Week 6 of the auditions for Season 10 of “America’s Got Talent” on June 30 was so jam-packed with performances that the fun began before everyone at home or in Radio City Music Hall got settled into their seats. ENRA, comprised of two delicate Japanese dancers, and their two technical choreographers, sparkled in white, making their own stars glow in a starry sky. Howard Stern called them “quite a treat,” and had quite a lot of fun translating their language his own way, but all of the judges needed no help in commending their creative and artistic gifts. Howie translated for Howard, and gave his universal words of praise. Heidi Klum called them “super creative,” and Mel B enjoyed them “from start to finish,” so this “elegant” act will be staying for several more weeks.
Samantha Johnson remembered watching the competition as a child, and could hardly conceptualize herself being onstage to audition, and said that she had hardly sung to any sizable crowd, but from her starting note on “You Make Me Feel (Like a Natural Woman),” her soulful tone combined with her Alicia Keys meets Beyoncé look made for a stunning first impression. She got four standing ovations from the panel, and a communal affirmation that “You can SING!” “WOWSA” exclaimed Mel B, and Howie Mandel told Samantha that she “sang like a supernatural woman,” while Howard concluded that her audition was exceptional. Paul Ponce put on a show like nothing anyone had seen, with just his white fedoras, tossing them like boomerangs to balconies and beyond, moving everywhere, and shining a fetching smile. Howard Stern was first to give his definite approval, remarking how unique the performer’s skill is, forgiving “one trick” aspects because of the high energy and personality. Mel B was bothered by all that high energy, giving Paul a “no.” Heidi approved, so that left Howie Mandel to speak the fate of Ponce, finally giving his “OK” with strong crowd nudging. Next came Paul’s mom and dad, within completely different kind of act, and mom giving complete devotion to her son if the competition comes down to a vote between the two! Sylvia Sylvia is quite the sharpshooter with her bow and arrow, and she started off by just bursting two twirling balloons with one shot. Then came five arrows lined all in a row, and her willing husband standing behind her target board of balloons. Again, all five were simultaneously pierced, and hubby was none the worse! Howard Stern called Sylvia “remarkable and a wow,” Mel B said that her performance was “shocking and great,” Heidi “loved it ,” and Howie just said “yes.” A family affair is in store, but this mom is rooting for her son all the way.
Heavenly Joy is more a taste of heaven indeed than an army of Sunday choirs, and the five-year-old’s spirit filled every crack and corner of that storied venue, at the same time her tapping and stellar “Little Miss Broadway” voice stole the show, and every heart, with “In Summer” from “Frozen.” When Howard Stern asked her if she knew about Shirley Temple, Heavenly assured the judge that she had seen those movies, too, but it wasn’t Shirley Temple’s spirit inside of her, “it’s Jesus!” she exclaimed, to the joy of her parents. She also wants to give her millions to “giving clothes to all the kids that don’t have any.” More than just perfect pitch, and her talent, this little angel already has a mission for humanity. Howie said it right when he put forth that America was already in love with her, and she had four yeses in nothing flat!
Some might remember kung fu master, QI Feilong from last season, when he asked host, Nick Cannon, to give him kicks in the private area. Aside from the humor value, the panel felt that the master could muster enough panache for an AGT act then, but this time, he stuck his throat with sticks, he bent spoons with his eyes, and lifted a bicycle with his teeth. Howie was his cheerleader, and his passion for the master cajoled his co-judges to give him another showing, at least once more. All but Heidi agreed, so the master makes it for another turn. Daniel Sullivan did his strength performance on a suspended cord, and put his body in some peculiar places, and that won him praise from the panel. Heidi praised how he did his act on the cord, and Howie was amazed that he “did his act without a cup,” but still, he pleased the panel. A tumbler-contortionist flattered and floored Mel B and Nick Cannon on stage, and a power lifter lifted 15 seated people from the audience. The Mountain Faith Band made their kind of music with banjo, strings, and their amazing sister singer, and put it all to a modern song, and won the judges’ delight. The family all practice in dad’s tire shop, where they work, and their synchronicity sounds like only a family could possess. Completely sincere and unaffected, expect these performers to put a very distinctive stamp on the competition. Summer McMahon, Sylvia, North Carolina native and lead singer, says that she and her family are thrilled to “give bluegrass more of a national stage and share the music we love.” America is going to love this family, too. Quite a few promising comedians came forth, but most striking was 15-year-old, Leo Lytel, who had razor-sharp commentary on teenage life and even made predator humor palatable. He killed it with the panel and the audience, and Howie Mandel said he was on his way “to becoming a superstar in comedy,” and Howard agreed. The ladies also loved Leo’s “awkward but funny” take on the world. He’s a true comic prodigy. World record breaking hopefuls were less than wonders, except for Trizzle D, who did his thing busting 45 watermelons with his forehead. For some reason, the judges loved it, so he has another shot at smashing.
Performances transferred to the great outdoors, and the first of these performances was from Wild West Express, comprised of the Griffith family, and their neighbor. These trick riders were superb horsemen and young woman, from age 6 to 19, and they showed exquisite skill and agility as they performed somersaults, flips, side-saddle displays, and even whirling upside down, all at a gallop! They won unanimous passage onward, and Howard Stern even called them “inspirational.” The crowd also gave deafening cheers. The Godfrey Clan just had too much gosh-darn fun on their giant slip and slide to call themselves performers, so this wasn’t their day. Greg Roe jumps from such heights that he needs a crane to hoist him up. This attempt was from 18 stories, terrifying the audience, and the panel, but he touched down perfectly on his mark, and got high marks for “big balls” from Heidi and a “fabulous” from Howard. Always an equal opportunity thriller, “America’s Got Talent”made way for its first female daredevil, Nikki McBurnett. The grandma from Austin gave a terrifying but spectacular show in blowing herself up in a limousine, having herself extinguished, and then arriving with a beaming smile on stage for the judges’ verdict. It was all too much for Heidi, but the rest of the panel gave her big praise for her girl power, and a “Bravo– just what we need,” from Howard Stern. Talent is in the eye of the beholder, even when blazing from gasoline.