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The 10 Best Performances of America’s Got Talent Season 12

Before I start this, I wanted to give a quick shout-out to the Las Vegas Victims’ Fund GoFundMe campaign. Any massacre is horrific of course but especially with the connection AGT has with the city I thought it’d be good to share.

I’ve thought a lot about what to do with this blog during the off-season. I know I don’t want it to go completely dormant like last year, so I’m going to try to post at least twice per month. One post will be a roundup of any notable alumni updates and the other will vary a bit. For this month I recently grabbed a copy of Mandy Harvey’s book “Sensing the Rhythm” which was released last week, so I’ll get a review of that up once I’ve finished reading it!

For now, let’s get to the top 10 list! Note that I didn’t allow myself to include multiple performances from the same act so I wouldn’t run out of things to say. 😛

10. Preacher Lawson Proves Himself to be a “Driving” Force in the Competition (Auditions)

While I’ve made it clear I didn’t agree with some of the representation of certain act genres we had in the Season 12 live shows, I think Preacher Lawson was definitely the best comedian of all those we saw by miles, so if we could only have one make it through, I’m glad it was him. Most of his performances were on a similar level for me – all around solid, with a couple laugh-out-loud jokes and good personality to make the lesser material palatable. After re-watching each of them, I still think his best performance was his very first audition.

He started by easing into the jokes by answering each question from the judges with a hint of humor, which made a nice segue into the set itself. As the season went on, Preacher slowly began incorporating more and more of his “over-the-top” bits into his performances, culminating in one long joke in the Finals that lasted about 30 seconds (you know the one :P). But here, we don’t get it until late in the act, giving us time to warm up to his style of humor before taking it to the next level with the grandma impression.

This performance was so good that even though it was one of the very first acts shown in the season premiere, it stuck out in my mind through the following weeks of auditions, and by the time we got to Preacher’s next set in the third episode of the Judge Cuts round, I was on the edge of my seat in anticipation to see what he would bring us next.

9. Billy & Emily England Go for a Spin, Game of Thrones-style (Semi-Finals)

Like most danger performers who’ve gone on AGT, Billy & Emily England were certainly one of the more controversial acts of Season 12. Some people loved them, others feared them, and a few thought their act was more suited to a “redneck family reunion” than a primetime TV talent show (Facebook’s words, not mine).

I was concerned early on that the “wow” factor of the extreme roller-skating would wear off a little too quickly, but in a surprise result (at least to me) they avoided Quarter-Finals Dunkin’ Save territory and spun on straight to the Semis. By the time their second live show rolled around, not only had there been many a comment stating they needed to “step it up” but also many questioning their relationship as siblings. I don’t know if the concept for their Semi-Finals performance was an intentional nod to the speculation of incest, but either way, the Game of Thrones-esque set-up added an extra sense of intensity to the act.

Of course, the theme wasn’t the only thing that made this performance epic; Billy and Emily started out somewhat slow, but that helped them build tension and suspense as they kept adding to the danger with each passing trick. They even maintained strong showmanship whenever they had to pause the actual spinning to maintain their balance. It all culminated in one final daring move we hadn’t seen from them in any of their previous AGT showings; Billy tossing Emily off the platform, ending as the victor of the storyline.

8. Sara & Hero are “Walking on Sunshine” at the Beach (Semi-Finals)

Sara & Hero had kind of a rough start to the season, narrowly making it to the Judge Cuts round. But from there, they charmed the judges and viewers enough to make it all the way the 5th place without ever being on the Dunkin’ Save bubble! I really love Sara’s commitment to training dogs using positive reinforcement, and she managed to raise the bar with pretty much every AGT performance.

The Semi-Finals act is the one that I think worked the best. The beach theme was very well-suited to the “girl and her dogs” storyline and it had the biggest variety of tricks we hadn’t seen from them yet. The beginning with the CPR was arguably the best part since it was the only real “story” section of the performance, but the level of the tricks that followed made up for it. (The volleyball stuff was particularly impressive.) None of them went on for too long, and most of the transitions were smooth enough for Hero and Loki to keep up nicely. There were a couple of mistakes but none of the prevented the routine from progressing as it should (I really liked how Sara just kind of rolled with everything). I would have to say this was probably the most uplifting performance of the season, and it was no surprise for them to make the Finals as a result!

7. Colin Cloud Goes Undercover (Semi-Finals)

I feel like illusion-based acts are always at least a little controversial (“it’s not REAL magic”) but mentalism tends to stir up particularly heated debates. A lot of people are convinced there are plants in the audience or the judges are in on the trick (I highly doubt the latter is true, but I know of an instance or two when the host knew what was up). I know how quite a few of the tricks we’ve seen from this genre over the years are done, and there are a variety of different methods the performers have used. I know a lot of people like to make fun of Colin’s label as the “Real-Life Sherlock Holmes” but since the season ended a couple weeks ago I’ve looked up some videos of him online and the claims of forensic studies seem pretty legit and tied to a lot of his tricks. Granted, most of what he did beyond the Judge Cuts round incorporated less of that stuff, but it still helped me understand/appreciate some of his performances (ie. the Quarter-Finals one) more.

I actually almost selected Colin’s Judge Cuts act for his entry on the list, but I decided that while I did like the tricks in that one better, I think his Semi-Finals showing was stronger as an overall performance. Sometimes it’s not only what we’re seeing, but how it’s presented to us. While watching this on the night it aired I was disappointed at first; we’d seen a very similar illusion performed by Tom London earlier in the season, and that hadn’t boded well for his status in the competition. I was so confused. Why would a mentalist who’d shown he could perform all kinds of cool tricks chose to go down the route of doing one that didn’t even involve those skills? (Well, aside from the first bit with Howie’s phone unlock code.)

Just as I was about ready to give up on Colin, the flashback video started. While it didn’t change the essence of the trick, it added a whole new layer to the performance. The amount of effort put behind all those “clues” (especially in the burger place) was very impressive, and the thing with the board at the end was pretty funny (I’d been confused by the seemingly arbitrary “number of possibilities” since the video calling for tweet submissions was posted online a week prior). Suddenly, a disappointingly lackluster performance became one of my favorites of the entire season. Just goes to show that the delivery and presentation of an act can be equally as impactful as the material itself.

6. Merrick Hanna Dances to “I Built a Friend” (Auditions)

Real talk: the Season 12 premiere was probably one of the best AGT audition round episodes I’ve ever seen. Most of the really memorable auditions were shown in those two hours, and they made for a very strong start to the season. One of the acts in this episode that captivated me the most was Merrick Hanna.

I’d seen lots of animation dancing in the past, but rarely any that actually told a story. Merrick chose a great song to use; it wasn’t mainstream (so everyone would associate it with him) and was about a kind an his robot so the dancing really connected to the music well. His acting was also amazing and really sold the performance. In later rounds, we didn’t get this kind of rawness from Merrick (though he was still very good) but I’m glad we at least got to see it once on AGT.

5. Light Balance Stars a Party in the Dolby (Finals)

As the only Golden Buzzer act that didn’t involve singing, I think a lot of the dance and variety fans were really pulling for Light Balance to go far in the competition…and they did! They actually managed to beat all but two of the singing Golden Buzzers, not to mention every other act of the season!

We’ve seen several light-up dance crews over the years, but what I think made Light Balance special was their polished-ness and memorable characters, most noticeably the Abe Lincoln-esque fellow and the Wolfman. They frequently appeared in their performances and the Wolfman in particular gave way to some neat tricks (like the jail cell escape in this act).

The light-up dance acts can get old after awhile, but the trick is to incorporate different levels of movement, character, and tricks to them to keep things from getting stale. That’s exactly what Light Balance gave us this season, and it all culminated in this full-out dance party of a performance.

4. Diavolo Takes Us on a Journey Through Time and Space (Semi-Finals)

Diavolo is a great example of an act utilizing set pieces well without letting them take over the whole show. Their scenery is carefully selected to showcase what the dancers can do, and what I loved about this performance in particular was the variety of things they incorporated into it. They used several set pieces – each in a different way – and the transitions between each segment were seamless which made the whole act flow very naturally. I’m not entirely sure what the “story” of this performance was supposed to be, but I have a feeling it may have been purposefully vague in order to try to get the audience’s minds working to try to come up with their own unique interpretations.

I really don’t know what else to say about this. How does one even describe Diavolo? “Dance troupe” certainly doesn’t cover it, and neither does “acrobatics group”. I guess the best way to explain Diavolo in a nutshell would simply be “art”.

3. Bello Nock Conquerors the “Wheel of Death” (Quarter-Finals)

Bello Nock may be a seasoned professional at daredevil performances (let’s be real, a lot of the variety acts on AGT are) but that didn’t change the fear we all faced when he took a spin on the “Wheel of Death” for us in the Quarter-Finals.

When Sophie – who was at the live shows that week – first told me what Bello’s act was, I was kind of disappointed. It just didn’t seem very exciting. How could spinning on a giant wheel keep people entertained for three minutes? It just seemed like the awe factor would disappear very quickly. Luckily, Bello managed to create enough intrigue and suspense to keep us on our toes for the entire performance. He started by doing some fun tricks inside the wheel, then suddenly made things much more dramatic by climbing onto the outside of it and slowed things down, making it seem like he might fall off.

The tone change came at just the right time; as soon as the first segment was starting to wear out its welcome, a sudden shift in stakes brought the excitement back. Bello wasn’t just entertaining the audience anymore, but making them root for him. He built the tension at just the right pace and ended with a nail-biting but ultimately satisfying conclusion.

I really thought this performance played into the “fan-favorite Wildcard” storyline quite nicely, and was baffled it sent him packing. (I know some viewers have a disdain for danger acts, but remember, this was the same week that resulted in Billy & Emily making the top 5, so I’m still confused about Bello’s elimination.)

2. Mandy Harvey Semi-Finals: “Release Me” (Semi-Finals)

At first, Mandy’s AGT journey seemed oddly familiar…she came out with a ukulele at the end of the second episode, performed an original song, and received a Golden Buzzer. It felt like she was the second coming of Grace VanderWaal, only with a tragic backstory tacked on for good measure, which – fair or not – made me feel more weary than excited.

Her next showing in the Quarter-Finals was quite nice, but it was her Semi-Finals performance that really got me on board the Mandy train. Her first two songs were light, pretty, and overall pleasant, but in this performance, Mandy shed the sweetness (and the ukulele) and got raw. “Release Me” showed a much darker side of Mandy that we hadn’t yet seen, and there seemed to be so much weight behind every note she sang. Without the ukulele, her body language was much more expressive; the decision to sign the lyrics reminded us of her roadblock in life, but also was a way to use her body to express the sentiment behind the music, and her face was also much more expressive than we’d seen in her previous AGT showings.

Everything came together and made for a powerful performance that dramatically stood out from all the other solo singing acts in Season 12, and I really wish she’d saved this for the last week since her actual performance in the Finals felt like the wall that had been torn down in this one had been rebuilt to a degree.

1. Darci Lynne Farmer Helps Edna Doorknocker Serenade Simon (Semi-Finals)

Darci Lynne Farmer was one of the rare AGT acts that combined three very distinct talents, and I think her showing in the Semi-Finals was her best combination of her ventriloquism, comedy, and singing skills.

Right from when she opened the box, it was clear how dedicated Darci was to making Edna seem like a separate being from herself. The speaking voice was clearly distinct from her own, and when it came time for the song she not only had to nail the complexities of the vocal performance (which involved belting) but had to do it in the character’s voice, which she nailed.

Darci’s comedic chops were as strong as ever, not only in the delivery of the material (especially the hilarious meta AGT references) but also in her facial expressions, even when she was doing the ventriloquism. The best example of this was when she was walking over to Simon while singing. Her voice as Edna was passionate, but her own facial expression was clearly reluctant. It takes a lot of skill for someone to perform one way with their voice and the opposite way with their face, and she had it down pat.

I’ve seen a lot of criticism for Darci’s victory, most of it not actually having anything to do with her or the act itself, but for being “too obvious”. While I found it annoying that the champions of both Seasons 11 and 12 felt determined pretty early on and get wanting to be surprised, that’s more on the producers than the actual talent. I think Darci fully deserved her win, being one of those rare acts that can appeal to music fans and variety-lovers alike.

October 5, 2017 I Written By

I'm obssessed with the entertainment industry, especially offbeat and nerdy things as well as those that involve live performance. The only thing I love more than geeking out over the things that entertain me is sharing in my excitement with others who share the same passions. America may have talent, but Canada has an up-and-coming blogger who is ready to take the internet by storm!

America’s Got Talent Season 7: Music List

Since there are three nights in Vegas I will put all the music onto the same post and update it as each day goes by:

Calvin Harris – Feel So Close Feel So Close - Now That's What I Call Music, Vol. 42
Jessie J – Who You Are Who You Are - Who You Are (Platinum Edition)
Flo Rida – Good Feeling Good Feeling - Now That's What I Call Music, Vol. 42

Music Sung by Female Vocalists:
Leona Lewis – Footprints In The Sand Footprints In the Sand - Spirit (Deluxe Version)
Amy Winehouse – Valerie Valerie - Back to Black: B-Sides
Johnny Cash – Folsom Prison Blues Folsom Prison Blues (Live) - The Essential Johnny Cash
Martina Mcbride – Do It Anyway Anyway - Anyway - Single
Jewel – You Were Meant For Me You Were Meant for Me - Pieces of You
Sheryl Crow – If It Makes You Happy If It Makes You Happy - The Very Best of Sheryl Crow (Digital Version)
Rolling Stones – You Can’t Always Get What You Want You Can't Always Get What You Want - Let It Bleed

Music used by Dance Groups:
Missy Elliott – Get Ur Freak On Get Ur Freak On (LP Version) - Miss E...So Addictive
Avant – Graduated Graduated - The Letter
Mims – Move If You Wanna Move (If You Wanna) - Move (If You Wanna) - Single
Far East Movement – So What? So What? - Free Wired

Music used in Novelty:
Carrie Underwood – Before He Cheats Before He Cheats - Some Hearts
Michael Buble – Feeling Good Feeling Good - It's Time
Pilot – Oh Ho Ho It’s Magic Magic - From the Album of the Same Name or Selena Gomez – Magic Magic - Radio Disney Jams 12

Music Sung by Classical Vocalists:
Il Volo – O Sole Mio 'O sole mio - Il volo
Giuseppe Verdi’s opera Rigoletto – La donna e mobile (here is the “Three Tenors” versions )
Rachmaninoff Op. 21 No. 7 – Zdes Khorosho (How fair is this spot) 12 Songs, Op. 21 (Excerpts): No. 7 - Zdes' Khorosho [How Fair This Spot] - Rachmaninov: Songs

Music sung by the Vocal Groups
Louis Armstrong – What A Wonderful World What a Wonderful World (Single Version) - Louis Armstrong's All-Time Greatest Hits
Ray Charles – Let The Good Times Roll Let the Good Times Roll - Ray Sings, Basie Swings
The Ronettes – Be My Baby Be My Baby - Be My Baby: The Very Best of The Ronettes

Music used by Youth Acts
The Jackson 5 – Blame It On The Boogie Blame It On the Boogie - Destiny
Gloria Estefan – Turn The Beat Around Turn the Beat Around - Greatest Hits Vol. II
David Guetta – Without You Without You (feat. Usher) - Nothing But the Beat

Music sung by Male Vocalists
Johnny Rivers – Secret Agent Secret Agent Man - Johnny Rivers: Greatest Hits
Tom Petty – Free Falling Free Fallin' - Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers: Greatest Hits
Goo Goo Dolls – Iris Iris - Greatest Hits, Vol. 1 - The Singles
George Strait – The Chair The Chair - 50 Number Ones
Paul McCartney – Maybe I’m Amazed Maybe I'm Amazed - Wingspan: Hits and History

Music played during Eliminations
Ludwig van Beethoven – Moonlight Sonata Piano Sonata No.14 In C Sharp Minor Op.27/2 - 1st Movement 'Moonlight - Classical Moods - 100 Top Classical Favorites of All Time
Jordin Sparks – No Parade No Parade - Battlefield (Deluxe Version)
Coldplay – Fix You Fix You - X & Y

Music sung by the Vocal Groups
Young The Giant – Cough Syrup Cough Syrup - Young the Giant
Christina Aguilera – Fighter Fighter - Stripped
Frank Sinatra – New York, New York Theme from New York, New York - Nothing But the Best - The Frank Sinatra Collection (Remastered)
Carl Perkins – Blue Suede Shoes Blue Suede Shoes - The Dance Album or the Elvis Presley version Blue Suede Shoes - The Essential Elvis Presley (Remastered)
Bob Dylan – Don’t Think Twice, It’s All Right Don't Think Twice, It's All Right - The Essential Bob Dylan or the Elvis Presley version Don't Think Twice, It's All Right - Walk a Mile In My Shoes: The Essential '70s Masters

Music used by the Youth Acts
James Brown – Get up offa that thing Get Up Offa That Thing - Golden Legends: James Brown Live
Adele – Turning Tables Turning Tables - 21

Music used by the Aerialists/Acrobatics Acts
Lady GaGa – Marry The Night Marry the Night - Born This Way (Bonus Track Version)

Music used in the Dance Groups
The Isley Brothers – Who’s That Lady Who's That Lady - It's Your Thing: The Story of the Isley Brothers
The Turtles – Happy Together Happy Together - Happy Together
Martha & the Vandellas – Dancing in the Streets Dancing In the Streets - Doo Wop Golden Oldies Vol 1

Music used in the Novelty Acts
Elvis Presley – Rubberneckin Rubberneckin' - Elvis At the Movies (Remastered)
Lady GaGa – Bad Romance Bad Romance - The Fame Monster (Deluxe Version)
Scott Joplin – The Entertainer The Entertainer - The Entertainer
Frank Sinatra – New York, New York Theme from New York, New York - Nothing But the Best - The Frank Sinatra Collection (Remastered)

Music used by the Dancers
Chris Brown – Yeah 3X Yeah 3X - Yeah 3X - Single
Chris Brown – I Can Transform Ya I Can Transform Ya (feat. Lil Wayne & Swizz Beatz) - I Can Transform Ya (feat. Lil Wayne & Swizz Beatz) - Single
Lil Wayne – I Am Not A Human Being Right Above It - I Am Not a Human Being

Music played during Eliminations
Leona Lewis – Alive Alive - Echo (Deluxe Version)
Coldplay – Fix You Fix You - X & Y
Christina Aguilera – Lift Me Up Lift Me Up - Bionic (Deluxe Version)
R. Kelly – I Believe I Can Fly I Believe I Can Fly - The R. In R&B Collection, Vol. 1

June 26, 2012 I Written By

America’s Got Talent Seven 7: Vegas Week

This week there are three days of America’s Got Talent at 8:00pm on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday.

At the top of Vegas Week the judges have separated the acts into two primary groups:
Judges Favorites: are the acts that the judges believe have the best chance to succeed on the live shows
Standbys: are the acts the judges are unsure about and will see them if there are slots available after the Judges Favorites have gone through

Anyone whose name is not found under the two groups mentioned above they would not perform in Vegas and would be going straight home that day. The catch is with that though is that some acts that do not have a chance to prove their worth at all while there will be some others that were given a free pass to the Live Shows in New York. The acts that we will definitely see in the Live Shows include:
William Close: Earth Harp
Olate Dogs: Dog Act
David “the Bullet” Smith: Human Cannonball

While the Judges Favorites are performing the Standbys are required to sit in the audience and watch what happens. What I found to be interesting is that people are crumbling left and right. I am not used to seeing that for America’s Got Talent, but a major part of that could be how the show is being edited to evoke maximum drama within a one-hour show.

On Wednesday / Thursday I will post who made the Top 48 Acts (well now 45 since 3 acts got a free pass to New York) that are moving on to the Live Shows in New York, I will also attempt to breakdown who came from which group / category so we can see how they all panned out.
Read more..

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Terry Fator DVD – Las Vegas Performance Show

One of the advantages of having this blog is that I sometimes get access to some pretty cool stuff. Like I got to interview 5 of the America’s Got Talent finalists. I also got to go to the opening night of Terry Fator in Las Vegas at the Mirage.

I admit that I thought Terry Fator was good, but after seeing his show at the Mirage he was outstanding!! That’s why I also jumped at the chance to get one of the Terry Fator DVD’s as well. You can order the Terry Fator DVD (and Blu-Ray) on Amazon now. I got a copy and it’s really well done.

Of course, the live show is more fun, but the DVD does a great job of capturing not only Terry Fator’s incredible talent but also captures the energy in the theater. Plus, the other nice part about the DVD is that you get some close up shots of the puppets and of Terry Fator. You can really see how good he is at what he does. Oh yes, Terry Fator’s Assistant isn’t too bad as well.

Inside the DVD there’s also a preview of his biography Who’s the Dummy Now?: Winner of America’s Got Talent. There was also a nice little note talking about Michael Jackson since Terry Fator does an impression of Michael Jackson in his act as well. It always amazes me how far reaching of an impact Michael Jackson had on people.

Good stuff. Terry Fator deserves all the accolades and attention he’s receiving. A lot of people are really going to enjoy watching the Terry Fator: Live from Las Vegas.

September 16, 2009 I Written By

Donald Braswell Back in Las Vegas and Texas

One of my readers and a faithful Donald Braswell fan sent me some good information on Donald Braswell’s schedule. She told me that Donald will be appearing in Vegas on May 19, 20, 21 and 22, at 8:00pm as a guest artist on Terry Fator’s show at the Mirage (read about Terry Fator’s grand opening at the Mirage). That should be a pretty cool combination night.

I’m hoping that I can possibly get some tickets to she show so that I can give everyone a full update about Donald Braswell and Terry Fator. I may even see if they’ll be available for an interview or something. We’ll see what we can do. Either way, I’m excited to see them in Las Vegas.

Donald will also be performing at the “Symphony of the Hills” Concert in, Kerrville, TX. It will be on Jun 27, 2009 at. 7:30pm . (There may also be a 2:30 concert in the afternoon.)

Donald will be performing a Pops concert with the Symphony of the Hills (Kerrville’s 70 piece symphony orchestra) at the beautiful Cailloux Theater. Kerrville is about 60 miles north west of SA in a
lovely hill country setting. This is a benefit concert with proceeds going to scholarships for students at Schreiner University.

On May 29, Donald will also be performing in a televised show with other contestants from Americas Got Talent. The show will be airing from Los Angeles. I hope that Donald fans will send me a note when they get more details on this show.

Donald Braswell fans should also check out the Donald Braswell Fan Club Calendar and the Free Donald Braswell music on his MySpace page.

UPDATE: I got word that Donald’s performance in Las Vegas at the Mirage has been postponed. Let’s hope it gets rescheduled soon.

April 11, 2009 I Written By

Terry Fator Prize Package – Can you say Free Puppet?

I just posted about my time at the Terry Fator grand opening at Mirage Las Vegas. My wife and I had a really great time going to the Mirage to see Terry Fator. At the end of the show as we were walking out, they handed us a gift bag. Check out this video where I show you what’s inside. Best part is that soon I’ll be giving everything inside away to some lucky Pure America’s Got Talent readers.

Enjoy the video (Disclaimer: I’m not a big video guy, but this deserved to be seen on video)

Excuse the low quality video. I didn’t want to pull out my video camera, so I just used my regular camera.

If you don’t want to wait to read Terry Fator’s biography, here’s a link to buy the book:
Who’s the Dummy Now?: Winner of America’s Got Talent

Watch for the Terry Fator biography and Winston giveaway coming soon. You can sign up for the Pure America’s Got Talent email and you’ll be notified of the contest in your email.

March 15, 2009 I Written By

Terry Fator Grand Opening at Mirage Las Vegas

The most successful act to have ever graced the America’s Got Talent stage is by far: Terry Fator. We’ve written a lot about Terry Fator and his success after winning America’s Got Talent. The most important of which was my post about Terry Fator headlining in Las Vegas, along with his new book and Terry Fator music on iTunes.

Tonight, Terry Fator opened his new show at the Mirage Las Vegas. I was lucky enough to be able to go to the show and see Terry’s grand opening in the new Terry Fator theatre. Man, was it something else. 2 hours of Terry Fator was more than I would have ever imagined.

A friend of mine that works for some other shows on the strip just couldn’t understand why Terry Fator, a ventriloquist, had an entire show on the strip. Now that I’ve seen a full Terry Fator show, I know exactly why he has a show. It was funny, it was entertaining and then you are astounded every few minutes as you’re reminded that this is a ventriloquist doing the impersonations and singing.

Ok, so I took a bunch of pictures. I didn’t think I’d be able to take pictures, so I took my small camera which isn’t very good quality. Turns out Terry Fator told us at the beginning of the show that there were “No Rules” and that the flash photography didn’t bother him so we could take as many pictures as we wanted. So, I did. I’ll first post a few pictures before and during the show and then at the bottom I’ll have a gallery of all the pictures of Terry Fator’s grand opening at the Mirage Las Vegas.

When we arrived at the mirage at every turn there was a big Terry Fator Grand Opening sign with a pretty girl standing next to the sign. Of course, I couldn’t resist a picture of a pretty girl, so here she is. I also told her I’d post her picture on my website, so now she’s famous (kind of).
Sign Girl for Terry Fator Grand Opening

This is a picture of the Terry Fator Gift shop. It looked really nice and had some cool stuff in it. Watch for a video of a free giveaway I’m going to do be doing that relates to what you can buy in the Terry Fator gift shop.
Terry Fator Theatre Gift Shop at Mirage Las Vegas

Once we got into the theatre, this was the stage with a DJ up on stage entertaining us while we waited. Good thing, because it started at least 15 minutes late.
Terry Fator Theatre Stage

This is a picture of the Terry Fator theatre. A little smaller than I expected, but still a really nice theatre with no seats very far from the action. Although, the middle is better than the side.
Terry Fator Theatre at Mirage Las Vegas

Terry Fator opens and closes his act with Winston the turtle. Winston is by far the best puppet Terry uses. He’s just so lovable.
Terry Fator and Winston The Turtle

This is Terry Fator’s very nice looking assistant from Honolulu, HI. It’s vegas, so there has to be some hot girl who has little to do with the show, right? Well, there she is for all to enjoy.
Terry Fator's Beautiful Assistant and Elvis Impersonator

The Commodores made a special guest appearance to sing a song for the grand opening of Terry Fator. They did a great performance that brought everyone to their feet. I think this was special for the Grand Opening. I wonder what other people will just drop in on Terry’s show. Would be cool to have some of the people he impersonates on the show.
Terry Fator with Commodores on Stage and Vicky the Cougar

The last one I’ll post here is Terry Fator saluting the audience after his grand opening at Mirage Las Vegas.
Terry Fator Saluting Audience at End of First Show at Mirage

I’ll leave the rest of the pictures in the gallery below and I’ll hit some interesting points about the show before the Terry Fator picture gallery.

The funniest moment of the whole show was when Terry Fator was impersonating Michael Jackson and accidentally did Michael Jackson’s voice for the puppet. Terry just put his head behind the puppet. Then, when he came up he was laughing so hard he kind of lost track of where he was. It wasn’t awkward or anything, it was just funny. Terry recovered well with a joke about his puppets voice being high and thinking he’d had a stroke. The whole moment was absolutely hilarious. Then, Terry even swapped voices again at the end of the set just to be funny. It was great.

A lot of other really really funny parts of the show. I’m not sure if Terry writes his scripts or someone else, but he has some funny material. Sometimes it seems like they added some gratuitous sex lines that weren’t needed, but overall it was a clean show that was funny and entertaining. The most amazing thing is the incredible range of his voice (or whatever you call making sound as a ventriloquist). He did so many styles, volumes and ranges that it is quite unbelievable to watch.

As expected Winston did steal the show. I think he should ask for his name to be added to the Marquee.

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Terry Fator Grand Opening at Mirage Las Vegas

I can’t tell you how excited I am to tell you that I’m going to be going to the grand opening of Terry Fator at Mirage Las Vegas. Terry Fator’s act was absolutely astonishing when I first saw it on America’s Got Talent. I usually hated ventriloquists, but Terry Fator’s Winston the turtle really made me fall in love with Terry Fator. Check out this video of Terry Fator from America’s Got Talent to see what I mean:

It’s fun to watch some of the past videos of Jerry Springer saying that whoever wins America’s Got Talent will have their life changed forever. Terry Fator’s hundred million dollar deal with Mirage seems like it’s true that Terry’s life has been changed forever.

I’m really looking forward to the Grand Opening of Terry Fator at Mirage. Will be an absolutely wonderful evening for my wife and I.

Of course, you can all expect tons of pictures and a full review after the event. Anyone else planning to go and see Terry Fator? I also hear there’s an after party that I’m hoping to attend. What would you ask Terry Fator if you came across him at a party?

March 12, 2009 I Written By

Donald Braswell Update – Las Vegas Show, New Beginnings Tour and PBS Special

I figured it was about time to do an update on one of the fan favorites from America’s Got Talent: Donald Braswell.

Donald has been incredibly busy following what I’m told was a sold out concert at the Hilton in Las Vegas. Makes me really happy to see Donald as a success. I certainly took my fair share of shots at Donald during the show. What can I say? I thought he was a little disingenuous to say he hadn’t been on a professional stage before AGT. I think I also preferred Eli Mattson‘s style a little bit better. However, one thing I never argues was whether Donald Braswell had talent or not. He absolutely has talent and I’m glad that America’s embracing someone who actually entertains with talent.

Well, turns out America loves Donald more than I ever thought they would. Check out what the Las Vegas Sun said about Donald Braswell and PBS.

PBS is doing a special on Braswell. Camera crews have been following him around since his appearance on the TV show.

“They felt I was an artist who could take things to a different level, inspiring audiences as well as entertaining them,” he says.

Braswell says the special first will be seen March 15 in five East Coast states and Canada as a test.

“If that is successful I will perform at the Detroit Opera House with a full orchestra for the entire United States and Canada,” he says. “That’s an exciting pro

A PBS special is really cool. I have a feeling that Donald Braswell will be really successful on PBS. I hope someone posts it online so we can all enjoy Donald on PBS.

Also, Donald Braswell will be on the New Beginnings Tour. Only one tour date has been announced for Donald, but I’m sure that more will be posted on Ticketmaster as they announce new locations. Here’s the first stop of the New Beginnings Tour:

Thomas Wolfe Auditorium, Asheville, N.C: Mar 21st 8pm, address is 87 Haywood St. Prices are $23 for balcony seating and $33 for the floor seating. Tickets are available starting 10am Jan 20th on and all the other shows for the New Beginnings tour will be updated as they are added.

I also want to thank all the fans at the Donald Braswell Fan club that have kept me informed about Donald. They are certainly true fans that any artist would be proud to have. Hopefully in the future they’ll share even more information about what’s happening with the Donald. I’m really hoping he returns to Las Vegas so I can see him this time.

March 2, 2009 I Written By

Terry Fator Must Be In Touch With Technology

Today I did a post about Terry Fator being one of my favorite America’s Got Talent acts. Turns out that Terry Fator (or at least his entourage) seems to be in touch with technology. I can say this, because today my logs show someone visiting my America’s Got Talent site from’s email.

Of course, it could be Terry or any of the hundreds of people who could have an email address that ends with However, I’m mostly impressed that whoever it is, utilizes technology to follow the buzz around Terry Fator. My guess is that this post about Terry will appear in their email box too. That’s a really good practice to be able to know who’s talking about you. I personally do the same thing in regards to the various TV shows I blog about.

Now the question is, if Terry Fator or his people are reading my blog, can they comp me a couple tickets for his show here in Las Vegas? My wife and I would love to see the show and a visit to the show would make for a brilliant blog post. What do you say Terry? Feel free to leave a comment below or drop me a line on the Contact Us page if you can get us some tickets.

Also, I’ve been working on a post that discusses what’s happened with Terry Fator since the show. Wait until you hear his album, his autobiography and his story of being on David Letterman.

August 24, 2008 I Written By