Simon Cowell (‘America’s Got Talent’) raves Ndlovu Youth Choir is in a ‘way higher league’ during semifinals [WATCH]

This is the “America’s Got Talent” performance you’ve been waiting for. African chorale group Ndlovu Youth Choir wowed the Dolby Theatre stage during Tuesday’s quarterfinals episode and had everyone up on their feet with their cover of Whitney Houston and Kygo‘s “Higher Love.” Notoriously mean judge Simon Cowell even raved the choir was in a “way higher league” than they’ve ever been before. Can Ndlovu Youth Choir actually on to become the first chorale group to win NBC’s reality TV show? Watch the “AGT” video above, read the judges’ comments below and then make your predictions before Wednesday’s results show.

Gabrielle Union: “You guys asked for a higher love and you delivered it to all of us. You are the pride and joy of South Africa and the pride and joy of the world. What you guys do is so inspiring and so moved me and I’m crying again. I’m just so incredibly proud. Way to go, you guys.”

Julianne Hough: “Ndlovu, you are making waves. What you do is global inclusion and that is beyond anything that we could ever hope or dream for, so thank you. Second of all, you’re bringing the love, I agree with Gabrielle. You just made us all dance, like we can do what you do. I love you.”

Howie Mandel: “One word: beautiful. You sound beautiful, you look beautiful, and looking at your faces, the audience’s faces, Simon’s face — this is the first time he’s worn glasses. You are the first act he has seen all season and what a way to open up.”

Simon Cowell: “I thought the film was beautiful. The President of South Africa is actually tweeting about you. The pressure on the semifinal is enormous. I really mean what I’m about to say. For me this performance was in a way higher league than anything you’ve done prior to tonight. I loved everything about it. And your joy — even when I see you guys backstage, the nicest group, the most excited group of people we’ve had on the show for years. You really deserve a place in the final after that.”

Sean Hayes: “I don’t know what to say. The first time seeing it live, the joy, the spirit, the talent, all of it is so infectious. Dare I say, I don’t know how you’re not going to the finals. I just thought it was amazing.”

In his “AGT” live blog, our recapper John Benutty had this to say about the performance: “The first performance of the night came from Ndlovu Youth Choir. with their take on the new song ‘Higher Love’ by Whitney Houston and Kygo. The song started out with a stunning opening by one female vocalist and then transitioned into a full chorus featuring all the voices in perfect unison. The group also maintained their unique African perspective in music, costumes and choreography, but executed it all so much better tonight than ever before. Simon called the performance in a ‘way higher league’ than anything they’ve done so far as well as calling them one of the nicest acts in the competition. And in his first critique, Sean said they’re amazing and doesn’t see how they won’t make the final.”

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