'America's Got Talent' Season 15: Youngsters perform to an empty auditorium, fans are impressed by their energy
Heidi Klum remained absent owing to her being quarantined, but Eric Stonestreet made sure to fill the void with his brand of humor
The latest episode of 'America's Got Talent' once again saw a diverse range of young musicians with incredible talent who dominated the stage despite having to play to an empty auditorium.
Jacob Velazquez, a 12-year-old piano player, was the first musical act of the night. Brandishing a vision board that showed him on the AGT stage, Jacob revealed that he has Pervasive Developmental Disorder-Not Otherwise Specified or PDD-NOS, and despite his struggles, he hoped to be an inspiration to America and demonstrate that hard work could help anyone make their dreams come true.
Viewers already adored Jacob, with one tweeting "Vision boards rock!" and another saying, "His poster board is so cute." And they couldn't help but be moved by his speech. One tweet read, "Jacob -- you need to become a future leader of the world" and another stated, "Love seeing young kids with great passions. Even if you have a #Disability doesn't mean you are less than anyone else. Each of us are unique in our own way," while others, commenting on Jacob's experiences with being bullied, assuringly said, "Having a few friends is better than none." And one shared, "I’m watching #AGT Jacob is mature beyond his years. Cute and optimistic. I love him. Very talented."
Performing an original song on the piano, Jacob began playing a stunning melody, with a mysterious red curtain behind him. And everyone, including Simon Cowell, couldn't help but wonder: "What is behind the Curtain?" And we soon found out it was a drum kit: it turned out Jacod was just as good of a drummer as he was a pianist.
"Holy smokes, @JacobsPiano! That was an outstanding @AGT audition! I got chills! Well done!" tweeted one viewer, and another said, "You definitely have more friends than you know especially after tonight." One shared, "I'm not crying you are / You go kid," another said, "Boythoven. The next generation begins!" one tweet read, "@JacobsPiano That drummer omg. yes a thousand times Amazing!!" and another stated, "Jacob can please both the drums and the piano!!! Wow this kid is both inspiring and talented!! I can't wait to see what he does next."
The Brothers Gage, an act with two musicians went up next, electing to play an original harmonica track over the various other musical gifts they possess. Armed with an array of harmonicas, the young artists managed to draw a standing ovation from the judges owing to everything from their self-produced and choreography to their high likeability.
"Harmonica players who are so young it's great seeing some young talent interested in this art form still," tweeted one viewer, while another said, "I have to say these brothers are talented with the harmonica!" adding, "Idk if it will make it to the top though." One viewer quipped, "I guess y'all need to get closer to appreciate harmonicas," as the brothers came down from the stage and played next to the judges. One viewer shared, "Harmonica is one of the MOST difficult instruments to learn... The GAGE brothers are exceptional," while one pointed out, "Watching this first episode without any audience the way that all of these contestants are performing you wouldn't know it was missing," highlighting how good the acts this episode were at dominating the stage with their presence.
Cellist Elijah was up next, playing a stunning rendition of 'My Favorite Things' mashed up with Ariana Grande's '7 Rings' and demonstrating a skill well beyond his young years. As one viewer noted, "Not sure if he's a golden buzzer act but he's getting through and honestly he's jsut really happy to be here," because regardless of whether he's a fan-favorite or not, his infectious joy stemming from simply being on the AGT stage was hard to ignore.
"YOOOOOOO CELLO WHAT," tweeted one evidently surprised viewer, while another shared, "This kid just played 7 rings on the cello. This the type of talent I love to see." Not everyone was a fan of the backing track, however, including Simon Cowell. One viewer stated, "I agree on Simon on this one, I like him but the backing track lol." But mostly, viewers were impressed with Elijah's talent, tweeting, "Yellow shirt Cello kid on @AGT was so legit. Incredible talent. Keep rocking!"
Kenadi Dodds was up next. The young singer and guitarist shared that her biggest supporter was her younger sister, who, dealing with a visual impairment, desired to see her sister on a stage before she could no longer see. Singing an original titled 'One Way Ticket to Tennessee', which Kenadi stated was inspired by her parents supporting her dreams of being a country singer, Kenadi revealed herself to be both a powerful singer as well as a gifted songwriter.
"@kenadidodds is making me feel so emotional!! SHE IS SO GOOD AND I CANT STAND IT!!!!" tweeted one viewer, another shared, "Beautiful! This might be my favorite act of the night," and one stated, "This girl has my vote today and forever. AMAZING TALENT." One viewer said, "Ok Jewel sure maybe but Janis Joplin is coming out from her too wow," another quipped, "U know Simon wants to sign her and mold her to be the next Taylor Swift," and one even predicted, "This girl is gonna get Howie's golden buzzer she’s like the country Grace Vanderwaal." She didn't quite reach golden buzzer levels, but she did get four yeses.
With such a wide array of musical talent, there's certainly a little something for everyone this season, but it'll be a tough call for viewers to decide which one is their favorite.