By: Jacob Elyachar, jakes-take.com
Welcome back, America’s Got Talent! I missed you so much! (I even missed Heidi Klum, too!)
Tonight, the Dolby Theatre hosted the final quarterfinals round. Which of the last 12 acts impressed Simon Cowell, Heidi Klum, Mel B, and Howie Mandel and might have a chance to move on to the semifinals round?
Read on to find out!
Up first to face the judges and America’s vote, Estonian native contortionist Vello Vaher! The performer’s act took place on an erected pirate ship. Yes, I admire his flexibility, but to be honest…is this a $1,000,000 act? I don’t think so; I wished I was at the desk to buzz him. It was just boring as hell! F
I love Ronee Martin! Her voice always gave me chills, and she delivered impeccable vocal performances all season long. She tackled the classic “Lean on Me” for her Dolby Theatre debut. Her velvet vocals gave me the first case of the goosies, and I pray that America votes for her to appear in the semifinals. A
Kadan Bart Rockett and his sister, Brooklyn, seemed cute in both the Auditions and the Judge Cuts, but I hoped they stepped up to the plate. After Brooklyn had handed handcuffs to the judges, the quartet handcuffed Kadan and Brooklyn decided to take her revenge on her brother for the past two shows. He barely escaped his sister’s chainsaws and reappeared inside the tool box. While it was a good trick, it is not a $1,000,000 Las Vegas-worthy act. D
Ever since I saw Linkin’ Bridge audition in Los Angeles, I became an instant fan and prayed that they made it to the Live Rounds. Tonight, the Louisville, Kentucky natives made their Dolby Theatre debut and once again delivered an impeccable performance. Their cover of Willie Nelson’s “Always on My Mind” shook the Dolby Theatre to its core. Their harmonies were polished and on point, and I believe that they are AGT’s answer to Pentatonix. A+
Nine-year-old Daniel and his mother, Alla, took the stage. While they have impeccable choreography, and their footwork was excellent, I had to think about the $1,000,000 prize and the Las Vegas headline show, and I had to agree with Howie, this is the same routine once again. Mark Ballas and the Houghs would have done a better presentation. C
Blake Vogt had an impossible challenge going into tonight’s show, how could he separate himself from the other magicians? His routine was created for the show. He asked for audience participation and after he had picked out assistant, Blake asked for a bird and a blue jay egg fell from the box. He asked Mel B, Howie, and Heidi to select a card randomly and they chose the Queen of Diamonds. Magically, the card appeared from the egg. While he was allergic to the eggs, blue jay feathers rained down from the stage. I will be honest; Blake disappointed me. Compared to Steven and John, Blake is a distant third in the magic game. C-
LA-based family music trio Edgar performed in front of their hometown with a cover of Carole King’s “You’ve Got A Friend.” Based on the talent in the mix, I completely forgot about Edgar, but their impeccable harmonies and arrangement made sure that they were back front and center in potential finalist talk. Bravo, guys! A
Comedian Julia Scotti made me laugh and cry every time she took the stage. I am so glad that she made it to the live rounds. In her routine, she talked about her single life, deformed cats, bedside manner, spoons having sex, and her idea of a perfect relationship. Julia had me laughing with her superb punchlines. I would love to see her in the finals. A-
Another LA native performed in front of his hometown at the Dolby Theatre. Brian Justin Crum has been one of my favorite music acts since he auditioned. His one-of-a-kind voice blew me away, and his haunting performances make people think, cry and jump up for joy. Brian tackled one of my Phil Collins’ songs of all-time: “In the Air Tonight” and my humble opinion, Brian just ricocheted himself to the finals with that spectacular cover. A+
Dance troupe Malevo has made an enormous impact on the season. Tonight, the troupe took their act to new heights. I could not keep my eyes off them. They brought the fun back to the Dolby Theatre and energized the entire building. If they are in this year’s finals, then there is something wrong with America’s votes! A+
I thought it would be very hard for The Passing Zone to follow Malevo. During their last act, they promised Simon to use Howie, Mel B, and Heidi into their act. True to their word, they brought up the veteran judges. After lots of screaming, the guys added new elements such as giant planets and confetti into their act. I found their act hysterical and I hope that they move forward to the next round and use Simon as a part of their act. B+
Howie Mandel’s Golden Buzzer act, 12-year-old Grace VanderWaal, had the honor to close the show. Tonight, Grace dedicated her original song to her sister. While she may not have the pipes of fellow youth singers such as Laura Bretan and Janya Brown, Grace’s heart and superb songwriting will inspire kids around the world to pursue their dreams. Win or lose; Grace VanderWaal is an inspiration to youth around the world. A-
Acts that should move on: Ronee/Grace VanderWaal, Linkin’ Bridge, Edgar Family Band, Julia Scotti, Brian Justin Crum, Malevo & The Passing Zone
Tomorrow night, the results will be revealed and Recycled Percussion will provide the entertainment! Which acts will have to fight for the Dunkin’ and the Judges’ saves?