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'America's Got Talent' Recap: We've Got Finalists

Three acts advance to finals, Train gets pitchy on 'Drive By'

David Garibaldi and the CMYK's.
Virginia Sherwood/NBC
September 7, 2012 9:40 AM ET

With the finals for America's Got Talent less than a week away, there were still 12 acts to whittle down last night on the second semifinal results show. Only three would advance. It’s a big deal: as host Nick Cannon announced at the outset, whoever wins not only bags $1 million, but kicks off a headlining show in Las Vegas at the Venetian at the end of the month. Now for the results.

Like last week, the acts were narrowed down to four, with the top two contenders automatically advancing. The judges picked between the two remaining contestants.

The first trio? Father-daughter singing duo Maurice and Shanice Hayes, who on Tuesday belted out a middling rendition of a Mariah Carey number; the muscle men who double as cloggers, All That; and futuristic performance artists Light Wire Theater. Drumroll. The act moving one step closer to the finals was: Light Wire Theater. "We've made it past this step," said the group's frontman, "but now we have to go suffer for another 45 minutes." True that!

Next on the chopping block: intensely awkward comedian Jacob Williams, who turned in his worst performance of the season Tuesday; speed-painter/dancer/creator of havoc David Garibaldi and his CMYKs; and mini mariachi singer Sebastian "el charro de oro." Which act would live to see another day? David Garibaldi and his CMYKs. "What's going through my mind?" Garibaldi asked. "I'm just thanking the judges for this opportunity and America for voting!"

Then there was some time to kill, which in this case meant the appearance of the self-proclaimed "world's youngest rock band," Haunted By Heroes. The 12-year-old riffers chugged through a brawny rendition of "We're Not Gonna Take It" before Twisted Sister singer Dee Snider joined them on stage. Guess he's still locked in to that contract with NBC from his stint on Celebrity Apprentice.

Back to the results. Next onstage was bird master Clint Carvallo and his Extreme Parrots; exceptional dog trainers Olate Dogs; and All Wheel Sports, the massive crew that flips, jumps and cheerleads, all at once. This pairing was anticlimactic. As we expected, the act still in the hunt was Olate Dogs. "We love all the fans out there," said the younger of the two trainers. "It's incredible!"

Just three more acts: the young but mind-jarringly professional dance troupe the Untouchables; Joe Cocker-esque crooner Tim Hockenberry; and adept illusionist Magic of Puck. The Untouchables moved on. "I'm all over that crying stuff," said the eight-year-old group member who had bawled her eyes two nights earlier.

After Train performed a pitchy take on its hit single, "Drive By," the four acts still gunning for the finals returned to the stage to learn which two were advancing. When the Untouchables found out they were one of them, the aforementioned little girl spazzed out. The second act in the finals: Olate Dogs. "For us to be chosen, it's a blessing," said the trainer/group spokesperson.

That left the judges to choose between Light Wire Theater and David Garibaldi and his CMYKs. Sharon Osbourne voted first: Light Wire Theater. Howie Mandel went next and chose David Garibaldi and crew. So it all came down to Howard Stern. "Normally I like doing something like this," he said. But the King of all Media's respect for both acts made his choice a tough one. Based on the fact that he likes watching people paint in the park, Stern chose David Garibaldi and his CMYKS. "It's been a long journey," Garibaldi said. "We are very grateful."

There you have it: the finals are set on America's Got Talent, and the contestants competing for the grand prize next Wednesday are comedian Tom Cotter, musician William Close, sand artist Joe Castillo, dance troupe the Untouchables, dog trainers Olate Dogs and painter David Garibaldi and his CMYKS.

Last recap: Semifinals, Take Two

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