'America's Got Talent' recap: Tampa, Fla. auditions not so hot
The judges were hot during the Tampa stop of the "America's Got Talent" auditions Monday night — Howard Stern complained he was sweating "like a pig" — but apart from a few exceptions, the talent onstage was less so.
After the requisite upbeat urban-youth-saving crew, Inspire the Fire — complete with cheery cardigans and uplifting video intro in which they call the group "a family" — did its singing/dancing thing and made it to Vegas (the judges found it less "corny" than "Glee"), we got some guy wearing a doll in a Baby Bjorn, a self-dubbed "Scissorhands" who did something unclear to a woman's hair, and some other dude who said he was "America's escape hero" but may have been our nation's least-impressive escape artist.
We also got "bikini bombshell" dancers who couldn't dance. Howie Mandel said that, even though he added that although the women were "atrocious" hoofers with "no talent whatsoever," he "still loved" their act. But Stern, to his credit, was unmoved. "My Aunt Sally … at 95, she moved better than you," he said. "At least if your implants had exploded we would have had excitement."
Those acts may have left viewers cold, and a few other promising acts (Hawley Magic and Alesya Gulevich the hula-hoop artist, to name two) were coolly given only a few seconds of air time by producers.
But a handful of performers managed to generate at least some heat:
All That: A burly male clogging group who Mandel hailed for exciting the audience. "When you can bring them to their feet with just your feet, I think you've done something," he told them. Sharon Osbourne even wondered if they could teach her husband, Ozzy, to clog. (Now that could be a million-dollar act.)
The Distinguished Men of Brass: A sharp-suited band of talented fellows who'd lost their jobs and come together to make music and chart a new path, inspiringly. "Thank God for bad times because they brought you guys together," Stern half-joked.
Ulysses: This peculiar-haired, round-bellied, lucky-sweater-wearing guy proved himself to be an able singer of vintage TV theme songs. He treated the audience and the judges to "The Love Boat," "Green Acres" and "The Addams Family," failing to win Stern's love but advancing to Vegas thanks to Mandel and Osbourne, who saw the nostalgic entertainment value in Ulysses' peculiar talent. Yes, they were drawn to Ulysses' siren song.
What did you think of the acts on Monday's show?
— Amy Reiter
Photo: The Distinguished Men of Brass at "America's Got Talent" Tampa, Fla. auditions. Credit: Virginia Sherwood / NBC.