Illusionist Michael Turco and opera sensation Cindy Chang were two of the fan favorites who were eliminated Tuesday night during the first round of Vegas Week call-backs.
They were among the 100-plus hopefuls who arrived in Sin City hoping to earn a spot in the Top 48 and advance back to Hollywood for next week’s live shows.
Judges Piers Morgan, Sharon Osbourne and Howie Mandel immediately selected ten acts who were automatically put through: Professor Splash (shallow water diver), Rhinestone Ropers (knife throwers), Silhouettes (dance ensemble), Lys Agnes (opera singer), Miami All-Stars (dance crew), The Captain & Maybelle (sword swallower), Team Iluminate (light-up dance group), Melissa Villasenor (comedian), and the Fearless Flores Family (acrobats).
The remaining hopefuls were divided into smaller groups and each given 90 seconds to impress the judges. Among the highlights:
* Seasoned Atlantic City magician Michael Turco looked like his ticket would be punched until a faulty lock on his magic chest blew the illusion and knocked him out of the competition.
* Former firefighter Soleil Rousseau went head-to-head with New York teacher Steven Retchless in a classic pole dancing face-off. “If I get to Hollywood,” Rousseau said, “it would be really awesome to see my parents there in the audience, saying to people, ‘Hey, that’s my daughter.’” In the end, Retchless advanced.
* Justin Bieber look-alike Dani Shay completely choked her performance of an original song, yet was mysteriously invited back to sing later and eventually passed through to the next round.
* Vocal group 4Play experienced a complete vocal fail while performing a cover of Aretha Franklin‘s hit “(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman” and were eliminated on the spot.
* A dancer with the troupe Fatally Unique took a bloody spill during rehearsals and smashed her face on the floor. After a quick trip to the E.R., she returned, the show went on, and the group advanced to Hollywood.
In total, 31 acts were put through Tuesday. They are:
PROFESSOR SPLASH (Shallow Water Diver)
RHINESTONE ROPERS (Knife Throwers / Carnival Act)
SILHOUETTES (Dance Group)
CAPTAIN STAB & MAYBELLE (Sword Swallower)
TEAM ILUMINATE (Light up dance group)
LYS AGNES (Opera singer)
MELISSA VILLASENOR (Comic)
MIAMI ALL-STARS (Dance Troupe)
FEARLESS FLORES FAMILY (Acrobats)
ZUMA ZUMA (Acrobats)
SUMMERWIND SKIPPERS (Jump Rope Team)
SNAP BOOGIE (Dancer)
STEVEN RETCHLESS (Pole Dancer)
DARING JONES DUO (Trapeze Artists)
FRANK MILES (Stunt Juggler)
CHARLES PEACHOCK (Stunt Juggler)
YELLOW DESIGN STUNT TEAM (Stunt Bike Riders)
LANDAU EUGENE MURPHY, JR. (Singer)
MONA LISA (Singing Sisters)
DEZMOND MEEKS (Singer)
FATALLY UNIQUE (Dancers)
DANI SHAY (Singer)
SQUAWK OPERA (Opera Singers)
J. CHRIS NEWBERG (Comedian)
GICHI GUY (Comedian)
SCOTT ALEXANDER (Magician)
THOSE FUNNY PEOPLE (Dancing Gnomes)
ECHO (Talking Parrot)
KINETIC KING (Illusionist)