It’s the last group of quarter-finalists on “America’s Got Talent” Season 9. Who will advance to the Top 20?
1. Bad Boys of Ballet, dance troupe
In terms of dance talent, this group is no joke. They are fantastic dancers. But I’m not sure this act is big enough for this show. Simply dancing ballet-hip hop to current music isn’t enough. They’d be great as part of a variety show, but there are bigger, flashier group acts that use more of the stage that are better suited to this competition.
2. One Voice Children’s choir, children’s choir
Well, this combines adorable children with the “Frozen” song that is everywhere lately, so they’re getting through for sure. The soloist is very good, though it’s interesting that they’re called “One Voice” and yet they feature a stand-out soloist, you know? Either way, this once again falls into the category of “I think there should be a children’s division on this show.” But I will be shocked if they don’t advance.
3. Jonah Smith, singer
I like this guy. He reminds me of Bruce Hornsby and Steve Winwood. He has a nice tone to his voice and a funky vibe going on, though I do keep wishing the camera would pull back a little — it’s not like the close-up is offending me, but I’d love to see the whole stage before the very end. Anyway, I want to see more of him, but that performance was very low-key and I worry that he’ll be forgotten by night’s end. Hmm.
4. Dom the Bom’s Triple Threat, card-throwing act
This is dumb. These kids are adorable and all, but this act is all over the place and kind of pointless. Plus a good chunk of the tricks don’t even work. Again, this should be on “America’s Got Talent: Juniors.” If it were adults doing this nonsense, Howard would have X’d them with a quickness. Sorry, moppets. No.
5. Extreme, dance group
Now this is a dance group that can fill up the stage. They’ve got tricks, they’re very in sync and everyone looks like they’re having a blast. If I had to pick between the Bad Boys of Ballet and this group (for this show), I would pick this group in a heartbeat. Bummer about the gaff with the final pose, but overall, really strong.
6. Emil and Dariel, cellists
This reminds me a lot of Nuttin’ but Stringz those so many years ago on “AGT.” However, that act had more charisma than these guys. Maybe because the violin is a more portable instrument, so it allowed more freedom on stage? Hmm. These guys are obviously very talented, but I just have no desire to see more of them, you know? Sorry, guys.
7. Nina Burri, contortionist
This is a very pretty act — beautiful in an ethereal and almost creepy way at the same time, it’s neat. I’m not sure she’ll advance and I certainly don’t think she’ll get to the finals, not with the hand balancers in the mix (one with a dog). But she’s got an inspiring story and is good at what she does, so maybe she’ll advance. It depends on how the rest of the night shakes out. I do agree with Howard that she’s mesmerizing to watch, but I also agree with Heidi that this act might not be big enough for a stage show without other things going on around her.
8. Quintavious Johnson, singer
Another adorable moppet. But Quintavious is the real deal. I wish “And I’m Telling You (I’m Not Going)” would go away because it’s so ubiquitous in recent years, but regardless, Quin is one of the strongest singers in this competition. He’s obviously young and can certainly use some seasoning, polish and coaching, but for a young kid — man, what a natural talent. He’ll grow into an incredible singer.
9. Mothmen dance, dance troupe
I’m very torn about this act. It’s definitely neat. Some moments are visually stunning, but other times it gets a little boring. And the main guy, the Mothman, isn’t charismatic enough to keep my attention. I kept finding myself wishing it was focusing more on the four backup dancers. They’re better dancers than Mothman. Hmm. I agree with Mel B., it was lacking something. Just not enough oomph there.
10. Smoothini, magician
Close-up magic is so tricky — we missed the first part of the trick because the camera wasn’t in the right position. He also really telegraphed what was coming by only showing half of those one dollar bills at any given time, plus we could see the different colored bills in his hand when he was doing the folding part. And then there was a fish? Hmm. He seems like a very likable guy, but that just wasn’t good enough.
11. Jonatan Riquelme, rola bola balancing act
Now this is an “AGT” act, you guys. It’s daring, it’s death-defying and it’s got all the glitz and trappings of a Vegas show. When he got onto that tower of metal cyclinders, my heart was in my throat. Wowza. He couldn’t really anchor a whole show on his own, but he can definitely be a part of a larger act, like perhaps with Nina the contortionist.
12. Kelli Glover, singer
I remember loving her in Season 4 and thought it was such a bummer when she got cut in Las Vegas. She does an outstanding job here, I will be disappointed if she doesn’t advance here. Kelli has such a nice rich tone to her voice — well supported, brassy at times, reined in when need be. Really lovely.
So, who should advance? For me, the five best acts tonight were Jonah Smith, Extreme, Quintavious Johnson, Jonatan Riquelme and Kelli Glover, but I think the One Voice Children’s Choice could sneak in there. Hopefully not, though. I think this week the top acts are pretty cut-and-dried.
What do you think, “AGT” fans?