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'America's Got Talent': Balancing Contortionists, Digital Artists & an Operatic Taxi Driver Amaze the Judges

by Zach Seemayer 7:45 PM PDT, June 27, 2017
Playing 'America's Got Talent': Balancing Contortionists, Digital Artists & an Operatic Taxi Driver Amaze the Judges

America's Got Talent fans might have seen the wildest, strangest and most mystifying auditions of the entire season on Tuesday's new episode.

While there were a score of traditional performances that impressed the judges, there were also a few routines that nearly defied explanation or description. From a group of physical comics to a pair of mysterious digital artists, this latest group of AGT hopefuls really must be seen to be believed.

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Two of the night's most impressive auditions were delivered by a husband and wife, who are competing separately.

Maxim and Maria Popazov are both masters at balancing and contortionism, but as they admitted backstage, the couple cannot work together without getting on each other's nerves, so they decided to try out with separate acts.

Maxim came out first and wowed the crowd with an amazing routine in which he balanced chairs on top of one another and then climbed them, adding more as he ascended higher and higher.

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The judges were blown away by his act, and told Maria as much when she came out. Undeterred, the stunning performer confidently declared her intention to give them an impressive display of physical prowess, and she didn't disappoint.

Like her husband, Maria showed off her jaw-dropping talent at balancing in precarious positions -- and then she took her act to a whole other level with some amazing contortion tricks, all while balancing by nothing more than the strength of her teeth.

This week also included one of the season's most creative auditions from a trio of Swedish physical comedians called Sirqus Alfon, who showcased their "acrobatic" talents with a unique performance that saw the three entertainers take their 3-D show into the 2-D realm for a uniquely impressive act.

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While judge Simon Cowell admittedly didn't understand what he saw and voted no, Heidi Klum and Mel B really appreciated the routine and voted yes. Howie Mandel took his praise a step further, calling them "the new Three Stooges," and giving them the yes vote they needed to move on to the next round of competition.

On the other end of the technological spectrum was a marvelous bit of digital performance art from two mysterious visual geniuses named Oskar and Gaspar. The duo, who supposedly don't like to be seen in public, sent three young men to represent their creative creation, and the results were amazing.

By getting Heidi to change into a skin-tight white body suit, the artists turned her into a living canvas, and used spectacular projections to turn her into a constantly changing digital masterpiece.

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As always, there were some truly amazing musical auditions as well, and one of the best performances came from a young singer named Johnny Manuel, who came to AGT to try and reclaim his dreams.

Manuel explained to the judges that, when he was 14, he was signed to a record label as a rapper who went by the name "Little Johnny." He went from performing as an opening act for major artists to getting dropped by his label and having to return home to live with his parents.

For his audition, Johnny delivered a rousing cover of Whitney Houston's powerful ballad, "I Have Nothing," that brought the judges to their feet, and earned him nothing but love and praise.

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One of the night's biggest surprises came courtesy of a taxi driver named Carlos De Antoni, who admitted that he sings for his passengers, and decided to audition after one of his fares suggested that he try out for AGT.

The friendly, smiling Italian cabbie came out and surprised the judges with an beautiful operatic performance that showcased his larger-than-life voice, and earned him the four yes votes he needed to move on in the season.

Check out the video below for a look at some of the other amazing acts that have brought down the house throughout this season.

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