'AGT' Season 17: Meet the 54 contestants set to perform at ‘America’s Got Talent’ Live Shows
With only one week until the first live show of Season 17 of 'America's Got Talent,' the judges — led by reality maestro Simon Cowell — have decided to spice things up a little. The talent show's 2022 season has changed its crucial live events to eliminate the traditional pattern of Quarter-Finals followed by Semi-Finals.
This year, 138 performances earned a "yes" from the judges, and the prospect of reducing that number to just 36 was just impossible for Simon. Here comes Tuesday's first surprise: Instead of sending 36 acts to the live events, the judges will send 55. Even that would be "tough" for Simon, who "absolutely cannot believe the talent this year." At the time, the only confirmed artists were this season's Golden Buzzer winners: singer Sara James, dancing ensemble Mayyas, vocalist Madison Taylor Baez, singer-songwriter Lily Meola, vocal trio Chapel Hart, and saxophonist Avery Dixon.
Following the conclusion of the auditions, the judges gathered at Simon's home — without Sofia Vergara, who sent along her precise, color-coded, and bedazzled notes — and successfully determined 54 of the 55 acts going live. That's when the second twist came into play. Unable to determine the last act, Simon proposed that the decision be left to the audience. The judges have selected four possible wild cards — danger act Auzzy Blood, comedian Jordan Conley, and singers Debbii Dawson and Ben Waites — for fans to vote for via social media or by visiting 'AGT's official website. The polls shut on Friday at 7 am ET.
To get to know the 54 artists participating in the live performances in 2022, go through our list from the 'America's Got Talent' Season 17 finalists below.
Social media: @acapopkids
The group, which included children aged 12 to 17, informed the judges that they would be playing an original song written by a former member, Nolan Gibbons. Three unanimous yes votes from the judges ensure that Agapop! Kids will return to enchant audiences in future episodes.
Social media: @aikocomedy
Aiko's setup for her comic performance was flawless. Her set went on to discuss her joy in achieving American citizenship and how it has given her a new perspective on the American entitlement myth. Aiko felt emotional when the crowd and judges clearly enjoyed her performance. Aiko received a unanimous verdict of four Yes votes from the judges to go to the next round.
Social media: @amanda_mammana
Amanda Mammana informed the judges about her speech impairment before auditioning for America's Got Talent. The 19-year-old Connecticut native then sang one of her own tunes. Mammana took up her acoustic guitar and began performing the self-reflective ballad. Amanda received a standing ovation from all of the judges and advanced to the next round.
Amazing Veranica and Her Incredible Friends
Talent: Dog Act
Social media: @amazingveranica
Veranica, 12, and her intelligent poodles performed stunts and dance routines to BTS's "Butter" under the stage name Amazing Veranica & Her Incredible Friends. Her father, Kanat Tchalabaev, trained her, and their family evidently loves animals, as they live with 27 horses, 3 camels, 3 ponies, 8 goats, 50 chickens, and 13 cats, in addition to the dogs.
Social media: @amoukanama224
Amoukanama received four yeses from the judges and advances to the competition's next stage. The event comprised acrobats from Guinea, an African country with ties to Belgium. According to the group's website, they are a "circus uniting Europe and Africa."
Social media: @aubreyburchellofficial
Aubrey Burchell wows the judges with her incredible voice in the last round of tryouts. Aubrey does a unique version of The Weeknd's hit "Call Out My Name." Aubrey begins to cry once she finishes singing because of the overwhelming response from the audience. Heidi Klum praised Aubrey for her "fantastic voice." Aubrey was dubbed a "genius" by Simon Cowell for her rendition of the song.
Social media: @avaswissmusic
Ava Swiss, eighteen, demonstrated both skill and bravery with her magnificent version of Lauren Daigle's "Remember." Swiss' singing abilities and stage presence were more than enough to leave an impact. Swiss' appearance was a huge success even before she sang a single note.
Terry Crews’ Golden Buzzer
Social media: @averydixononsax
The season premiere of AGT this year began with a bang, with presenter Terry Crews awarding saxophonist Avery Dixon the first golden buzzer of the season. Aside from his golden buzzer on AGT, Avery has received a number of music prizes. In 2018, he was named Musician of the Year by the Tommie Smith Youth Initiative. He has also earned the Gospel Choice Awards and the VSA International Young Soloists Award.
Talent: Tap Dancer
Social media: @bayley_taps
AGT has seen a wide range of difficult performances, but this tap dance routine by a man from New Zealand wowed both the judges and the audience. He receives four yeses from the judges and advances to the competition's next stage.
Talent: Comedic Singer
Social media: @benlapidusmusic
With his song on parmesan cheese, Ben Lapidus won over the crowd. He did, in fact, move from four red buzzers to three "yes" votes. The musician shares amusing songs on social media platforms such as TikTok, where he has over 80,000 fans.
Blade 2 Blade
Social media: @tyronblade
Fans were concerned when Blade 2 Blade, a knife-throwing duo, performed an outstanding audition with Simon Cowell at the heart of the performance. Simon, who is at the core of the performance, admits how much it means to them to advance in the competition. Simon, like the other three judges, says "yes" to the performance, and the couple progresses to the competition's next round.
Social media: @celiamunoz_artist_
Celia Munoz, a ventriloquist, dazzled the judges and the live audience with her auditions. She began her performance by demonstrating how a ventriloquist prepares for the day, and then continued to demonstrate her gift - she sang as if the voice was coming from a radio box while flossing, putting on lipstick, and even drinking water at the end.
Group Golden Buzzer
Talent: Singing Trio
Social media: @chapelhartband
Chapel Hart, a Mississippi-raised country trio, wowed America's Got Talent judges with their audition, performing the original song "You Can Have Him, Jolene," a contemporary twist on the Dolly Parton classic "Jolene," which reached No. 1 in 1974. Their tight harmonies, unique lyrics, and fascinating characters immediately won over the judges, prompting them to award the quartet the "Golden Buzzer," only the second time in AGT history that the judges have decided to recognize an act in such a large way.
Talent: Hockey Tricksters
Social media: @clinetwins
The Cline Twins wow the judges with their incredible hockey puck skills. The twins receive four yeses from the judges and advance to the next stage of the competition. Their incredible performance with hockey sticks was the culmination of nearly ten years of effort. The twins received unanimous approval from the judges.
Social media: @donmcmillancomedy
Don McMillan is a unique and unusual elderly comic who presents his routines using graphs, charts, and indexes. He has been performing his own brand of powerpoint-driven comedy routines for about 20 years and is still going strong. Executive producer Simon voted "No," but the other three judges voted "Yes," moving him to the next round.
Social media: @drakemilligan
Drake Milligan's enthusiastic performance easily won over the AGT judges. Unsurprisingly, AGT viewers were equally enthralled with the country music singer from Fort Worth, Texas, who was quickly called a breakthrough sensation on the NBC singing competition show.
Social media: @duorings
Flora and Nico from Buenos Aires, Argentina, stunned the judges and audience with their aerial acrobatic routine. Their commitment to their craft got them three yeses. Fans were equally thrilled by their performance.
Social media: @thefreckledzelda
Every single listener was blown away by Freckled Zelda's heartfelt performance of Disney's "Colors of the Wind." That evening, she received a "yes" from all four judges, advancing her to the next stage of the competition.
Talent: Dance Duo
Social media: @funkanometry_
The team, made up of Nanaimo's Jacksun Fryer and Duncan's Carlow Rush, routinely go viral through their social media posts, coupling their highly imaginative dance skills to famous and classic music. Their performance to a mashup of Earth, Wind & Fire's "September" and Rick James' "Superfreak," which aired in early June, wowed the judges and earned them a berth in the next round.
Talent: Martial Artists
Social media: @fusionjapan
The performance, which combines hip-hop dance and aerial acrobatics, had the crowd on their feet — even host Terry Crews called it "one of the best things I've seen in my life!" Following Heidi's "big fat yes," the three other judges lend their support to Fusion Japan's entry into the competition.
Social media: @thatyellaharper
Harper caught the judges off since her calm manner in her introduction was surprising compared to the loud rasping cries of her voice once she started singing. Harper will return in a future show after receiving four yes votes from the judges to put her heavy-metal spin on another song.
Social media: @haydenkristal
Hayden Kristal is a deaf comedian who used a sign language interpreter to speak with the judges. The judges praised her performance and said it was unique because she turned a traumatic situation into a hilarious comedy.
Social media: @puppetjack_
He performed a few novel variations on the classic ventriloquist performance. He was hilarious, and he had some pretty excellent stuff to back him up. Over the years, he's already won over the crowd and proven that he's better than a lot of comparable acts.
Social media: @jannick_magic
It was the first time a magician performed such a routine with rhythmic steps. He finished his performance, and the rest was up to the judges. “Oh my god Jannick, I was never expecting that,” Simon said. The unexpected aspect was the most popular portion of the act, and Jannick received four yes votes from the judges.
Jojo and Bri
Talent: Singing Duo
Social media: @joseph.b.clarke
Jojo and Bri are uncle and niece duo that stunned the world with their incredible vocal abilities. They sang the harmonizing portions in a distinctive manner. Simon highlighted it as one of his favorite auditions because it had "joy and magic." They eventually received all four yes votes and advanced to the next round.
Social media: @kristenncruz
When the 19-year-old vocalist finished her rendition of "I See Red" by Everybody Loves An Outlaw, she received a standing ovation from both the crowd and the judges. She had over 2 million TikTok followers prior to the performance. Her TikTok channel presently has over 4 million followers.
Social media: @kristysellars
Kristy has participated in several shows in the Got Talent franchise, including AGT. In 2019, she competed in Season 9 of Australia's Got Talent, which she won. She received a standing ovation from all four judges and advanced to the next round.
Social media: @lacelarrabee
Lace Larrabee, an Atlanta-based stand-up comedian, didn't allow Sofia Vergara's crosstalk to get in the way of her comic flow during her audition for America's Got Talent 2022. This former beauty queen received four yeses!
Social media: @lee_collinson
During the competition, British singer Lee Collinson surprised the judges of America's Got Talent with his powerful voice. Collinson got a standing ovation from all four judges and the majority of the crowd after his performance. Collinson's mother in the United Kingdom was then phoned by the judges to notify her that her son had received a "yes" from each of them, moving him to the next stage.
Heidi Klum’s Golden Buzzer
Social media: @lilymeola
Lily's outstanding performance on America's Got Talent not only stunned the judges but also impacted and touched the studio crowd to such a degree that Heidi Klum went up and chose to give Meola her golden buzzer, which means she now has a solid berth on the live broadcasts.
Talent: Dance Group
Social media: @mplusplus_official
There aren't many faults to say about this next dancing ensemble. The judges and audience were blown away by their wonderful dance and light choreography. The group received four yeses from the judges, allowing them to proceed.
Madison Taylor Baez (Maddie)
Howie Mandel’s Golden Buzzer
Social media: @madisonbaezmusic
Unbeknownst to the judges, Madison Baez Taylor, 11, was seated in the crowd by the show's producers. Madison, an AGT fan since she was four years old, would often try to sing during the commercial breaks. Finally, her fantasy came true—in the year she came to audition, no less. Mandel presented Madison with the Golden Buzzer.
Social media: @maxostler_
Max Ostler, 18, traveled all the way from Australia to audition with hopes of becoming one of the world's finest dancers. After witnessing little Max's jaw-dropping dancing abilities, Simon Cowell remarked that if his kid could dance as well as Max, he would be overjoyed.
Sofia Vergara’s Golden Buzzer
Talent: Dance Group
Social media: @mayyasofficial
Mayyas is a group of 26 young women from Lebanon who, along with their founder Nadim Cherfan, bring hypnotic, never-before-seen choreography. It even earned them a Golden Buzzer from Sofia Vergara on America's Got Talent. The dancers completely wowed the judges.
Talent: Opera Singer
Social media: @merissaria
Merissa Beddows, a New York soprano, received a standing ovation on America's Got Talent for her flawless act, which included impressions of Stevie Nicks, Snow White, and others. Beddows flawlessly shifted from performing the song in her own voice to a pitch-perfect rendition of the first name Klum called out: Ariana Grande. In fact, she so perfectly captured Grande's characteristic lilting voice that Cowell couldn't help but chuckle at his own doubts.
Talent: Rapping Magician
Social media: @mervant
The huge surprise comes when Vera begins to perform, incorporating rap into the mix, and spitting bars while performing some mind-boggling card tricks. The act had the audience applauding and jumping along with the music right away, even winning over the judges with references to them. Vera receives a standing ovation from the crowd and the majority of the judges as he concludes, indicating that he's going somewhere in the competition.
Talent: Artificial Intelligence Experts
Social media: @metaphysic.ai
No talent is off-limits when it comes to 'AGT.' While it is simpler to highlight abilities such as singing and dancing, if you can find a method to express less traditional talents, the stage is all yours! MetaPhysic Synthetic Media received four yeses.
Talent: One-Woman Band
Social media: @miamorrismusic
Mia Morris, a 17-year-old Brentwood High School student, presented her original song "Gone My Way," which required her to play guitar, bass guitar, drums, piano, and vocal all at once due to a loop pedal and headset microphone. Her audition performance lasted just under two minutes, but she received a standing ovation from the audience and a unanimous "yes" vote from the judges, with Judge Simon Cowell describing her performance as "brilliant."
Mike E Winfield
Social media: @mikeewinfield
Mike Winfield, an actor, and comedian auditioned for Season 17 and impressed the judges and audience with his comic timing and comedy. Many of the things he discusses on stage are inspired by his experiences during the epidemic. Katt Williams, Chris Rock, Patrice O'Neal, and Martin Lawrence are among the comedians who have influenced celebrities.
Social media: @thatsmrpants
The NBC talent show's judges were so thrilled with the New York-based comedian's stand-up routine that they unanimously gave him a standing ovation following his performance. Mr Pants stood out in the throng, dressed in a big pantsuit with his head popping out the zipper. The judges couldn't get enough of his humorous set and be eager to see what he had in store for the following round.
Social media: @nicolasribsmagicien
Magician Nicolas Ribs performed on the AGT stage, captivating both the judges and the live audience. Nicolas Ribs blended new magic methods with old magic talents to create an awe-inspiring show. He just utilized a deck of cards in the audition, which he made appear and disappear during his performance.
Social media: @yenivatov
Oleksandr Yenivatov, a Ukrainian, entered circus training at the age of 11 and discovered his calling as a contortionist. He rapidly became a professional and attained a very high technical level, but he was continuously striving to improve. Oleksandr's act blends contortion and a lovely narrative.
Social media: @playerschoir
The choir consists of past and present NFL players who perform gospel music. They began as a group of 40 when they debuted in 2008, and have expanded since then. Last year's Super Bowl Gospel featured the choir alongside modern R&B singer-songwriter Erica Campbell.
Simon Cowell’s Golden Buzzer
Social media: @sara_james_music
Sara James, a singer, auditioned for Season 17 and wowed the judges and live audience with her musicianship, receiving Simon Cowell's golden buzzer. . She was one of several contenders that put their best foot forward after gaining clearance from the judges to advance in the competition.
Talent: Yo-Yo Performer
Social media: @shutakada_yoyo
Shu Takada holds six World Yo-Yo Championship championships. Dance and acrobatics are also part of his style. He is a well-known Japanese 2A player and six-time World 2A Yo-Yo Champion known for his unusual dance moves and acrobatic antics. During his audition for Season 17, Shu drew a lot of attention and applause from the audience.
Stefanny and Yeeremy
Social media: @stefannym
Stefanny and Yeeremy approached the stage and performed a fantastic salsa routine that had Sofia on her feet dancing. Fans enjoyed their performance, so it was no surprise that they received three yeses.
The Brown Brothers
Social media: @gabeandnatebrown
Gabe and Nate Brown of Arizona advanced to the next live rounds of America's Got Talent after receiving a yes from all four judges on their audition. The brothers have been producing music together since they were children and conducted musical performances based on impressions on the show.
The Lazy Generation
Talent: Comedic Danger Act
Social media: @thelazygenerationuk
The group is from London, England, and judge Howie Mandel referred to them as “the English version of Jackass.” Their performance began with the majority of the members of the group lying on the stage while another attempted to leap over them. The judges gave the Lazy Generation three "yes" votes, while Vergara voted "no."
The Pack Drumline
Social media: @thepackdrumline
The drumming ensemble, founded by Perry Donta'e, had a bunch of exceptional performers who are not only drummers but also dancers. What began as an after-school program for at-risk youngsters swiftly evolved into a famous touring ensemble portraying WNBA winners such as the Chicago Sky!
Talent: Boy Band
Social media: @travis_japan_official
The judges and live audience were thrilled by the dancing group's coordinated routines and different personalities. The AGT J-pop group also competed in the World of Dance Championship Series Orange County 2022, finishing third in the Team Division and winning Best Costume and Crowd Favorite. Their graphics, costumes, and acrobatics wowed the crowd.
Urbancrew (Flyers of the South)
Social media: @urbancrew_official_ig_ph
Urban Crew provided much more than a high-energy dancing routine. They performed acrobatic feats with nothing but their own abilities and aptitude. The trio previously appeared on Season 2 of 'Asia's Got Talent,' where they advanced to the semi-finals.
Social media: @wynstarks
One of this year's most remarkable auditions came from musician Wyn Starks, who moved the judges with his original song "Who I Am." Last year, the vocalist published his debut album. Wyn released an official music video for "Who I Am" before his AGT audition aired.
Talent: Girl Group
Social media: @xomgpop
The larger-than-life ensemble showcased their ability by performing their debut hit, "Candy Hearts." The audience applauded and cheered when XOMG POP! performed. The ensemble even garnered compliments from judge Simon Cowell, who is notorious for giving applicants harsh love.
Social media: @hojin_yu
Yu's ritual is plucking feathers from apparently nowhere, altering them, shrinking, expanding, and disappearing them until they are minute fluttering shreds. The presentation is lovely and sophisticated. It's fascinating to see!
Before the lives begin, America will select the 55th act.