AGT: Season 18 Auditions Enters Week 2

Howie, Heidi, Terry, Sofia, and Simon pose together during a taping of AGT: Season 18 (Photo property of NBC)

Howie, Heidi, Terry, Sofia, and Simon pose together during a taping of AGT: Season 18 (Photo property of NBC)

By: Jacob Elyachar,

America’s Got Talent (AGT) began its eighteenth season in an historic way. For the first time in show history, the audience had the chance to award the Golden Buzzer to a deserving act! They awarded it to the South African choir Mzansi Youth Choir, who transformed the beloved Nightbirde’s “It’s Ok” into a powerful anthem.

Tonight, a new set of hopefuls hoped to receive three (or four) Yeses to advance to the AGT: Season 18 Live Shows. Which acts impressed the judges (Simon Cowell, Sofia Vergara, Howie Mandel, and Heidi Klum)? Did anyone get buzzed? Was another Golden Buzzer awarded tonight? Read on to find out!

Dancer Christian “Lambros” Garcia had the opportunity to briefly mingle with Heidi and Simon backstage before his audition, which kicked off the night. I loved Lambros’ sparkly jacket and his energy. He reminded me of watching Derek Hough, Mark Ballas, Misha Gabriel, and Travis Wall during the early stages of their careers. He brought the entire Pasadena Civic Center to its feet, and Lambros should not be intimidated for being a male dancer. He received the first set of 4,000 “Yeses” of the evening.

Sainted Trap Choir is a 26-member ensemble from Charlotte, North Carolina. The group wanted to audition for AGT, as it has helped put recording artists on the map. They gave me the first chills of the evening, and I loved their concept of blending rap and EDM. They were entertaining, and I would pay money to see them in Vegas. Howie called it “young,” “exciting,” and they could perform at Coachella. Sofia called it one of her favorite auditions of the season. They received the second set of 4,000 “Yeses” and a post-performing standing ovation from Simon, Heidi, and Howie. 

The Ramandhani Brothers ran into their favorite judge, Simon, backstage before their performance. Their dream was to headline AGT’s Las Vegas show. I have been a massive fan of this duo since they auditioned and nearly won Australia’s Got Talent: Season 10. The judges waved at the audience as the crew set up the brothers’ act. My jaw dropped as the brothers performed their death-defying balancing stunts. I genuinely believe that the Ramandhani Brothers could win this season. 

Award-winning husband caller Virginia Stone brought her Iowa State Fair work to AGT, which both Heidi and Simon did not appreciate her talent by buzzing her. She received four “No’s” from the judges! 

All-female dance group Avantgardey traveled from Osaka, Japan, to audition for AGT. The group performed a fantastic routine from start to finish, and I loved their choreography and the superb presentation. Avantgardey earned a standing ovation from Howie, Heidi, and Sofia, while Simon called their audition: “GENIUS!” The ladies received four “Yeses” from the judges!

Acts traveled across the world to perform on AGT. The 17-year-old singer and pianist Putri Ariani traveled from Indonesia for the chance to win the show’s signature prize of $1 million and to headline Las Vegas, plus attend Julliard. She delivered a spectacular performance of an original song, and Simon rushed to the stage when she finished and asked her to sing another song, and she had one of the best renditions of “Sorry Seems to Be the Hardest Word” I had ever heard. Once the Got Talent creator asked for the second song, she would get the Golden Buzzer. My gut was correct, and Simon gave her the Golden Buzzer. I feel she will be Simon’s best Golden Buzzer act since he joined the Judges’ Desk in 2016! 

Britain’s Got Talent fans got a blast from the past when Mandy Muden walked across the stage. The comedian and magician was a semifinalist during BGT in 2018. Mandy walked toward the judges and had them pick out letters and the book. I loved her act from start to finish and am glad she found her way to AGT. Howie declared his fan card, and Simon “really liked” her. Mandy received four Yeses (and a standing ovation) for her efforts. 

I was bored by 6-year-old Zoe Erianna Cui. I felt like I was at a TED Talk for elementary and preschool students. Sorry, Zoe, but I would buzz her. Sadly, the judges disagreed with me. Simon called her “fearless,” and Sofia added that she was one of her favorite acts. Zoe’s dad escorted her off the stage after earning four “Yeses.”

The AGT crew dozens of coconuts for retired great-grandfather Muhamed Kahrimanovic. Terry revealed that Muhamed would attempt to break his Guinness World Record of smashing the most coconuts in 60 seconds. As the coconut water spilled across the stage, the audience cheered. Sadly, he could not break his record, and Simon pressed his buzzer. 

Last season, Chapel Hart and Drake Milligan broke the door down for country music performers to audition for AGT. Mitch Rossell hoped to follow in their footsteps. He and his father bonded over country music, and despite growing up poor, Mitch’s father wanted him to pursue it. But Mitch was too interested in sports. Sadly, Mitch’s father passed away when he was 10 in a “freak accident.” After graduating high school, Mitch wanted to reconnect with his father through music. Mitch hoped to reach his potential by auditioning for AGT. His original autobiographical song, “Son,” gave me chills, and Mitch’s vocals were superb. Howie, Sofia, and Simon joined in the standing ovation. Howie called “Son” – simple brilliance and predicted that the song would hit the top of country music downloads. Simon declared it a “brilliant” and a great audition. Mitch received four “Yeses” from the judges! 

Next week, the AGT: Season 18 Auditions continue! 

Click here to learn about Jake’s Take’s Top 20 Favorite AGT Auditions of All-Time! 

Copyright 2020 Jacob Elyachar