Things are looking mighty different for the 15th season of "America's Got Talent" (airing Tuesdays at 8 p.m. ET on NBC and repeating Sundays at 9 p.m. ET). Sofia Vergara, who just wrapped up "Modern Family," joins the cast as a new judge, and the program has been required to adapt production to the age of COVID-19.
Fortunately, they were able to film a few auditions under the traditional format before normal production shut down in March. Now, the judges (Vergara, Simon Cowell, Howie Mandel and Heidi Klum) and host Terry Crews are filming at home and will be judging future auditions and the later rounds remotely, as the acts perform in isolation.
Fortunately, military kid Noah Epps got a chance to show off his dance moves on the big stage, and now the segment he taped in March will air on the June 16 episode. Noah's just completed the sixth grade and lives in Ashburn, Virginia, just outside Washington, D.C.
We've got a clip of his audition performance, where he uses hip hop dance moves as he plays the character of a marionette puppet.
We'll all have to tune in to see the judges' reactions, but Noah's performance is exactly the type of act that has traditionally wowed them.
Noah's mom is Natasha Feliciano, who served 11 years in the Navy and recently retired as an SH1 -- petty officer first class. She served around the world, and her family was stationed at Naval Station Norfolk and Naval Amphibious Base Little Creek in Virginia; Naval Base Yokosuka, Japan; Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickman, Hawaii; and Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Maryland.
Obviously, television is a little weird right now. Newscasters and competition reality judges are doing their own hair and makeup and using gear that sometimes makes them appear less polished than the average teenaged YouTube or Instagram influencer. After this is over, will we all be OK with having network television look more like social media? Or will everyone be eager to get back to the expensive production flourishes that we've come to expect?
Noah Epps fortunately got a chance to perform on a stage with big production values for his audition. The bet here is that he'll sail through to the later rounds, and we'll have a chance to see him make his routine work from home in future episodes of "America's Got Talent" (Quarantine Edition).
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