By performing last during the “America’s Got Talent” Finals, choral group Ndlovu Youth Choir is the latest act to be presented with the so-called “AGT” curse. Over the first 13 seasons of NBC’s reality TV show only two acts — Grace VanderWaal and Olate Dogs — performed last during their finale nights and went on to win the $1 million prize. The other 11 all fell short. Will Ndlovu Youth Choir’s performance of Toto‘s “Africa” break the curse? Watch the performance video above, read the judges’ comments below and then make your predictions before Wednesday’s finale.
Simon Cowell: “I pray that this show can change people’s live. I think that performance may just have done it. And you have ended with that performance, and I really mean this, the best final I have ever sat on in my life. That was your best performance by a clear mile. Amazing.”
Julianne Hough: “This is my first season on ‘AGT’ and first of all, just thank you for giving me this opportunity to be in front of you, in front everybody. I am so blessed to watch you guys and the joy that you bring to us, to everybody watching all over the world. If you can dream it, you can do it.”
Gabrielle Union: “Oh, I’m so proud! This whole audience was along for the journey with you guys. You are the pride of Africa. You are the pride of America. You have literally changed your entire trajectory with one performance. Thank you.”
Howie Mandel: “You know, you’re right, you’re not only the pride of Africa, youth and the world, you make us so proud to be part of this world and to have you on this planet. This has been the most emotional, inspirational, wonderful, talent-filled final that I have ever been part of. I’m fascinated that Neil Patrick Harris is your choir leader. I didn’t know that, but that’s great. Anyway, what a finale. Vote!”
In his “AGT” live blog, our recapper John Benutty had this to say about the performance: “The Ndlovu Youth Choir needed two judges saves (once in the quarterfinals and again in the semifinals) in order to make this finale, but tonight they showed exactly why they deserved a spot. Their staging, overall production value and vocal was better tonight than it’s ever been. When they come together for their big chorus moments their harmonies give me goosebumps! And when they broke into a dance routine you could see Julianne, Gabrielle and members of the audience dancing along! It was a truly wonderful way to cap off the season and one of the strongest finales in series history. All the judges agreed that with that performance the group catapulted themselves into a new level and that they will forever be changed because of it!”
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