Judge cuts continued on the latest episode of America’s Got Talent. The episode saw popular acts from the audition phase return with the hopes of impressing the judges and the audience, and making it through to the season 14 live rounds.
There were seven performers who were selected to advance the live finals: Voices of Service, Eric Chien, Marina Mazepa, Charlotte Summers, Jackie Fabulous and Benicio Bryant. The seventh performer was Emanne Beasha, who wowed the audience with her singing talents and earned a Golden Buzzer from guest judge Jay Leno.
Read on for a recap of judge cuts night 4:
8:05 – The first act of the night is Dominguez Poodles. They are a family act who showcase their dogs as they perform different acrobatic tricks. Some of the tricks include jumping through hoops, leaping over hurdles and jumping rope. Howie Mandel was generally leery in his comments, but he felt that they didn’t bring anything new to the table and voiced concern about whether or not they will be able to “step up” their game moving forward. Julianne Hough is slightly more positive, saying that she found the busy act to be a “beautiful hurricane.”
8:15 – DM Nation is up next. Simon Cowell urges to bring “more personality” to the stage, and the dance group respond by donning white and black tuxedo costumes during their act. Jay Leno voiced his enthusiasm after they finished, saying that they exemplified a “kick your butt” attitude,” and Hough agreed, but Cowell was lukewarm. He felt that they failed to heed his advice, and that they continue to come off “cold” despite their dancing talent.
8:20 – Ben Trigger is best known for accidentally hitting the golden buzzer during his first performance, but here, he takes a more “serious” approach. He sings an operatic solo before switching gears and dancing a jig to the song “Proud Mary.” In a tongue-in-cheek moment, Trigger does a Vegas showgirl strut to the judge’s table and slams down the golden buzzer a second time. Howie and the rest of the judges crack a few jokes, but none of them seem as pleased with Trigger’s antics as they did the first time around.
8:30 – Nicholas Connors stepped up and gave a solid rendition of “Ain’t Nobody,” but the judges were fairly ho-hum about the performance. Jordan Ravi fared much better than his singer-songwriter counterpart, as he belted out a seductive cover of “High Hopes.” Cowell, who was previously very critical of Ravi, said that he improved drastically since his first performance, and Leno agreed.
8:35 – Benicio Bryant is next up, and he gives the performance of the night so far. He debuts the original track “Here Goes Nothing,” and it floors the audience and the judges alike. Leno praised the young singer for his vocal command and said that he makes the audience feel like they’re looking “directly into his heart.” Cowell was similarly positive, saying that he loved Bryant’s audition more than his first because it had a more raw aesthetic. Bryant seems like a lock for the next round.
8:45 – The next performer to take the stage is Marina Mazepa. The contortionist ups the ante from her previous audition and ties herself to a pole during her act. Her daredevil gambit paid off, as the judges were uniformly impressed. Leno praised her act as being a piece of “art” and that Mazepa’s instincts were “wonderfully creative.” Hough doubled down on Leno’s positive stance, calling the act “innovative.”
8:50 – Charlotte Summers provides another highlight with her impassioned cover of “You Don’t Own Me.” The teenager’s gravitas led Gabrielle Union to get on her feet halfway through the performance, and Leno admitted that he was blown away. The biggest compliment came from Cowell, however, who said that acts like Summers are the reason other contestants are nervous.
8:55 – Callie Day was one of the most anticipated performers heading into tonight. Her performance of “Up to the Mountain” is more restrained than some may have expected, but it was still powerful and immaculately delivered. Leno was so enamored with Day’s talent that he yelled at her and asked her to get rid of the piano, because he felt that she didn’t need any other instruments on stage.
9:00 – Two different magical acts take the stage, but neither leave much of an impression. Zack and Stan‘s performance was shortened to a brief clip before a commercial break, as was SOS, who’s telepathic performance did little for the judges and Union in particular.
9:05 – Kara with a K comes out next. Her act gets off to an awkward start, given that she yells at the judges, and she never really manages to find solid footing after that. Her comedy strip tease causes Cowell to shake his head, and Leno said her jokes weren’t very funny. To make matters worse, Kara gets defensive and tries to joke back with Leno. It doesn’t work. Don’t expect to see Kara take the stage again.
9:15 – Emanne Beasha steps onto the stage and warns the judges that she chose the hardest song she could find to sing. Despite being only ten years old, she nails the performance, and Leno is so taken aback that he hits the Golden Buzzer! Beasha gets a free pass to the live finals and she couldn’t be happier.
9:25 – Eric Chien is a magician who’s act consists of making coins disappear and reappear. Most of the panel is impressed, but Cowell is less so, and tells Chien that if he wants to become a notable Las Vegas act, he’s going to have to think bigger and come up with something more unique.
9:35 – Quartet Voices of Services are next up, and they sing a song that urges people to help those dealing with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. Their performance drew a round of applause from the audience, and Leno praised their authenticity. Like he did with Eric Chien, however, Cowell advises them to think of something bigger if they want to be stars.
9:45 – Jonathan Burns comes out to perform a series of “strange and unusual tricks.” He used Terry Crews as a sidekick in an attempt at comedy, but it doesn’t work, and Cowell and Mandel hit the red buzzers. Needless to say, Burns won’t be coming back for another round.
9:55 – Jackie Fabulous is a stand-up comedian who’s mother is in the audience. She jokes about moving around a lot as a kid, and the differences between people on the East and West coasts. While Cowell was indifferent, Mandel, Union and Leno all backed Fabulous, and said that she has what it takes to succeed. Jackie ends the episode on a high note.
10:00 – The acts who got eliminated tonight were Dominguez Poodles, Callie Day, DM Nation, Ben Trigger, Nicholas Connors, Jordan Ravi, Zack and Stan, SOS, Kara with a K, and Jonathan Burns.