“America’s Got Talent” aired the second round of judge cuts last night (July 24) on NBC. The next group of returning acts faced AGT judges Simon Cowell, Heidi Klum, Howie Mandel and Mel B, along with actress and guest judge Olivia Munn to perform for a shot at the live shows. Some contenders upped their game and others fell short of their first auditions. A breathtaking close-up magician and a Golden Buzzer-winning choir were among the night’s best performances and will be moving on to the live quarter-finals.
Shin Lim Stuns Olivia Munn
The show opened with The Human Fountains and while they definitely stepped it up by crafting a story while spitting into each other’s mouths, a raw egg transfer was just a little too much to bear. Guest judge Olivia Munn joined Simon in being totally grossed out by their act. It’s no big surprise their AGT journey has ended.
Close up magician Shin Lim recruited Olivia to observe his routine from a seat on the stage and once again, he astounded everyone (including her!) by making cards disappear and reappear with the snap of his fingers. Heidi told him out of all the magicians she has seen, he’s the only one who makes her believe magic is possible. We can’t wait to see what he pulls out of his sleeve next!
Super Sweet Sinatra Cover Eventually Ends in Shocking Exit
Though young people have won the last two seasons on AGT, this season’s group of talented kids aren’t faring too well thus far. Last week, young rapper Patches was cut. This week, adorable 5-year-old singer Sofie Fatu delivered another Sinatra cover with amazing charisma. She was right on the key changes in the beloved “New York, New York” anthem and her bubbly personality is just infectious! Everyone loved her! But, with so much intense competition this season, sadly, she didn’t make the cut. This had to be a heart-wrenching decision for the judges. Hopefully, she doesn’t give up her singing dreams– she’s got a lot of star potential!
Double Dose of Dance Crews
Colombian dance troupe Reyes Del Swing and hip-hop dance crew Future Kingz hit the stage with two very different dance routines. The first team delivered a colorful, high-flying routine. The second group did a tightly-choreographed, enthralling routine against a Bruno Mars, Bel Biv DeVoe and M.C. Hammer medley. Both teams were phenomenal. Future Kingz was ultimately chosen to move forward after a four-judge standing ovation which excluded Howie.
Angel City Chorale Spreads Their Wings and Shines
The 145-person choir, Angel City Chorale, intentionally celebrates diversity with its members representing different kinds of ethnicity, gender, religion and sexual orientation. They amazed everyone with their sound effect-laden “Africa” audition. This week, they did theatrical movements and to an African hymn of some kind and it was brilliant. The collective sound and sizzling synergy of the group brought so much light and energy to the stage and the room. Olivia Munn was so moved by their inclusive message and beautiful performance that she smashed her Golden Buzzer to send them straight to the live shows. Could Angel City Choir make history as the first-ever choir to win the "America's Got Talent" title?
Now You See Him, Now You Don’t
It was frustrating to see dog act Shannon & Reckon fall apart when Reckon decided he wanted to play more than perform. These kinds of acts are so fun! In fairness to the other contenders though, it makes sense they didn’t move on to the next round. Likewise, dazzling jump roper Vivien Vajda performed with two sprained ankles (ouch!) and unfortunately, her routine fell short of the sparkle and sizzle of her original audition.
Stage magician, Rob Lake really stepped it up though with a mind-blowing act in which he was chained inside a box and cloaked under a curtain, only to swap places with his assistant at another platform across the stage. It was amazing – and the judges rewarded him by putting him through to the next round.
A Singer is Stopped and a Comic Cries Happy Tears
Candidly single aspiring music artist Joseph O’Brien made a huge impression on Simon with his “Hello” audition. However, this week, the AGT show boss stopped him shortly into his Reo Speedwagon cover. He was stunned, but, rebounded quickly by singing and playing piano on a pretty original ballad. Simon loved his perseverance and he survived elimination.
Comedienne Vickie Barbolak told an emotional backstory about various life struggles and then had the audience roaring with laughter when she went into her routine. Making people laugh isn’t easy and she obviously has a knack for it. It was touching to watch her break down in tears when the judges advised her they were putting her through to the next round. She deserves this break and we can’t wait to hear what she does next. At the end of the night Angel City Chorale, Joseph O'Brien, Vickie Barbolak, Future Kingz, Rob Lake, Shin Lim and dynamic accordion player Hans are all going through to the live quarter-finals.
“America’s Got Talent” airs on Tuesdays at 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT on NBC.