For his semi-final performance on “America’s Got Talent: The Champions,” Tyler Butler-Figueroa decided to show us a different side of his artistry as a violinist. The 12 year old typically performs uptempo remixes of popular songs that are recognizable from the instrumentals alone. But this week he slowed it down for a rendition of the Louis Armstrong classic “What a Wonderful World” and enlisted a vocalist to accompany in singing a few of the lyrics. Watch the performance above.
The judges all enjoyed the performance and complimented Tyler on his clear talent, but Simon Cowell offered him one bit of advice for the next round: lose the vocalist. According to Simon, Tyler is talented enough to be on stage by himself and let his playing of the violin speak for itself. This is, however, what Tyler’s done for most of his previous performances, but I see where Simon is coming from.
In changing it up from a high energy track to something more emotionally-driven this week Tyler had already taken a risk. Adding a vocalist to the performance could come off as a crutch of sorts. Furthermore, and as the judges pointed out, Tyler is clearly a very talented musician who is driven by his inspiration from his own battle with cancer and his devotion to his mother and family. His story on the show is a great one and he has devoted fans that will support him through the risks he takes in his performances.
Tyler was wonderful this week in the semi-finals and more than deserving of the spot he earned in the finals based on the Superfans vote. He will compete against the nine other finalists on Monday, February 10. Do you agree with Simon — should Tyler take the stage alone next time or did you prefer the added element of a vocalist to his performance?