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Recap of The America's Got Talent 7 Los Angeles and St. Louis Audition Episode (May 14, 2012)
This is a recap of the premiere episode of the 7th season of America's Got Talent. This episode also marks the first appearance for Howard Stern, the controversial new judge who is replacing Piers Morgan. Sharon Osbourne and Howie Mandel are returning judges, and Nick Cannon is hosting again. The episode aired on Monday, May 14, 2012.
Of course, there is the normal intro piece for the premiere episode. After that, the show turns to auditions in two cities: Los Angeles, California and St. Louis, Missouri.
For those who haven't watched AGT before, keep in mind that it is half a variety or circus side show and half a talent contest. There will be a lot of joke contestants getting through to the next round for the fun of it rather than for pure talent's sake. This is just the nature of the show and something you will have to get used to if you like to watch reality TV talent shows for the acts who are actually talented.
This is the start of the episode:
The start of this episode shows some guy doing a human-cannonball stunt, but it doesn't say whether he makes it through or not. The show then turns to an introduction of Howard Stern, who is the new judge replacing Piers Morgan.
Aoni Jackson is up first, but he turns out to be one of the joke contestants. He was supposed to be a magician, but he didn't really do any tricks and did some pseudo stripping act. He was buzzed and eliminated right away.
Someone who is apparently called the "Bird Lady" is up now. She comes out with all sorts of birds on her outfit. I don't know why none of them is flying away, but they are just sitting there. She ends up singing, and her voice is actually quite good. The birds may have gotten her TV time, but they also distracted from the otherwise decent singing. Only Howie Mandel wants to put her through to Las Vegas, so Bird Lady is eliminated.
There is a parade of bad singer now, and they are all cut right away.
The next act is also a music act, but he is a serious one. William Close is 42, and his fiancee is 5 months pregnant. William makes his own musical instruments and plays them, as well. He constructed a huge "earth harp" in the theater for this audition. After playing this harp, the judges all put him through to Las Vegas, noting how unique he was compared to other musical acts.
The Elements Dance Crew is the first dancing act auditioning for America's Got Talent 7. It is an all-girl clogging group. They are pretty proficient but not all that unique. Nonetheless, the judges all approve and send them on to the Las Vegas auditions.
The next three acts all make it, but they did not get much airtime. All Wheel Sports is a kind of extreme sports act, including stunt bikes and trampolines. There is a bit too much going on in the act, but they make it through to Las Vegas. Amazing Elizabeth is a young girl who does an aerial act, and Chris LeVar is a rapper who did a rap about the judges.
The next act gets a lot more airtime and a full audition. Jorge and Alexa Narvaez are father and daughter. They both sing. Jorge also plays the guitar, and Alexa acts like a comedian before and after the musical performance. It is the classic America's Got Talent "cute kid" act with a father thrown into the mix. They make it through to Las Vegas with three YES votes from the judges.
Now, the show starts the St. Louis auditions.
Ben Blaque gets through to Las Vegas with his crossbow act. I didn't see much talent in this. He even had a mounted telescope on the crossbow. I don't see much exciting about popping balloons with a crossbow. He says he can step it up in Las Vegas by shooting while blindfolded. All three judges give him a YES vote.
Light Wire Theater is up next. This is blacklight act in the same vein as Team iLuminate and Fighting Gravity. They do a dinosaur theme for this first audition. The act got through to Las Vegas. Howie thinks they have advanced beyond the previous blacklight acts, but I am not convinced. Nonetheless, they have a decent chance of making a deep run in America's Got Talent 7.
Some crazy guy comes out with a snake and then puts a huge scorpion inside his mouth. He goes through to Las Vegas, as well.
There was then a ventriloquist with a dog puppet. I wanted to see this act in full, but they only showed a few seconds of the audition. This guy could be one to watch if they choose to feature him later. Or maybe they just don't want a comedian/ventriloquist this year.
The Stick and Move Dance Crew also made it to Las Vegas with three YES votes from the judges. They showed only a few seconds of the audition, though.
Sanjula Vamana is 35 years old. He is a stay-at-home dad. Sanjula sticks needles into his mouth. I'm not sure how it is done, but this type of act either gets cut by the judges or doesn't get the public votes if given a chance. In this case, the judges just cut him right away.
Two ridiculous acts come out. One is a bunch of guys playing kazoos, and the ohter is Stormin Norman, who carved holes into a pumpkin. They were both eliminated on the spot.
Loyalty Dance Crew is next. These guys (and one or two girls from what I could see) are from Murfreesboro, Tennessee. They are a fast dance crew but totally overhyped by the judges. I can see nothing has really changed with the addition of Howard Stern. They are off to Las Vegas and have a good chance of making the voting rounds.
Simply Sergio is 47 years old. He sings two songs.The first one is just ridiculous and sounds horrible. But he convinces the judges to let him sing "God Bless America." It is actually half decent, so the judges vote YES and give him a chance in Las Vegas.
Closing the show are Maurice and Shanice Hayes. He is 62, and she is 18. These two are also a father and daughter duo, possibly setting up a Las Vegas rivalry between them and Jorge and Alexa. They sing "You've Got a Friend" and are both pretty good singers. The judges all put the duo through to the next round.