By: Jacob Elyachar, jakes-take.com
Last week, the America’s Got Talent: Season 11 live shows began at their new home: The Dolby Theatre.
We also saw the first deadlock of the season, when Simon, Heidi, Mel B and Howie could not make up their minds on advancing Deadly Games or Hara into the Semi-Finals. The decision went back to your votes, America, and you voted to send Deadly Games into the next round and one of my favorites, Hara, home! (Boo!)
Tonight, 12 more acts fought for a place in the Semi-Finals. Which acts rose to the occasion? Whose dreams came crashing down by the sound of a buzzer? Read on to find out!
Up first, wild card dance crew Flip! The Quebec, Canada natives were cut for the Outlawz (who crumbled under the pressure of the live shows). The ladies channeled their inner Sias and Fleur Easts as they performed an entertaining routine that was part halftime show and part America’s Best Dance Crew. They entertained me and put a smile on my face. B+
One of my favorite singers left in the competition is Moya Angela! The Las Vegas singer has moved me since her first performance of Celine Dion’s “It’s All Coming Back to Me Now.” This time, she sang the late Whitney Houston’s “I Didn’t Know My Strength.” She had me in tears at the opening notes. Moya not only made all of her students proud, but I believe that Whitney was smiling down upon her. One of the best performances of the season! A-
Viktor Kee is probably one of the most talented acts I have seen this season. Every time he stepped on his stage, Viktor delivered an unforgettable performance. I was hypnotized by his juggling, flexibility, showmanship, and comedic timing. If this act does not get to the finale, there is no justice. A
12-year-old Kadie Lynn Robertson reminds me of a young Carrie Underwood, but without the enormous talent backing her up. I would have automatically buzzed her when she played her guitar. There are so much better singers in this competition (example: Moya Angela). She would have benefited a couple of years and auditioned for The Voice. C-
I am extremely surprised that Ryan Stock and AmberLynn are still standing. They are one of the grossest acts that I have seen in America’s Got Talent history. Their stunt was horrific, and he almost got killed on live television! I would have buzzed after he composed himself. Safety first, everyone! F
Simon Cowell’s Golden Buzzer act, Calysta Bevier, is a cancer survivor and yes, she is an inspiration, but I was worried that she would crumble under the pressure of the live shows. She tackled Sara Baraellis’ “Brave” and yes, it was poignant, but I thought that Calysta could have cut loose vocally. Hopefully, she will do that in the semi-finals! B
“Actions speak louder than words!” That phrase is what Reba McEntire said to 15-year-old Sofie Dossi when she pressed the Golden Buzzer earlier this season. My jaw dropped several levels to the ground when Sofie performed. The stunts she brilliantly executed was just astonishing, and I was shocked that she perfectly shot her crossbow with her feet while blindfolded. All I have to say to Sofie is “See you in the finals!” A+
Thommy and Amelie (The Clairvoyants) have shocked me since their haunting first audition. They did not disappoint me during the Judge Cuts. Tonight, they tested the limits of their powerful connection. They used their favorite sweets (and my favorite)-the jelly beans for this act. Amelie correctly predicted the candies that both Thommy and Heidi consumed. Next, they turned their attention to Mel B. They asked Scary Spice to pick out a random number of jelly beans, and she correctly chose 22 jelly beans, and Howie suggested that his dream jelly bean would be spicy chocolate. Then, they revealed the board with all four predictions on it, and it came true! A+
The worst mistake that the American Idol judges (Harry Connick Jr, Jennifer Lopez, and Keith Urban) made during its final years was letting go of Sal Valentinetti for abysmal singers such as Qaaasim Middleton, Daniel Seavey, Quentin Alexander, and even eventual winner Nick Fradiani during Season 14! Tonight, he transformed One Direction’s “The Story of My Life” into a song that Sinatra and Dean Martin would fight to record. Sal’s showmanship and pitch perfect vocals blew me away, and I could not stop smiling! A
ThroWings is one of my favorite danger acts this season. Every time they perform, ThroWings takes the audience to new acrobatic heights. Tonight, they added one of the riskiest elements in entertainment: strobe lights. While my eyes were unable to watch that part of the performance, their stunts throughout the entire 90 seconds were sturdy and satisfied me! B+
Fans were outraged when Rubik’s cube magician Stephen Brundage was eliminated during the Judge Cuts. Thanks to the show’s enthusiastic fans, Stephen received the third and final Wild Card spot this season. He asked Simon to guard a giant Rubik’s cube, while Heidi picked out a color die. Once, Mel B confirmed the color. She screamed “red.” After working with the ladies, he asked Howie to mix up a Rubik’s cube and Stephen matched Howie’s cube, and he revealed that the cube Simon guarded matched with Howie’s. What a way to redeem yourself, Stephen! A
I am going to be blunt here; Stephen Brundage should have closed the show! Sos & Victoria reminded me so much of Quick Change from Season One that I wanted to jump into my television and run down the aisles of Dolby Theatre and hit all of the buzzers. The act was not entertaining at all and abysmal from the first ten seconds. F
Acts that should move on: Moya Angela, Viktor Kee, Sofie Dossi, The Clairvoyants, Sal Valentinetti, ThroWings & Stephen Brundage
Tomorrow night, Fitz & the Tantrums team up with one of the show’s greatest acts of all-time: iLuminate!