America's Got Talent Judges: Piers Morgan, Sharon Osbourne and Howie Mandel

Masterclass Discussion for America’s Got Talent Quarter-Finalists: Round One


Hello hello, everyone!

I have been enjoying the summer and the endless stream of visitors who inevitably land on my doorstep at this wonderful time of year.

Therefore, I apologize for the lack of updates here in the MCL community.

However, I am looking forward to the first America’s Got Talent Season 6 live show tonight.

Twelve acts from the chosen 48 will be performing and, tomorrow, once the votes are tabulated, 3 or 4 will advance to the finals. Wasn’t it 3 last season? An article from this site claims 4 (shrug). And for the life of me, I can’t find the answer on the AGT Official Site.

On Tuesday, the acts seen on stage will be Sandou Trio Russian Bar, Duo Aero, Fearless Flores Family, Anna Graceman, Dezmond Meeks, J Chris Newberg, Miami All-Stars, Snap Boogie, Squonk Opera, The Fiddleheads, Echo of Animal Gardens, and Those Funny Little People.

Tune in tonight at 9:00 P.M. on the peacock channel-NBC. Wednesday’s results show will feature Avril Lavigne singing her two hits “What the Hell” and “Smile”.

And don’t forget that judge Howie Mandel usually hosts a fun loving Twitter Party during the AGT telecast. However, it is a live show, so it may not happen. We shall see.

About Masterclass Lady

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

16 Responses to “Masterclass Discussion for America’s Got Talent Quarter-Finalists: Round One”

  1. I like Anna Graceman. There is a lot of star quality in that tiny package. She needs more developement, but she is gifted as an artist and an entertainer already. Very cute and engaging girl.

    I also enjoyed the Sandou Trio Russian Bar. I’m trying to figure out the trick to the bed of nails.

    An Idol side note.
    Pia Toscano’s first single, “This Time” was due to be released today but there has been a delay for some reason. Watch for it on iTunes. You can download it from iTunes, when it becomes available, through the web site and a donation to St Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital will be made.


  2. Thank you Gene for that update re Pia’s single. I am anxious to hear it.

    Your two favorites from AGT were mine as well. Anna Graceman’s musical ability is astounding. Incredible vocal skills and artistry.


  3. Not trying to be a nit-picker…didn’t there used to be some sort of etiquette about not being able to release an Album or single until the winner did; other than the coronation song! Was that a figment of my imagination?

    Not complainin’…just sayin’!

    Hey MCL, Gene W, Grammi Kari, and Anita….how’s everyone’s summer going?


  4. MCL,

    I hope to see a lot more of Anna. I thing she should put a small bed of nails under her piano bench to kick her game up a little.


  5. Hi Vonnie,
    Summer is going just fine except for the heat. How is yours? One of my daughters had a “horse wreck.” It ran her into a tree and she fell off. Banged her up pretty bad but she’s ok now. Tell your son that the Susuki Hammond model harmonica (Pro Master in black disguise) is the bomb. It’s like a custom harp right out of the box. Realy sweet in the key of “A.” Save up! I found good prices at Amazon.

    You are right about the tradition of album releases but I think the situation with Pia is a very positive sign for Idol. They listened to the market and they responded, which is highly unusual. Even though they have a long way to go to get the show where it needs to be, I believe they made a number of significant changes this year in an attempt to please the viewers.

    They did the online survey.

    They got rid of Ellen and Kara.

    There was less of the constant reminder of the contestant’s back stories. They told them during the audition rounds and that was it.

    Ryan lay to rest the inappropriate sexual references and general boyish behavior.
    There were no sway bots until the end of the season.

    We saw more about the contestant’s song choices and more of the preparation for the performances.

    The performances were presented in a more professional way than in the past with backing vocalist and musicians joining in on stage. There were special guest during the performances on a few occasions. Bob Babbitt during Motown week and the woman who co-wrote “Man in the Mirror,” and of course, Haley’s Dad come to mind, but I know there were others.

    Most of the group performances were actually good with a few of them contending for the best “moments” of the season. Haley and Casey’s “Moanin’” comes to mind, but there were others. Results night was no longer boring.

    We saw many former Idol contestants returning as guest entertainers this season. Something we have all hoped for. At the same time, there were fewer guest selling really bad albums on results night.

    I think, to be fair, we would have to say that the new judging panel was a success. The pre season press would have you believe that the show couldn’t survive without Simon but the new panel received rave reviews during the audition phase. Steven’s marks went down during the live shows and before the season was over, we were pretty much feed up with all of them. I could have strangled J Lo and Randy, but what’s new? They survived the season without Simon and I will bet that Idol will remain the ratings leader after all of the new kids have moved onto the block.

    Some of these things worked and some didn’t, but they were trying to make the show better to please the fans and to remain competitive in the new market that they find themselves in. I think rescuing Pia from a premature trip to the trash heap of Idol has-beens is another step in that direction. It didn’t affect the contest in any negative way; to the contrary, the controversy probably increased Idols viewership at the time she was cut. You might be even more irritated to know that she did a private corporate gig and was reportedly paid $100,000 for her efforts.

    I have heard the new song and to be honest, I don’t like it very much. She has been performing it on the tour. I haven’t been yet but you can see clips on You Tube.


  6. Gene W,

    Ewww! Sorry to hear about you daughter; horse wrecks are no fun, I’v had several gazzillion of them!!! They Hurt!

    The Son says thank you for the info; but how much harder is it to play in A vs C ie, finding music…???

    My summer is going good, just busy and HOT! Thank God for air conditioners!!!

    Yeah! I wasn’t sure how idol got around the “no release, until the winner does thingy”, which is no big problem, but it does seem to me that the winner still should get first shot at stardom and them the rest should follow…but who am I in the scheme of things???

    Pia wasn’t one of my favorites on the show and I don’t look for myself to run out and buy any of her music…that said, I have heard my boy Scotty on my local Country Station alot, they seem to really like his coronation song!

    Have you heard how the tour is going? I hear James is doing well, and that Lauren and Scotty are just too cute! Other than that I got nothin’…!


  7. I haven’t logged on to this site in several weeks because we were very busy getting ready for my daughter’s wedding last weekend. It was a small wedding on a mountaintop and fortunately it was a beautiful day.. But when I logged on today, it was great to read comments from some of the AI regulars!!! I’ve been watching AGT but agree with Kariann that the talent isn’t as terrific as it was last summer, but I also really like Anna. Hopefully it’s going to get better in the next two weeks.

    Hope everyone is doing well.


  8. Hi Louise,

    I bet the wedding was beautiful…best wishes to your daughter and her new husband!


  9. Thanks very much, Vonnie. Your best wishes are much appreciated.


  10. Hi Vonnie,
    Sorry for the delay.

    I figured that you might have a few muscle memories grooved in from horse mishaps. Now my dog has been bitten by a snake. She’s getting over it but it didn’t help my bank account any.

    Playing the A harmonica is the same as playing a C for the most part. The relationship of the ten holes to one another is the same and the holes that you can bend notes on or over blow are the same also. If you play a song in C tab, you will have changed the key down to A. If you were forced to use an A harp to play a song in C and wanted it to sound exactly the same as it did on your C harp, you would have to transcribe the tab. A couple of points: Harmonica players actually play harmonica(s). C is a good place to start but you will need others in the future. If you are playing with other instruments then you choose which key harmonica to play based on the key of the song and what “position” you are playing in. Blues is played in second position (2 keys off the song key) and folk is usually first, or the same as the song key. The other point is that tab is only useful as a “guide” for playing a familiar song. Most of it isn’t official and it lacks any information on timing. I seldom use tab but first position players may find it more useful. As for the A harp itself, it is a little harder to bend the first hole than a C harp because of the larger volume of air, but the model I mentioned plays so nice that it’s no problem. I also like the Hohner Blues Harp models that are less expensive than the Suzuki. All of the better instruments come in many keys and both of these are also available in C if he would prefer to stay with that for a while. I have three Cs myself, so you can’t have too many. Bb is a fun key as well. It has a nice bluesy tone to it. I play improvised blues mostly so I can use any key harp I like.

    I bought Pia’s song and I’m mixed about it. I seldom like diva songs anyway and I hope she will broaden her range in the future. The writing of this song isn’t that great and it doesn’t fit her very well. The intentional bad grammar and bad language along with a story line of poor Pia being dumped (yeah, right) just seemed like poor choices for her debut single. I decided to show the love anyway, but it won’t stay in the pod for long.

    Can’t wait to see Anna Graceman perform again. Check her out on You Tube and iTunes. She has over twenty original songs available for sale that she has written, played piano on and sang! She’s an ambitious and very talented 11 year old. I would like for her to record a few covers for sale to broaden her appeal with older audiences.

    This week’s talent reminded me of why I have never watched an entire episode of AGT, with the exception of last week’s show. The one remarkable act was “Silhouettes.” The motorcycle act was nothing more than a variation of a motorcycle “Trials” competition, except for the guy lying on the floor. Those guys wouldn’t have made it past the first round of a decent Trials event because their obstacles were not very difficult and there were a few dabs. A dab is when your foot touches the ground which is an instant disqualification.

    All that I have seen from the Idol tour are a few videos on You Tube. I haven’t seen Scotty featured in many of them. Most of his songs seem to be from Idol performances. The best videos are from the rehearsals for group numbers. They do “Stand By Me” and “Forget You.” The group also performs with Scotty on his rendition of “Gone.” They work well together as a group with a few surprise standouts. I will get to see the show on 7/30/11 in Nashville so I will give a better report then.


  11. Hi Louise,
    Congratulations to your daughter and her husband on their marriage and to you for surviving all of the preparation for it. I hope they will be very happy together.


  12. Thanks so much, Gene. Much appreciated!!!


  13. Gene – would you be willing to write a report of the Nashville show as a separate blog topic? Crediting you of course. Thank you!


  14. MCL,
    Sure, I’d love to give it a try. I’m honored to be asked.

    Shall I send it to your email address?


  15. Gene – I am honored to have your support. And, yes, you can send it to my email address: 🙂


  16. Gene W,

    Hey There!!! Yes! I do have few grooved in muscles memories, painful one’s I might add and some from not too long ago, LOL; Like the one in my not to far distant memory of when my gelding knocked me down ran over me and practically tore my ear from my head…or when the same horse crushed me into a fence post while trying to beat my mare through it and crushed my chest…those kinof stand out for me!!! I just wish that the muscle memories I need now would show back up; heels down, leg behind the girth, and so on!!! Those have vanished from all memory evidently!!!

    Thank you from the son for all of the harmonica info…he is much appreciative! Now, can I send him to your house to practice??? 🙂

    How’s your doggie doing? What kind of snake??? I have a German Shepherd and a Boxer, the German Shepherd walks right over top of snakes, the boxer hates them with a passion and goes right after them; them the shepherd decides, this must be fun, and joins in!!! Usually I end up feeling bad for the poor snake an haul the dogs off…now if it were a spider?!?!?! That creepy thing would be on its own!!!

    How exciting for you that you get to see the Idol Tour…looking forward to your recap…Darlene is going too!!! What fun, I am so jealous!!!

    I did get to see Anna on AGT, she is very good…!

    I wasn’t a fan of Pia on idol, so I probably won’t buy any of her music, unless it is a really good song!!!

    I’m having trouble with my sudden Country Music ~ ~ mid-life crisis ~ ~ infatuation…I listen so I can hear Scotty and they do play him alot…but OMGoodness the other stuff I gotta listen to to hear him!!! I don’t think I was cut out to be a floor stomping, knee slapping, YeeHaw, boot-scootin’, kind of gal…!!! 😦


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