Season 9 Episode 18
"Semifinals: Week 1 Performances"
With only 24 acts left, competition for the million-dollar prize heats up...[button color="blue" size="small" link="http://www.nbc.com/americas-got-talent" target="blank" ]Official Site[/button]
The semifinals are here! After four weeks of intense competition in the America's Got Talent Quarterfinals, 24 acts outshined the rest and will strut their stuff once more for America's vote. Will one of tonight's acts win the million-dollar prize? Either way, the odds improve in the semifinals as six acts will move on to the Top 12 performance and six will go home.
Heidi's wild card pick, Flight Crew Jump Rope, kicks off the show with one of their patented high-energy routines. This time, they incorporate LED jump ropes and a laser light show in the background to hype up their intense leaps, skips and flips. Although Heidi and Mel B love the act, both Howard and Howie think the act feels repetitive.
Next up, 12-year-old singer Mara Justine takes the reins of the Radio City stage. She harnesses her vocals to the Kelly Clarkson anthem "Breakaway" and the power of her voice rings true with the judges, as all four give her a standing ovation. Will this help Mara break away from the field and into the finals?
Dance takes the stage next with sexy hybrid group Bad Boys of Ballet, Mel B's wild card pick. With a self-stated goal to be the rock stars of ballet, the group hits the stage with an explosive performance that highlights their verve and seamless technique. But Howard wants more from the act and harps on one performer's time spent offstage during the routine. Luckily for these talented dancers, their fate's in the hands of America, not Judge Howard Stern.
The evening's second singer seizes the stage next, Paul Ieti. He reaches into the 1990's and, with a live pianist in tow, performs The Backstreet Boys' classic "I Want It That Way." Unfortunately, all four judges deliver rough news - Paul's performance lacked the confidence of his previous auditions and Howie cites Mara as the singing act to beat.
Up next, Howie's wild card pick Mike Super takes the stage and, noting Howard's quarterfinals recommendation, leaves his spirit energy Desmond at home. Behind a curtain and operating in the blind, Mike asks Howard to choose a random card with a symbol on it. Howard picks a triangle and shows it to the audience. Suddenly, Mike's form disappears from the stage and reappears in the crowd... with a glowing triangle drawn on his hands. But that's not it - glowing triangles also appear on a group of audience members' hands! This time, even Howard applauds the illusion and reaffirms the fact Mike doesn't need Desmond to succeed.
Hand balancer Andrey Moraru comes up next and in a routine largely performed upside down, exhibits an incredible control over his body, all choreographed to a song and lights. The second standing ovation of the night occurs and the judges gush over his abilities, even though, as Mel B points out, he did encounter a couple hiccups. Will that cost him a chance at the finals?
Miguel Dakota hits the Radio City stage next. Joined by a rollicking band, he jams out to The White Stripes' hit "Seven Nation Army." Heidi refers to him as America's next heartthrob, Mel B says he's got star power and Howie believes he could win the whole thing. But Howard disagrees, convinced that Miguel lacks that certain something to push him over the edge. If America agrees with Howard, this could be Miguel's final performance on America's Got Talent.
Moving from a traditional rock band to the nontraditional, Sons of Serendip choose an unlikely cover for their semifinals performance - Swedish House Mafia's "Don't You Worry Child." They bring their own flair to the song and the judges support the move with high praise. Howie recognizes them as the most talented musical act on the show and, for once, Howard agrees. Question is, in a show packed with so much talent, can Sons of Serendip rise above the rest?
Next up is the night's second magic act, David and Leeman. They set five small bags on the stage and indicate that one of the bags contains a dangerous spike... and that they will smash the bags with their hands. Moreover, they buzz all the judges' buzzers except Heidi's and then connect her buzzer to that same spike. So if they smash the bag with the spike, they'll not only injure their hands, but they'll be knocked off the show. They ask the judges to choose which bags to smash and, one by one, they smash them without finding the hidden spike - until two remain. After incorporating Nick into the act, they request that Heidi choose the final bag to smash - and it's safe! Nick confirms that the other bag contained a real spike and the judges rave about David and Leeman's showmanship.
Comedian Dan Naturman follows the young magicians and brings his self-deprecating sense of humor to the semifinals. He makes the judges laugh and they all look forward to America "voting Naturman" - that is, except for Heidi. His jokes about Germany offend her to such a degree, she buzzes him after his performance. Hopefully it's not a sign of things to come.
Aerial Animation takes over the stage next. Just as with previous performances, the act illustrates a story using incredible visuals and difficult physical choreography timed to the cinematic experience behind them. However, this time the judges are divided by the act and they comment on its slow speed and how it differs from the previous routines, despite the implicit creativity and imagination present in tonight's performance.
After an incredible night, only one act remains - Emily West. The songstress takes a theatrical swing with a cover of the Queen hit "Who Wants to Live Forever." As she sings with bravado on stage, home movies play behind her. Her risk pays off with the third standing ovation of the night. Heidi declares she has a lady crush on Emily and Mel B concurs with the sentiment - Emily topped her last performance. But now it's all up to America to send her - and five other acts - to the finals.
And every vote counts.