'America's Got Talent' finalists: the 10 acts competing against Mayyas

The dance group from Lebanon may be favourites but they have stiff competition in the finals

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Lebanese dance group Mayyas are in the finals of America’s Got Talent. The US reality competition show will crown its season 17 winners on Wednesday.

The Mayyas are no strangers to the Got Talent franchise as they competed in Arabs Got Talent in 2019 and were Najwa Karam’s golden buzzer act. They went on to win the series. In the same year, they also participated in Britain’s Got Talent: The Champions, an international spin-off of the talent show on UK TV, but did not advance.

Scroll the gallery below to see more of Mayyas

Now appearing on America's Got Talent, where they are judge Sofia Vergara’s golden buzzer act, the group have their sights set on winning the coveted $1 million prize.

“There are no words to explain to you what we’re feeling over here,” said Vergara during their audition. “It was the most beautiful creative dancing I’ve ever seen.”

Before pressing the buzzer, she added: “I would be so honoured to empower you even more in this journey because you deserved it and I want to be part of this.”

During their semi-finals performance, they again earned the praise from all four judges, receiving a standing ovation.

"Every single one of us in this room, I promise you, are going to remember this moment," Simon Cowell said of the performance.

"This is not just going to change your lives, and this is going to sound very dramatic, this is a performance that changes the world. It was as good as it gets ... respect."

Vote in our poll at the bottom for who you think will win

As one of 11 remaining acts, here’s a look at their competition:

Avery Dixon, saxophonist

The musician from Atlanta, Georgia received the golden buzzer from Terry Crews. He auditioned by performing Otis Redding’s Try a Little Tenderness on the saxophone. After automatically qualifying for the semi-finals, he played Stevie Wonder’s Higher Ground backed by a full band and received a standing ovation as well as praise from all the judges.

What the judges said: “I’m going to predict something, I said this about Carrie Underwood years ago on another show, which is that you are going to be a superstar," said Cowell. "I promise you, Avery, everything you dreamt of I actually believe is going to happen."

Celia Munoz, ventriloquist

The Spanish ventriloquist from Madrid wowed audiences with her original act. In her audition, she threw her voice to a radio and telephone while carrying out various activities such as putting on her make-up, flossing and drinking a glass of water. In the semi-finals, she performed a skit where she was at a drive-in theatre and sang Olivia Newton John’s Hopelessly Devoted to You from Grease while eating popcorn and sipping soda. She finished third and didn’t advance, but fans gave her a second chance as the wild card winner.

What the judges said: “I love how you create the set and how you suckered us into your world and you make all the noises," said Heidi Klum. "I don’t know how you eat and do ventriloquism at the same time. It’s incredible. You have an amazing mind and I love your imagination. This is very new and very different. Bravo."

Chapel Hart, country music trio

Chapel Hart is made up of sisters Danica and Devynn Hart and their cousin Trea Swindle who come from Poplarville, Mississippi. They auditioned with their original song You Can Have Him, Jolene, a response to Dolly Parton’s Jolene. The trio received a group golden buzzer (only the second act to get it), advancing to the live rounds. They next performed another upbeat original song called The Girls Are Back In Town and received a standing ovation.

What the judges said: “We loved you from your very first audition," said Cowell. "We loved you because you just lit up the room. Your songs are brilliant. You are amazing performers and I have a really, really, really good feeling about what’s going to happen for you."

Drake Milligan, country singer-songwriter

The country musician auditioned with his original song Sounds Like Something I’d Do while playing the guitar and backed by his band, winning over the judges and audience. All four voted yes. In the semi-finals, he put on an energetic performance with another original tune called Kiss Goodbye All Night and received a standing ovation.

What the judges said: “I will predict that tomorrow that song will be No 1 on the country chart again, I promise you," said Howie Mandel. "You have a good chance of winning this whole thing."

Kristy Sellars, multimedia pole dancer

The Australian dancer combines poles with background projection during her performances to create a story. She won the 9th series of Australia’s Got Talent in 2019. She stunned with her America's Got Talent audition in which she performed a routine to 2WEI’s cover of Hit The Road, Jack. In the semi-finals, she performed a magical dual pole routine in which she transported through fantasy worlds and received a standing ovation from the judges.

What the judges said: “You have to be at the right time, at the right place, at the right moment to create your magic," said Vergara. "This was even better than the audition."

Metaphysic, artificial intelligence (AI) group

Metaphysic is founded by Thomas Graham and Chris Ume who use AI to create deepfakes. For the audition, they teamed up with former America’s Got Talent finalist Daniel Emmet to have him sing Chicago’s You’re the Inspiration but with Metaphysic technology, and were able to have him do so appearing as Simon Cowell on screen. For the semi-finals, they had another deepfake performance with Emmet joined by Patrick Dailey and John Riesen singing Nessun Dorma as Cowell, Terry Crews and Howie Mandel, earning a standing ovation.

What the judges said: "This is not the best act of the night," said Cowell. "This is the best act of the series so far."

Mike E Winfield, comedian

Winfield is from Baltimore, Maryland and performs stand-up comedy. His two performances on America’s Got Talent had the comic making jokes about the age difference between him and his older wife as well as jokes involving his stepson, whom he calls “stepman” because they are close in age. He received standing ovations for both his performances.

What the judges said: “You walk on and you brought it," said Cowell. "It being star quality, every part of it was a star performance in my opinion."

Nicolas Ribs, magician

The French magician competed on the 14th season of France’s Got Talent in 2019 but was eliminated in the semi-finals. In his audition for America’s Got Talent, he performed close-up magic on a light table where he turned items such as playing cards into 3D objects. In the semi-finals, he returned with a similar routine, using the help of Crews to perform more sleight-of-hand tricks with different objects.

What the judges said: "The bar this year for magic has risen and I predict you have a real good chance at winning this whole thing,” said Mandel.

Sara James, singer

The young Polish singer won the fourth season of The Voice Kids Poland in 2021 and she also represented her country at the Junior Eurovision Song Contest in the same year. At 14, she’s the youngest contestant to make the finals. She received Cowell’s golden buzzer after performing Billie Eilish’s Lovely. In the semi-finals, she sang a slow rendition of Elton John’s Rocket Man and received a standing ovation.

What the judges said: “Absolutely amazing," said Klum. "I have to also give it to Simon, you sure know how to pick the stars."

Yu Hojin, magician

The magician from South Korea toured the world with The Illusionists, a rotating group of magicians, for seven years before he decided to go solo. He’s known for his sleight-of-hand tricks. During his audition, he made feathers grow and appear and disappear during a performance set to Emile Sande’s Read All About It. Although Cowell voted no, the other three judges voted yes to send him to the next round. In the semi-finals, he performed close-up magic with the theme of imagination, getting a standing ovation from the judges.

What the judges said: “I think I helped you. By me saying 'no' at the auditions, I think it has pushed you to be a better magician," said Cowell. "And I'm very happy to say, on live television, I am officially an idiot."

Vote for who you think will win in our poll below

 
Updated: September 14, 2022, 4:30 AM
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