Masterclass Discussion Thread For America’s Got Talent Semi-Finalists: Group 2

America's Got Talent

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Last week’s  America’s Got Talent Semi-Final Show was not as spectacular as I would have hoped, but, in the end, three of the four acts that should have advanced, did so.

Tonight’s 12 performers will also compete for a position in the Top 10 Finals of America’s Got Talent and it promises to be a superb show.

My personal favorites, magician extraordinaire, Michael Grasso and prodigious vocalist, 10-year-old Jackie Evancho, are scheduled to grace the stage with their brilliance.

However, there are a couple of other singers,whose names I have forgotten , that peak my interest and  other illusionists will give Michael a bit  of a run for his money.

It’s going to be a super night!  Enjoy the ride everyone!

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Rosanne (Giallonardo) Simunovic began her musical career in Timmins, Ontario. She studied piano with Anne Pizzale and later, at an advanced level, with Soeur Anita Vaugeois (Sister Cecile of Les Soeurs De L’Assomption in Timmins). Her vocal and accompaniment skills were nurtured by her aunt, the late Dorothea Mascioli. When Rosanne graduated from O’Gorman High School, she moved on to the University of Toronto where she continued her piano and vocal studies while attaining a Bachelor of Arts Degree. She was hired as a piano accompanist for several musical companies, most notably, the National Ballet Of Canada. She presently holds an A.R.C.T. Teacher’s Diploma in Voice from the Royal Conservatory of Music in Toronto. Rosanne has studied choral conducting with numerous well known Canadian Conductors, including Wayne Riddell of Montreal, Quebec and the internationally renowned Dr. Elmer Iseler. She has been a founding member of numerous community-based arts organizations: the Timmins Arts Council, later known as Arts & Culture Timmins, the Timmins Symphony Orchestra, and, the Timmins Youth Singers…as well as the TYS Alumnus choir, the Timmins Concert Singers. In 1987, she was also selected to be the conductor of the Timmins Board Of Education Choir, comprised of talented students from Grades 5 to 8. In 1988, she was elected to the Board Of Directors of the Ontario Choral Federation (now known as Choirs Ontario), where she served as Chair of the Festivals Committee for six consecutive seasons. In 1996, in honour of the Ontario Choral Federation’s 25th Anniversary, Rosanne was selected as one of 25 recipients of the OCF’s Distinguished Service Award for outstanding contribution to the choral art. The ceremony was presided by Lieutenant Governor, Hal Jackman. In November 1997, Rosanne Simunovic was selected by the Rotary Club Of Timmins to receive the prestigious Paul Harris Award for her years of dedication to the artistic development of young musical talent in Timmins. In August of 2002, Rosanne Simunovic was selected by the Board Of Directors of Choirs Ontario to serve as Conductor of both the Provincial Junior and Teen Choir Camps, now renamed in honour of the Camp Benefactors, Don and Lillian Wright. In November 2002, Rosanne was the one of the recipients of the Commemorative Medal for the Golden Jubilee of Queen Elizabeth II, honouring her work in the development of the arts in Timmins. Under Rosanne Simunovic’s direction, the Timmins Youth Singers and the Timmins Concert Singers have been featured in numerous choral festivals and performing opportunities outside of Timmins. In 1985, they were selected to partici

49 Responses to “Masterclass Discussion Thread For America’s Got Talent Semi-Finalists: Group 2”

  1. I hope it will be a bit more exciting than last week. I am debating whether Jackie Evancho should even be on this show. Does she really belong in a Las Vegas show? If a singer os booked for Carnegie Hall, do they really need AGT? Wouldn’t appearing on Oprah or Ellen’s Show have been more expected.

    Jackie’s voice is fabulous, but I just don’t know about her appearance. I will admit she does bring the best to the show. I hope she will sing something with a tinge of pop in it!


  2. Michael Grasso just blew this competition out of the water. He is the one to beat this year. A classy and courageous and creative competitor! Love him!


  3. grammie im not trying to be rude, but do you know how many of these acts have vegas shows? cds? perform at places? jackie is not a proffesional. she was offered ONE performance at carnagie hall. its not like she is a regular star there. im really not happy with what i see as a bunch of hypocricy about what goes on in this show.

    it seems as people say ‘well my act can perform in vegas and have a cd but yours cant have a show at carnagie hall!”. look at all the magicians and illusionists nick states are from ‘las vegas’ think that is a coincidence?

    i also saw that you absolutely adored her that night till you looked her up on wikipedia. then you claimed the next day that you made the comment you thought her performance looked fake… all this hindsight? why so much dislike for this girl? i dont get it 😦

    oh and to vonnie and you and everyonelse who ever doubted that her performances are real, did she remove those doubts tonight? she absolutely killed it tonight imo!


  4. and why does jackie have to sing something with pop? her background bears out she does more opera and musical stuff, and that gets her over HUGE with the audience. she doesnt have to stand up there and be a brittney spears wannabee……she loves what she does and she loves making crowds go absolutely bonkers like they did tonight.

    sharon had to stop 3 times before she gave her critique on jackie’s performance because the crowd was still cheering. i have never seen that for any act…..ever. not here, not on idol. nothing.

    id also like to point out that the contract for the winner doesnt give them a permanent headline show in vegas. it gives them a one shot performance at ceasrs (or if jackie or anna and patrick win, most likely plant hollywood vegas) and a 25 city tour with the other top 10 contestents. jackie has already performed in vegas before in 2009 too.


  5. masterclass i also thought grazzo was great.

    i cannot believe those idiots posing as judges didnt bring him out of the vegas auditions 😦

    him jackie and defying gravity are shoo ins for the finals imo


  6. Scott – I hope you’re right. My Top 3 right now are Jackie, Michael Grasso and Fighting Gravity. I would like to see a Top 4 that would include Anna and Patryk.

    There was a ton of talent on that stage last night and I can honestly say that all the performers were very impressive.


  7. masterclass im seriously annoyed with the judges stupidity this season. they took awful acts like the bad impersonator, the ‘magician’ who ended up dancing in a diaper mary ellen and the air guitar group to the top 48 and none of them should have even made it out of the original auditions. then they took a very talented pair of bellydancers (who the male judges drooled over of course) and dumped them……not to mention anna and patrick got hosed in the quarters too, but piers of all people brought them back as a wildcard.

    then you have grasso, who didnt make it out of vegas, but now is probably gonna make the top 10. what were they thining when they didnt take him to the top 48?

    then you have jackie, who they have turned down twice, and maybe 3 times, and now, like grazzo, they absolutely love her.

    Are they on drugs or something? They have been inconsistan and just plain bad 😦


  8. Last night was the best single night ever for the series. I can only remember one from last week and that’s Michael Grimm. I think that’s his name. There were 8 really good acts last night. But Fighting Gravity and Jackie were head and shoulders above ther rest that’s why they were the last two. If they went first no one would have paid much attention to the rest. And howie was right. Only FG could have followed Jackie with any kind of success. I actually saw how Grasso did his trick last night so I’m not quite as impressed. I’m more impressed with his three kidney transplants. And until Jackie sang on this show, I was not planning to see the AGT tour show. I am buying tix now.

    I really can’t see anyone else but FG and Jackie in the final two. There is one more singer, not from last night but last week, I can see going places, and that’s Michael Grimm.

    As for jackie she did crap out a littel on that last note but that song was much harder to sing tahn her last. Still absolutely brilliant and heartwarming. No matter what happens on this show with her, we will see her for years to come.

    And MCL whre’s my link from your site? It used to be there.


  9. It makes good TV ~ that’s all it is ~ hype.


  10. what makes good tv and hype?


  11. It is too bad that Nathaniel didn’t do too well last night. Darn! He must have had not practice ~ probably with all the attention from the girls distracted him during his weeks off. I don’t care 4 the bicycle guy ~ geez; neither the aerial dancers or the magician with the train. Well, that is my reaction but like Howie says ~ it looked great live but the TV don’t really always flatter the acts.


  12. Scott, well, it is like American Idol and how they have strange and non talented singers or acts in AFT’s case. I don’t care for it ~ making fun. But evidentally, it is what the audience likes.


  13. Masterclass lady, there has been discussion on other boards about the potential harm Jackie could face to her voice by “trying to sound like an adult.” From a vocal training standpoint, I am interested to hear your thoughts on this?


  14. sar i think it depends on whether she is getting the right vocal coaching or not. im hoping she does. she seems to have the right parents that dont push her……im hoping she doesnt have a voice coach who does.

    surely well i dont think the guy dancing in his diaper made very good tv. or the dog that couldnt play the accordian. mind you these lame things and other acts were all selected by the JUDGES….while they rejected superior talent like jackie and grazzo


  15. Hi Scott,

    Okay…I will admit that I did have doubts about Jackie, if she was truly singing or not, and last night she did appear to be singing live!!!

    That said…I wasn’t too impressed! Sorry! I am more interested in Prince Poppycock as a singer than Jackie, she is as cute as she can be and has a phenomenal voice, but I would not pay to go and see her.

    My favs from last night…Fighting Gravity!!!


  16. hey vonnie lol its ok. we cant all like the same acts 😉 i just wanted to get this ‘fraud’ stuff settled 🙂

    btw it surely looks like a showdown between poppy/jackie in the finals 🙂


  17. Sara – I do believe Jackie is blessed with an enormous vocal gift. What she hasn’t been blessed with is access to impeccable vocal training.

    That quivering mouth and jaw signals a great deal of tension in her vocal projection. There is no freedom to her vocal sound and, with time, this approach is going to cause her irreparable harm if it is not addressed sooner than later.

    Plus she raises her head often when she sings – another sign of misguided vocal technique. And, did everyone hear the crack on her final note? Lots of tension in this young lady’s voice – too much!

    She is coasting on her natural vocal talent but, without technical security, she will hit a wall as she approaches her teens. The vocal cord is a muscle – it needs to be trained with care and professionalism, similar to what seasoned athletes endure over the course of their careers.

    When will some aspiring singers stop to understand and accept this?


  18. I linked you now – under American Idol and Personal Favorites. 🙂 I love me some Michael Grasso but I do admit that Fighting Gravity is a unique, once-in-a-lifetime phenomenon.

    We are living in a day and age where we can rewind our PVRs and gain further access to the method behind the magic. However, as a first impression, last night’s Grasso trick was spectacular. How did he do it? Please share with us.


  19. Hey Scott,

    This “fraud” stuff…settled!!! Lol

    I think you may be right about a Jackie -vs- Poppycock showdown.

    So, the one’s who are safe tonight, they will join the other five and this will be the top ten, right? So then where does this show go now? How many will be safe from the top ten and will they all compete then at the same time? How many weeks do they stretch this out?

    I’m sorry Scott…I do ask alot of questions…!


  20. Forgot to add…I sure do hope Fighting Gravity and Michael Grimm are somewhere in this Jackie/Poppycock showdown!


  21. vonnie top 10 will compete head to head next week, i think either the top 4 or 5 will go to the finals the week after that. yes, grimm and fighting gravity should be in both rounds.

    masterclass lady, overall what did you think of jackie last night?


  22. i also hate how im hearing people say ‘oh grasso’s trick was so easy to figure out.’ ummm what? not when your watching it live. ummmmmm the purpose of a vegas act isnt to go dissect it on your dvd player……what you see live is what you get


  23. i will be back after the results show tongiht.

    if jackie and/or grazzo dont make it i might be too depresed though 🙂


  24. Scott

    They are only there for laughs and that is what makes good TV (good TV not for you or me but for good ratings). I am not saying it is good TV …it is only good for high ratiings. Oh, help me out here guys. “Good TV” is only a termology and not literal.




    Wow i was sweating there. if she didnt come out on the 3rd set i was gonna find someonelse’s fingernails to chew 🙂

    i got ya surely lol


  26. Next week’s show should be quite entertaining because there is SO MUCH talent this year!!! I’m still a huge fan of Michael Grimm, but I also acknowledge how much competition he has–namely Jackie, Prince Poppycock, Michael Grasso, and Fighting Gravity. Who am I forgetting? I think the acts I mentioned will be the top five. I wish them all the best next week.


  27. Louise – you forgot 12-year-old dancers, Anna and Patryk. They have a huge following. Not sure if Prince Poppycock will make the Top 5. He still has to contend with Michael Grimm and Taylor Matthews.


  28. Oh my goodness, Scott! I believe you misread my comments about Jackie. Since we haven’t posted together very much, you may not know that I honestly love children! I have four young ones in my life. There was no way I was attacking Jackie. Her voice is astonishing, and she is a pretty girl.

    Like Vonnie, I don’t know much about this show. I have watched it a few times, but I thought the top prize was a stint in Las Vegas, perhaps 3 months! See? So, I was wondering if people would continue going to Jackie’s show without adding some modern or Disney music.

    I also thought perhaps you were a relative of hers because you truly appreciate her talent so much. I sorta of thought you were maybe yelling at me or something. :o(


  29. MCL, thank you so much for providing a detailed analysis of Jackie’s voice. It made me understand her performance better.

    The talent in Part II were at a disadvantage because they were so good, and there were many that could have been picked for the TOP 10. I do believe they got enough publicity to be hired by one of the Vegas clubs as an act within an act.

    Yes, this week had more talent which put a few at a disadvantage. As nice as he is, I wouldn’t have picked Jeremy VanSchoonhoven as a finalist. I really like Studio One Young Beast Society, but feel Fighting Gravity will outlast them.

    Vonnie, I also feel as you do – that Prince Poppycock has an excellent chance of being in the TOP 3. I thought if he won, people would want to see him again and again. I thought the prize was a lot longer than it was. It’s just how do you top Queen (Freddie Mercury)? I was very impressed. This is the first time we have watched every show this season. I am glad you asked those questions!

    (My husband had his follow-up appointment at the doctor’s and he is indeed cancer free. The surgery was a success. Praise God.)


  30. I do believe they got enough publicity to be hired by one of the Vegas clubs as an act within an act.

    Oops, got flustered a bit. I am talking about Michael and Ashleigh. They do have a following, so I would not be surprised if they did get hired to perform (with others) in Las vegas.


  31. KariAnn – So happy to hear that your husband is cancer-free. Both of you must be very relieved. The power of prayer and positive thinking!

    I hope Scott understands that you are a valuable and intelligent contributor to this blog.

    And, since I am on the topic, I would like to remind all readers to be respectful in their commentary.


  32. Hi Grammi Kari,

    That is wonderful news about your husband, our God is an Awesome God! Your family must be so relieved, I am so happy for you all.

    If I could pick my top 3 it would be; Prince Poppycock, Michael Grimm, and Fighting Gravity! From there I don’t know who I would want to win, I wish that they all could.

    I felt really sad for Alice last night, I think she should have made it to the top 10, I would have rather seen her there than the bicycle guy!

    Hey Scott,

    I bet your doing cartwheels this morning! Congratulations on Jackie making top ten…but please! Was there ever any doubt? She will be the one to beat! Do you have any predictions of who will be top 3, beside Jackie!!! 🙂


  33. How long does the winner get to headline the Vegas Show? Is it just once? They also go on tour like Idol too, right? How many go on the tour, just the top ten or less?

    Scott, you may as well keep your computer on just to answer my questions, Grammi Kari and I need to know these things…LOL 🙂


  34. grammie kerr and masterclass, that is why i said ‘i dont mean to sound rude’. i can come of as confronatational even when im trying not to be lol. as for jackie needing to put ‘pop’ in her performance, i have seen she has done some classic whitney houston and celine dion as well as her opera and music style songs, so i guess its not out of the question. i just think that the crowds she plays to love her as she is, i dont think she could bring downt the house with ‘my heart will go on’ like she does with opera. i actually want to see her do ‘memory’ from cats next. and no, im not a relative. 🙂 i just think if we are judging her it should be fair and i didnt think she should be dq’ed for having an album or performing in public, which many of the other contestants have done 🙂

    vonnie i was of course ecstatic! but just as happy grazzo got thru too…..he has come out of nowhere to become one of my favorites!

    i think it will og from top 10 to final 5, the week after. then the last 5 go head to head with one winner.

    if i had to guess at a final 5, i’d say, prince poppycock, jackie, micheal grimm fighting gravity, and for a 5th…….i dont know. other then kristina and ali this is a really tough group to chose from. i’d say grazzo but i wouldnt be shocked if anna and patrick made it thru…..they have been one of the better and most consistant acts the whole season and have been getting better every week.

    they are also another of my favorites 🙂

    i also wish alice had made the top 10. i think its disgusting they put such an easy bracket up in the first semifinals that an act like kristina and alli could sneak in and now alice is going home. 😦

    im pretty sure, about the vegas act, that it is a one time gig, and any vegas show the winner gets after that is indepedent of AGT. Terry fator, the vantriliquist/comedian/singer who won in 2007 got an independent and massive money deal to do a permanent vegas show. but people like bianca ryan and kevin skinner did one gig and went on to other things. i guess it all depends on who wins. im sure if poppycock or jackie wins they will get deals in new york or the such where opera plays alot better.

    ok i hope that answered all your questions 🙂


  35. oh the winner also does a 25 city tour with the rest of the top 10 after they do the vegas show.

    thats great news about your husband grammie 🙂


  36. Hey Scott,

    Thank you for answering all of my questions! This is my first year of watching this show…take me out of the idol pond and I am lost, LOL

    Yeah, I really am disappointed about Alice, I too think she sings alot better than the sisters, I understand their backstory, but I don’t think these shows should be about back stories…it should be about the talent only.


  37. Thank you, MCL – I appreciate your comments! Things are cool, Scott!

    Vonnie, I think the producers set it up so Monday would be a bit easier to get through. I am curious as to how this runs. I told my husband we will not get addicted to this show. No tapings what so ever. LOL!

    I have no idea who the TOP 5 will be!

    I am quite interested in what’s going on with Dancing With the Stars”!

    May everyone have a pleasant and safe holiday!


  38. Grammi Kari,

    The “Dancing” list has been given right…I can’t remember who all is on there, but have they given the pairings yet? I’m curious to see who poor Tony has to dance with this time. Why Oh! why can’t they give him someone again like Melissa…Errrrr! Poor guy always seems to get the wilting lilly’s…! 😦


  39. since hasselhoff used to be on america’s got talent, ive seen what kid of following he has. i expect him to go far on DWTS even if he cant dance at all…….

    btw i dont watch it 🙂


  40. Scott,

    DWTS is fun to watch…”the Situation” is going to be on there this year!!! That in it’s self should be hilarious!


  41. Just reading that Idol producer’s are still negotiating with JLo…she is a classic beauty, it may serve idol well having her on the panel. I have not read anything for a while on Stephen Tyler, does anyone know if he is still in the running?


  42. Addendum; if there are no judges left except for Randy…who’s judging the auditions? Auditions wrap up at the end of September, so who’s manning the table???


  43. I’m thinking that the celebrity judges will do their “thing” in the Fall. Like a Celebrity Judge tour? Just a guess!


  44. im sure idol could live without paula (and it did) but no simon is gonna tank the ratings……..unless they get someone big to replace him.

    hate him or loathe him simon’s critiques made a large part of the show entertaining when singers were underwhelming. i loved it when he told taylor hicks that his perfromance was ‘like a really bad wedding perfromance’ lol.

    btw i just read that talent goes from 10 to 4. so now im not really sure what to believe.


  45. MCL,

    So one would guess that for the auditions, there are guest judges judging! How will this work when they get to and past Hollywood rounds, the judges who are to “become” idols new judges would not have put through any of the contestants…this confuses my brain!!!

    If the new judges do not take over until top 24, they aren’t going to know who’s who or what’s what!!!


  46. Oh my goodness! We are covering a lot of terrority here – and I watch all the shows mentioned including So You Think You Can Dance? So, I must tell you that my younger daughter won two tickets on the raio to see the concert in October. She is taking me!! This is the same daughter that has attended two American Idol concerts – Seasons 7 & 9.

    My other daughter won tickets to a Detroit Tigers game this year where my Grandchildren were featured on the field with the players and umpires and 8 other kids. She also got us Lilith Fair concert tickets. I am blessed!

    MJ’s featured an article and I thought some would like this:

    “America ’s Got Talent” singing sensation Jackie Evancho fears she could lose the $1 million top prize to fellow opera singer Prince Poppycock.

    “He’s very theatrical,” says the 10-year-old prodigy. “He has a great voice and he’s funny. He’d be a perfect Vegas act.”

    The alter-ego of aspiring opera singer John Quale, Poppycock is what you might expect if Lady Gaga and Boy George had a child: a towering, powder-faced concoction of glam-rock, synth-pop and light opera wrapped up in flamboyant period costumes.

    Read more at the New York Post

    Here are the pairings for Dancing With the Stars:

    – Michael Bolton and Chelsie Hightower
    – Brandy and Maksim Chmerkovskiy
    – Margaret Cho and Louis Van Amstel
    – Rick Fox and Cheryl Burke
    – Jennifer Grey and Derek Hough
    – David Hasselhoff and Kym Johnson
    – Florence Henderson and Corky Ballas
    – Bristol Palin and Mark Ballas
    – Audrina Patridge and Tony Dovolani
    – Mike “The Situation” Sorrentino and Karina Smirnoff
    – Kurt Warner and Anna Trebunskaya
    – Kyle Massey and Lacey Schwimmer

    I think Tony is on Cloud Nine! LOL! I am happy to see Lacey and Chelsie, but no Dmitry Chaplin. *sob*


  47. Vonnie, American Idol has scheduled the last audition in Los Angeles for September 22. So, the actual JUDGES judging won’t be needed until the end of September. Right now, the contestants are seeing producers and interns. The announcement for the judges will probably be in about 10 days.

    It seems Steven Tyler and Jennifer Lopez are top contenders. Either one is fine with me, but together we end up with the focus on the judges again. Steven is outrageous and witty; Jennifer is pure glamour and has been a mentor. If the show can focus a bit more on the contestants and not so much on the judges, it might work. I am just not sure this will happen.

    Louise – you forgot 12-year-old dancers, Anna and Patryk.

    MCL, they are so polished – so perfect. I wouldn’t be surprised to see them appear as guests on So You Think You Can Dance? or Dancing With the Stars. They will be champions, no doubt about it.

    Scott, there is no doubt that Jackie WILL be in the Finals. She really is a terrific singer.

    Whew! Lots to say. Hehehe…


  48. Grammi Kari…Thank you for all of the Dancing and Idol info!!! 🙂

    I don’t know who the lady is who is dancing with Tony, but if you say he will be on cloud nine, she must be a great contender! I found it also interesting that Karina and the Situation were dancing partners, not sure there will be enough room on the dance floor for both their ego’s!!! Lol


  49. I think jennifer gray should be disqualified…….she already danced in ‘dirty dancing’ 😉


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