The search for the No. 1 actor continued on NBC’s “America’s Got Talent: All-Stars” Monday in the fifth week of auditions.
A new group of 10 acts who have appeared on “America’s Got Talent” and other releases in the global franchise competed for two free spots in the finals: one, an act deemed worthy of the Golden Buzzer by all judges Simon Cowell, Heidi Klum and Howie Mandel and show host Terry Crews, the other elected by a panel of superfans spread across the country.
Monday’s acts included 11-year-old singer Peter Rosalita, who competed in 2021; comedian Axel Blake who won the title on ‘Britain’s Got Talent’ in 2022, and knockout group World Taekwondo who also competed in 2021.
Here’s how the evening went, you know, like a contortionist at the end of a performance.
The Golden Buzzer of the evening: singer Tom Ball
One of the most emotional moments of the evening was the return of Archie Williams, a singer unjustly imprisoned for 36 years. His rendition of Bill Withers’ “Ain’t No Sunshine” won over the judges and the crowd, but Williams was overlooked by superfans.
The judges and crew hit the Golden Buzzer for singer Tom Ball, a former contestant in the UK franchise. Cowell hailed the high school teacher’s performance of “The Sounds of Silence” as “the best performance I’ve seen in any series”.
“You’re like Susan Boyle’s grandson,” he said, “because what you’re doing isn’t what we expect.”
Mandel and Klum were also floored, as was the crowd who began chanting “Golden Buzzer.” The crews made their way to the judges’ table and all four pressed the buzzer, covering Ball in a sea of confetti.
Teenage ventriloquist Ana-Maria Mărgean
At only 13 years old, ventriloquist Ana-Maria Mărgean already has a title under her belt: she won “Romania’s Got Talent” in 2021. Mărgean’s passion for ventriloquism was ignited just a few years ago by the winner of “AGT” Terry Fator, and she received a puppet for her 11th birthday. She dreams of having a show in Las Vegas, like her idol.
Mărgean took the stage on Monday with a dog puppet maker by her mother. The two joked and sang Lesley Grace’s “You Don’t Own Me,” which wowed the judges and earned a standing ovation.
“Wow, no wonder you won,” Klum said. “You are amazing. You are beautiful. You can sing so well. I love your furry friend, and that was funny too.”
Mandy Harvey’s “angelic voice”
Mandy Harvey returned to the “AGT” stage more confident than in the first round.
The singer, who lost her hearing at 18, said when she appeared on “AGT” in 2017, she felt overwhelmed. Although she impressed the judges enough to get Cowell’s Golden Buzzer, she says she didn’t believe in herself at the time.
A more assured Harvey performed an original song called “Something I Can Feel” on Monday, which lifted the audience and the judges to their feet.
“You have the most angelic voice,” Klum said. “It’s so beautiful. It’s so sweet, and I don’t know. I feel happy. It’s just positive, just positivity oozing out of you, and I love that about you.”
“It was better than your first audition,” Cowell said. “What you do and how you do it is amazing.”
“I love it,” Klum added later. “I hope the superfans will vote for her.”
Superfan “AGT: All-Stars” vote:
When the panel’s votes were counted, their Top 3 turned out to be Rosalita, Mărgean and Harvey.
“Wow, we’ve lost some good people,” a stunned Cowell said after the other seven acts were eliminated. “I thought they might go for Archie,” said a surprised Mandel. Cowell also shared this belief.
Harvey placed third and Rosalita second. The jury selected Mărgean to advance to the final.