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America’s Got Talent: Season 11, Semi-finals, 8/30/16

August 31st, 2016 · No Comments

by Lyn Jensen

For this week and next, semi-finals are happening on America’s Got Talent. Tuesday America voted for five acts (out of eleven) to send to the semi-finals. The previous round consisted of three groups of twelve acts, with five eliminations in each group, meaning a total of twenty-one acts remain. That sounds like the semi-final brackets aren’t balanced–so unless some twist is coming, next week we’ll see ten acts. For now let’s just focus on who’s likely to make the final round in two weeks:

  1. Sal Valentinetti turns on his Sinatra voice for “That’s Life.” The judges love him, and so does the audience. He has the potential to win, but he barely squeaked through last round. Even if he gets squeezed out, he at least got to sing for America’s vote, which is better than what American Idol allowed him.
  2.  Magician Blake Vogt gave a spotty performance and got a mixed reception from the judges tonight. He’s supposed to be someone who’s known in the world of magic already, but he hasn’t shown himself to be Vegas headliner material. (He’s more Vegas lounge act material.) Maybe he’s got enough name recognition to get votes, but he’s not the only magician with name recognition on tonight’s bill.
  3. Family musical trio Edgar has all the ingredients to win, being the kind of act that appeals to the Heartland.
  4. Tonight’s young girls (see 9. and 11. below) risk cancelling each other out. Comic Lori Mae Hernandez barely squeaked by last round, and she didn’t exactly kill it tonight.
  5. Youth choir Musicality are inspirational but whether that’s enough, given the strength of tonight’s competition, is in doubt.
  6.  Deadly Games shows it’s possible to be a dark romantic Gothic knife-throwing act, especially one that’s spiced up with whips and arrows. They’d fit in at a Goth-rock fest, but they were on the bubble last round.
  7. Tape Face, comic mime with punk ‘tude, doesn’t have the kind of Heartland appeal that wins TV talent shows.
  8. Of the two magicians tonight, Jon Dorenbos put on the more Vegas-level act. The fact that he plays for the Philadelphia Eagles means he’s got name recognition, too.
  9. The judges keep gushing about how America will remember the first time they saw Grace Vanderwaal. Funny, I can’t remember her from week to week.  I admit the 12-year-old with the ukulele and the quirky voice hasn’t had any problem attracting votes so far.
  10. In the last round Simon Cowell called Malevo an Argentine version of Riverdance. They’re the one dance troupe left in the field but they were on the bubble last round. America’s voters may prefer home-team acts.
  11. Fourteen-year-old Laura Bretan could be opera’s next big thing, but AGT is looking for Vegas’ next big thing.  Mel B said the contestant “literally” blew the roof off the place. She didn’t–no roofs were harmed in the making of tonight’s episode.

Most likely to advance:  Edgar isn’t going anywhere. Musicality, Laura Bretan, and Grace Vanderwaal also have had no problem advancing this far, and they didn’t do anything to lose votes tonight. If any of the remaining musical acts elbow their way in, both magicians could be crowded out, and so could Tape Face. As much as I’d like to see Sal Valentinetti and Malevo in the finals, they were on the bubble in the previous round. So were Lori Mae Hernandez and Deadly Games. All four are in the position of having to move up several slots to make the finals.   

Tags: America's Got Talent