested some martial arts along with the dance. Howie made it unanimous, and used the word “trouble.”
Now, so far, no one has said that my life dreams were in “trouble,” but I suppose that would be an interesting conversation.
Oh, hey…did you see? You can now sign up for Season 8. My regular readers know I want to get on the show and play my throat. They also know I will never do that, so…y’know…
Anyway, next up? Turf. Great dance act. Dancing contortionist. He’s a one-man act with incredible talent. But when you’re only a one-person show, there’s nowhere to hide. This guy’s incredible. It’s like watching a rubber band dance. I find myself thinking (and saying) “ouch!” Apparently he now lives in Vegas, and I’m sure his act is a hit on the streets with all the tourists. It’s certainly something that gets attention.
I wonder if I could make a living doing street-writing. Just sitting there with a computer and writing a novel while people look on. How exciting would that be? Imagine that! Watching me furrow my brow and sip tea on the street while people flip quarters at my computer screen.
No? No. Stick with Turf. While he and I both have dreams, he’s infinitely more interesting in a crowd.
Next was The All Ways. Rock band. Austin, the lead singer, said that the name came from “nothing.” Nice. Maybe I’ll write a book and name it after nothing, just to throw readers for a loop. Then again, maybe I won’t. These guys have a retro feel to them. Maybe it’s the drummer’s hair. They certainly have energy. Howie said he wanted to see “strictly rock.” Stern seemed to agree, saying they have to pick a style…that he didn’t want to be up there with them tonight. And then Sharon…the rock expert. She wasn’t crazy about the song and scream, but she said she could feel their passion. That’s an interesting compliment.
Is it one you’d like to hear?
Illusionists Hawley Magic came up after the break. They say they’re living in a basement trying to make ends meet. Just knowing that raises them up in my book a few notches. Why? Because sometimes, that’s what it takes. Tonight is apparently a very dangerous act. An act Hawley Magic was warned about. But they did it. He balanced her on a sword. Then spun her around until it appeared she was pierced. And then, she wasn’t. It was an interesting illusion. I agree with Howard that it was a strong visual. Sharon said the appearance was too “old school” and not modern enough. But then again, whatever calls you. You have to live it the way you feel it, or else it’s not really genuine.
That goes for all of us, by the way.
Up next? The Lisa Clark Dancers. Their interest is their variety. They do a lot of styles in an unexpected way. Jazz, contemporary, and tap all at once. I can’t even do one of those. I have to say, I enjoy the classic, understated tone of their act. Howie X-ed them, but I can’t say as I agree with that. There’s so much in this world that’s pure loud noise. Why is classy suddenly out in our age? I mean, they didn’t blow me away, but still…why does everything need edge? I think Stern nailed it, though…the competition is too stiff this year.
Still, maybe I’ll listen to some old-school classics today. I’m inspired.
Oh, and I like how the dancers stood up for their choreographer. We all have mentors…and we should stand up for them.
Now, an interesting little act. Aurora Light Painters. They’re new. They’re different. This seems like a group of folks I’d like to have dinner with. Definitely. But what did you think of the act? The audience and the judges were lukewarm on it. But what I like about this act is they seem like a commune of creative folks. I mean, if I had a time machine, I’d go back to the ’60s and form some kind of writing commune. Just creating, somewhere out in the woods. Yeah. Nice. When I see this group, I think about that.
So, for that reason alone, I’d like to see them go through!
A young singer, Danielle Stallings, was next. She said her biggest audience ever was her school talent show in front of 100 people. So, from 100 to millions and millions. I wonder what that feels like. She does have a powerful voice. And I love the 100s to millions story. Sharon said she has a powerful vulnerability and I think there’s something to that. She comes out on stage and she’s herself. She has a genuine quality that I think will resonate with America. There’s so much in Hollywood and on TV that pretends to talent. But when it’s simply genuine, well, that’s refreshing.
After the break, it was Donovan & Rebecca. This is a great act. An act that I’m sure is going to find its way to Cirque du Soleil. Donovan said that tonight is a very dangerous act (as was their last one). And it certainly was. As one point, Rebecca was hanging upside down with Donovan simply holding her foot. From a very big height. Wow. What’s the biggest risk I took today?
Oh, that reminds me. I should do some sit-ups today. I’ll get on that.
Your favorite is up now. Big Barry. C’mon. Admit it. You like this act. It makes you happy to see Barry living his dream. Howie likes him. Howard doesn’t. And Sharon? Well, she’s in the middle. What I like about him is that his passion is his act. He is himself. He got a quick X from Howard. A second from Sharon. The audience wasn’t totally on board. But he did it. Of particular interest was the argument between Howard and Howie. Stern told Mandel that he owed an apology to the other singers that didn’t get through because Barry took the spot. But I have to say this: if those kinds of apologies were given, Hollywood would spend it’s whole day apologizing to America.
After the break, Stern and Mandel were still going at it. Real? Scripted? Who knows. Whatever.
The next act? A comedian from New York. Tom Cotter. He has great material. And a big family. So he needs a bit of success. From a few folks at a comedy club to an audience of millions. He took a risk tonight with a bit more highbrow material, and it seemed to go over pretty well once he warmed up. It was smart and, as Howard said, “smooth.” Stern called him the man to beat. I’m sure a comic loves to hear that. As much as a writer wants to be called a fresh voice. Hard praise to get, but gratifying when received.
I hope everyone in Nobody Nation gets a chance to hear the kind of praise they dream about. And, that they give that praise to others.
The crossbow guy…Ben Blaque. A man who’s always a millimeter away from disaster. Or prison. This is so dangerous. He said he doesn’t have the bugs worked out totally. Um…I’m not sure I’d want to hear that if I were his assistant. After some showmanship, he piled 4 crossbows and we all took a deep breath. And, luckily for live TV, everyone lived. And, somehow Stern worked Big Barry into his comments. And a dig into Howie.
So what about you? Do your dreams include arrows flying at your body? If so, you probably have some really interesting past lives.
Last, but not least, Tim Hockenberry. I really like this guy. I like his story about overcoming addiction, building his family, and following his dream. He vowed tonight to overcome his “Joe Cocker” persona by singing a song by Katy Perry. And he was incredible. Definitely a standout act. He’ll hopefully go through, and we’ll enjoy more by Hockenberry.
There are your 12 acts. Who will go through to the semifinals?
You’ll just have to wait. Isn’t that what life is all about? Consider it practice for you while your dreams are brewing.