It’s been a few wild and wacky months since the amateur talent show contest, America’s Got Talent, began its search for the entertainment acts that often go beyond the ordinary.
In the run-up to its final top 48, this show gives viewers a peek into the sometimes insane citizens that occupy this country beside our saner selves. America’s Got Talent goes from city to city seeking talent with an edge that will entertain, amuse, beguile, frighten or astound us. This effort and the subsequent “talent” presented in the early stages becomes living proof that Americans have entirely too much time on their hands.
Once the many contenders are culled down to 48, the show begins a weekly live run that will present 12 acts per night to an elimination of eight. Four weeks of this talent arithmetic results in the current count as of this writing - 16 final contenders. They are, as expected, varied, wild, and woolly.
Let’s take a look at what we have and my predictions for the top three.
Anna Graceman: An 11-year-old piano-playing singer from Alaska. I predict she will definitely be in the top three.
Daniel Joseph Baker: Good singer. I don’t put him in the top three but definitely in the top five.
Landau Eugene Murphy Jr: A singer who's a real surprise. He looks like Stevie Wonder and sings like Frank Sinatra.
I don’t think Murphy will be in the top three as I’ve got three others more likely to win those spots. But I’ll not be a bit surprised if I’m wrong.
Fatally Unique: A dance team from Illinois, definitely with an edge, disciplined, talented. Not in the final top five as I see it.
Lys Agnes: An operatic singer, born of a show business mother. Beautiful voice, a top three, I predict.
Melissa Villasenor: Here’s a personable young woman, a terrific impressionist, writes all her own material, funny. I don’t see her in the top ten but I should think she’ll have a show business career with this exposure.
Miami All Stars: This is a dance troupe consisting of a large extended family. I think this act will be eliminated soon as Fatally Unique is a much better dance act. I don’t think either of these dance acts will make the final five.
POPLYFE: This is a singing group with all performers under 18. They are quite good and definitely have a career in front of them. While I predict that they might make the top five, they are not currently on my top five list.
Professor Splash: With the good professor here we get a little silly. He does a pretty amazing stunt, specifically diving from great heights into shallow depths of water. He’s not a top five performance, not even top ten. He is a great intro act so the AGT exposure will be to his benefit. His act does, of course, beg the question: Why?
Sandou Trio Russian Bar: Acrobat group from Utah, predict elimination very soon.
Silhouettes: A Colorado dance troupe. Very big, just too big almost to fit on most Las Vegas stages. But they are fun to watch. Not the stuff of the top five.
Smage Bros. Riding Shows: Wisconsin motorcycle stunt act. The stuff of state fairs, not the stuff of the top five in America’s Got Talent.
Steven Retchless: I never thought I’d see the day. This guy is—I do not make this up—a male pole dancer. This act is a bit too way out to win this beloved American amateur talent show. But he would make a great side act on a Las Vegas stage.
Team iLuminate: America’s Got Talent has mostly been won by singing acts, no mind all the weird acts involving huge dance troupes, diving into shallow water, and swallowing swords. Every once in a while something different captures America’s eye and this year it’s Team iLuminate. It’s difficult to describe this act, which includes advanced light technology and a dance/acrobat type of act. Video below because you've got to see it.
Zuma Zuma: This is an act of amazing acrobats but not the top five as I predict. They’d be great as one of a circus three ring event.
So there you have it. Tune in and watch this very talented, ambitious, much-practiced line-up of acts try to win the million dollar prize and a Las Vegas act offered as prize in America’s Got Talent. We’ll be keeping an eye on it at this end so check back.
While I predict the top three acts will be Anna Graceman, Lys Agnes, and Team iLuminate, I reserve the right to change my mind should conditions and situations require.
America’s Got Talent on NBC, Tuesday and Wednesday nights at 9p/8c.