‘America’s Got Talent’ Season 13 Auditions Ends With A Golden Buzzer

Heidi Klum revealed her Season 13 Golden Buzzer act to Simon, Mel B, and Howie. (Photo property of NBC)

By: Jacob Elyachar, jakes-take.com

All eyes were on Heidi Klum as she introduced us to her Golden Buzzer act. This season, a plethora of performers took to the Pasadena Civic Center stage.  Their goal was to impress Klum and her fellow judges (Simon Cowell, Mel B, and Howie Mandel) for the chance to perform in front of America at the Dolby Theatre next month.

So far, we have seen impeccable acts entertain the audience. However, only singers Amanda Mena, Courtney Hadwin, and Michael Ketterer plus acrobatic group Zurcaroh have received the Golden Buzzer from Mel B, Mandel, Cowell, and show host Tyra Banks respectively.  Who impressed the Project Runway host to earn her Golden Buzzer? Read on to find out!

The AGT crew prepared for the final day of auditions at the Pasadena Civic Center in Pasadena, California and the Hamster Wheel trio stepped onto the stage. The Minnesota natives build a complicated machine that combined science and technology that involved Simon calling Tyra’s phone number. The iPhone fell and started a chain reaction that released numerous contraptions that ended with a “Golden Buzzer.” Their 300 hours of work paid off as Simon gave the gentlemen a standing ovation and they received additional “Yeses” from Mel B and Howie.

13-year-old Matt “Patches” Johnson performed an original song that was about the essence of performing.  Before he performed, “Patches” mentioned that he would buy tickets for Hamilton, if he won the $1,000,000 prize.  I sensed that Lin-Manuel Miranda was a significant influence on him because he duplicated his style during the performance. “Patches” received four Yeses from the judges and the opportunity to move onto the next round.

Danger acts continue to play a significant role on this show. After a human balance beam duo and a knife-throwing duo wowed the judges, Sergey and Sasha, a Las Vegas-based father-daughter duo hoped to advance to the next round.  They have done this act for ten years, and Sasha is scared of the day when her father leaves this planet. The head balancing stunts they performed reminded me a little bit of the danger duo KriStef Brothers, but that stopped once Sergey climbed up and down a ladder without dropping Sasha on the stage. All four judges voted to advance them to the next round.

The Angel City Chorale piled onto the Pasadena Civic Center stage. Sue Fink, the choir director, wanted to bring together a collective group of performers together that celebrated diversity. I got chills from their dramatic interpretation of Toto’s “Africa.” Their spectacular arrangement of the classic 80s anthem made me smile, and Simon called them “the best choir they ever had.” The choir advanced to the Judges’ Cuts round.

After a series of stand-up comedians auditioned for the judges, 32-year-old Oliver Graves walked onto the stage. I agreed with Tyra, Oliver did not look like the average stand-up comedian, he looked like a gothic Spencer’s employee.  Oliver’s jokes regarding insomnia and online dating were creepy, but there is an underdog-esque vibe that I saw.  I thought that he was going to be buzzed, but I was so happy that Howie, Mel B, and the audience gave him a standing ovation.  I hope that he does not get lost in the comedians’ category during the next round.

12-year-old Angel Garcia’s smile impressed Heidi Klum, but the Los Angeles native hoped that his love of singing would earn him the Golden Buzzer.  Angel has an excellent voice for his age, and I give him kudos for singing the classic Spanish ballad “El Triste” for his audition.  Of the young men that have auditioned for this season so far, I would rank him at the top of his category. He received a standing ovation from both Heidi and Mel B, who called Angel “brilliant” and he “sounded beautiful.” However, Simon and Howie were unhappy with the song choice.  While Howie said “No,” Simon decided to give Angel another chance and joined the ladies in sending Angel to the next round.

Pam brought her dog, Oscar, to her AGT audition. While Pam started to learn piano, Oscar began to sing. She also wanted Oscar to meet Simon, who has been looking for a singing dog for years. Honestly, Oscar and Pam were a waste of time. As Simon wanted to press the Golden Buzzer for them, I would have buzzed them for sure. While I would have sided with Heidi and not advance them to the next round. However, Mel B voted with the guys and now we might see them at the Judges’ Cuts.

25-year-old Hunter Price performed Bryan Adams’ “Everything I Do.” I got chills, but Simon stopped because he thought it was very “karaoke competition.” When Hunter sang his original tune, I liked his gritty vocals, and I connected with him more.  After Simon prodded him with questions, Hunter revealed that he faced challenges in his life including dealing with homelessness and being alone since 18-years-old.  While he received three “Yeses” from Simon and the ladies, Howie advised him that he needed to open up to America and be more authentic in the next round.

The final audition of Season 13 belonged to 15-year-old Makayla Phillips. She became a lifelong fan of the NBC talent competition and vowed to audition for the show. She tackled Demi Lovato’s “Warrior” for her Judges’ audition.  There were some Xtina-like vocal growls, and I loved her phrasing.  Heidi gave Makayla, her Golden Buzzer and proudly proclaimed: “I just found the winner!” I think Demi would be proud of this performance.

Next week, the Judges’ Cuts begin with special guest judge Ken Jeong!

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Copyright 2015 Jacob Elyachar