Kelly Clarkson Steps in for Simon as ‘AGT: Season 15’ goes live!

The original American Idol winner, Kelly Clarkson, filled in for Simon as AGT went live for the first time this season! (Photo property of Vince Flores/

By: Jacob Elyachar,

For the first time this year, America’s Got Talent (AGT): Season 15 broadcasted live from Universal Studios Hollywood, and we were one judge short.

This past weekend, various news outlets reported that Simon Cowell sustained a back injury while test riding his electric bike. While Simon is recovering, the first American superstar that the Got Talent franchise creator discovered is substituting for him. E! News reported that Emmy and Grammy-winning vocalist and talk show host Kelly Clarkson joined Howie, Heidi, and Sofia at the judges’ desk for the first quarterfinals battle.

Tonight, 11 acts faced off to impress Kelly and the judges. Who soared? Which acts might need the Dunkin’ Save? Read on to find out!

MJs Big Blog previewed (and Terry confirmed) that throughout the quarterfinals, acts will be performing at various parts of the Universal Studios lot or their homes worldwide. Up first was Pork Chop Revue. I did not feel the love from Pork Chop Revue, and I believed that they took a spot away from the human acts. 

13-year-old Feng E performed via Taiwan. The Lego enthusiast strummed an incredible rendition of “Smoke on the Water, “Billionaire,” and “Seven Nation Army” on the ukulele. Howie proclaimed that Feng E was the “Hendrix of the Ukulele.” It was a fantastic performance! A-

Singer Shaquira McGrath was the first singer to take the Universal Studios Hollywood soundstage. She tackled Rascal Flatts’ “What Hurts the Most” for her chance to perform for the Season 15 semifinals. I love her passion, but between the heavy guitar backing and the pitchy moments, I was a little disappointed. 

Salsa dancers Simon and Maria got a private tour of the Universal Studios Hollywood soundstage. The duo performed at Mel’s Diner. Simon proved to be a future superstar. However, it took a while for Maria to warm up. Both have a bright future, but I am not sure if they can rally America to vote for them. C/C+ 

Dancer FrenchieBabyy was the fifth act of the evening. The contortionist/dancer performed to Kendrick Lamar and in all honesty, it was one of the worst live show performances that I have seen in show history! D/D+

Daredevils Bello and Anneliese Nock joined forces for AGT’s fifteenth anniversary season. I saw them perform on Britain’s Got Talent: The Champions and they blew me away. They took the Wheel of Death and combined it with fire. Sadly, Bello sustained an injury from rehearsal.  Her brother stepped up, but Annelise was the true star as she walked across a burning wheel! That was amazing! A

Sofia Vergara’s Golden Buzzer act, singer Roberta Battaglia, was the first Golden Buzzer act to perform! She sang Lauren Daigle’s “You Say,” and I got chills from the performance. What an incredible performance. A-

Comedian and Wendy Williams regular Michael Yo hit the stage. Michael began his set by revealing that he welcomed a new child. He stated that women were stronger than men in the delivery room! Michael made me smile, and I hope that the audience advances him to the next round. A

Double Dragon took their shot at the Season 15 quarterfinals. They had me laughing when they aired the pre-performance package. The duo teamed up and sang Jessie J, Ariana Grande, and Nicki Minaj’s “Bang Bang” plus DJ Snake’s “Taki Taki.” They surprised me tonight, and Double Dragon could be two of Season 15’s dark horses. B+ 

Sword swallower Brett Loudermilk became an instant fan favorite thanks to his hysterical interactions with Sofia Vergara during the Judges’ Auditions. Tonight, he roped Heidi Klum into joining him this evening. Brett asked Heidi to sign the six of diamonds, and Brett put it into a pack. He also brought Sofia back onto the stage. He asked Sofia to raise the crossbow to shoot him to find Heidi’s card. The routine was one of the best acts of the night! 

Archie Williams closed the first night of the AGT: Season 15 live show. He sang Stevie Wonder’s “Love’s in Need of Love Today.” I got chills when Archie first sang A cappella. Archie performed with such conviction that it broke my heart. A- 

Tomorrow night, the first set of Season 15 results are revealed! Plus, Season 14 champion Kodi Lee performs!

Copyright 2020 Jacob Elyachar