The votes were tallied and Nick Cannon went for a more tailored look in his rich brown suit for Wednesday’s announcements of the second group of selected semifinalists, but predictably, Piers Morgan said, upon reflection, that he only regretted that he failed to X two more talents amidst all his tantrums Tuesday night. The first vote might have been a no-brainer, considering the bobbles, but the rest were not quite as simple, yet just as proudly as the country was celebrated Tuesday night, the votes spoke on Wednesday!
Right away, The Rhinestone Ropers, Thomas John, and Silhouettes were called as first up for the results. Piers Morgan had called the performances train wrecks for all but the Silhouettes, who shined under the red white and blue to spell America and win ovation for their performance. Those words might be too harsh, but it was certainly an off night for the offbeat comedic juggler and the Western showstoppers, so it came as no surprise when the vote sent the 42 in Silhouettes sailing to the semifinals. The hardest part was waiting for those tense young faces to turn to beaming smiles, but this act has enough energy and creativity to keep performances coming on strong, and the decision delighted all!
Twenty-something four-man band, Hot Chelle Rae were the perfect choice for interim entertainment, as their hit “Tonight Tonight” makes a perfect summer fun song, and their own explosion in popularity has come nearly as quickly as it has for the talents taking the AGT stage. Now relishing their million download status, the guys gave a bounce to the night with their tune and tattoos covered by tuxedo jackets.
As Howie Mandel monitored fan reaction on Twitter through the evening, the second trio of Steven Retchless, Attack Dance Crew, and Geechy Guy came up to face their futures. Mr. Mandel was selected a spokesman, and he said the choice came down to the quirky comedian or the masterful pole dancer, neither of whom he felt had mid-America appeal, but when the revelation came, Steven Retchless relied on America to be gender-neutral in appreciating the marvel of strength and balance he brought to his display on the poles, something Piers never managed. Steven will be twisting and twirling on for the semifinals, and seemed not so surprised that Piers’ prejudice was superseded. Howie admonished him to modify his act for mass appeal, while Sharon reminded, “just be yourself.” If America can embrace Prince Poppycock as happened last season, Steven Retchless shouldn’t be stressing too much.
The tougher choices of the night started when the three singers, Daniel Joseph Baker, Dani Shay, and Dylan Andre were called up to face the music. The three D’s all have such talent, but this season more than any seems to be seeking those already “stage ready,” and by that standard, Daniel Joseph Baker singularly stands out! Normally ready with an outspoken phrase, he was clearly humbled, and thanked America for letting “me be myself.” No more singing in the bedroom, Daniel. Your booking agent better already be in line. The singers aren’t top-heavy in the selections this season, though, as the variety acts are steep competition!
Urban acrobatic team, Traces, were tremendous in their performance of athleticism, strength, and artistry–they can spin any hoop they choose– and it was odd to observe Piers Morgan standing in applause for this all but one male group, who did much of their act on poles! Perplexing, isn’t it? Their performance was exciting enough to prompt a wish to jet off to NYC to catch their show at Union Square Theatre!
The final group, comprised of the Smage Bros. Riding Shows, Landon Swank, and sister singers, Mona Lisa stood for the judges vote, but the act with the lowest tally is sent home before deliberations begin, and Mona Lisa took that first hit. The sisters graciously thanked America, the judges, and their fans for the opportunity they have had to show their talents and learn over these weeks. “Love you, girls!” was shouted from the audience as they exited, and these ladies deserve that love, and they deserve to keep sharing their talents, too. The cyclists of suspense, the Smage Brothers, and magician, Landon Swank, stood for the judges’ deliberation. The brothers were so excited, they thought they had won once they made the night’s final pair, and the courageous “brother by choice” jokingly remarked he wasn’t sure if he wanted to go on any further, considering how much closer to death he could come! Shockingly, Piers Morgan decided his vote would go to Landon Swank, who he had tried to call down Tuesday, and Sharon Osbourne and Howie Mandel, who told Landon he had performed the best illusion he had ever witnessed, cast their vote to the Smage Bros. Riding Show, who doubtless will be jumping to higher platforms and provoking more heart palpitations in coming weeks!
Next week, the third dozen of talents take the stage to determine their futures. “America’s Got Talent airs at 9 PM ET Tuesday and Wednesday on NBC.
“America’s Got Talent” telecast, July 20, 2011 NBC TV.