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AGT 2018: Simon Cowell bursts into tears after emotional performance

Simon Cowell made his reputation as TV’s Mr Nasty.

But the hard-nosed judge showed his sensitive side as he broke down in tears and was barely able to talk about his respect for singer Michael Ketterer who has rescued five sons, three from a squalid meth lab, one who was homeless, and another with cerebral palsy.

Simon had already given his golden buzzer in earlier rounds to the paediatric mental health nurse, and initially tried to wave away host Tyra Banks’ questions after Michael’s quarterfinal performance of James Bay’s Us, telling her: ‘Come back to me.’

Emotional: Simon Cowell showed his sensitive side as he broke down in tears and was barely able to talk about his respect for singer Michael Ketterer

Emotional: Simon Cowell showed his sensitive side as he broke down in tears and was barely able to talk about his respect for singer Michael Ketterer

Saint: The singer has rescued five sons, three from a squalid meth lab, one who was homeless, and another with cerebral palsy

Saint: The singer has rescued five sons, three from a squalid meth lab, one who was homeless, and another with cerebral palsy

But Tyra stuck to her guns, telling him: ‘I’m not going to come back. I know you’re emotional and I want you to talk through it.’

Struggling to talk through tears, Simon stammered: ‘As a dad I kinda get… I couldn’t… I can’t imagine what you’ve done… ‘

He finally said: ‘The fact you’re on this show and you really need this and our a really, really special guy. There’s something about you.’

Loss for words: Simon had already given his golden buzzer in earlier rounds to the pediatric mental health nurse, and initially tried to wave away Tyra¿s questions

Loss for words: Simon had already given his golden buzzer in earlier rounds to the pediatric mental health nurse, and initially tried to wave away Tyra’s questions

Beautiful moment: Struggling to talk through tears, Simon stammered: ‘As a dad I kinda get… I couldn’t… I can’t imagine what you’ve done… ‘

‘Simon, that is one of the most beautiful moments I have ever seen of you, that vulnerability and that beauty,’ Tyra told him. ‘And that’s what a lot of people don’t know about Mr Cowell is that he is a big soft papa.’

Mel B — who was shown clearly wiping away tears at the end of the performance — seemed equally overwhelmed, saying ‘why me?’ when Tyra said it was her turn to talk and explaining: ‘I’m trying to doodle so I don’t cry too much.’

‘You’re just an incredible person, and incredible human being,’ she finally told him, her voice cracking with emotion. ‘To do what you’ve done, adopting all these kids and giving them life and then our voice sings such truth and honesty… you don’t have the best voice but you’re captivating.

Respect: Simon gave the talented singer a standing ovation

Respect: Simon gave the talented singer a standing ovation

Standing room only: The judges panel was obviously taken by the moment

‘I’m not gonna cry — because I’ve already cried — I cried at the first word you said.’

Mel was then shown looking away from the camera, presumably hiding yet more tears.

Earlier, Michael’s adopted sons had talked in heartbreaking pre-packaged interviews, with the three brothers saying how their old parents ‘acted like they just wanted to hurt us.’

‘He’s a super fun dad,’ they said of Michael, with another saying: ‘My dream is to be like my dad.’

‘We just need more men like you,’ Heidi Klum told him, with Howie Mandel adding: ‘More humans like you. You deserve to be here, this is not a sob story, this is a happy story. People should be led and inspired by who you are and how you are.’

Wow factor: Ketterer did James Bay¿s Us as earlier his adopted sons had talked in heartbreaking pre-packaged interviews, with the three brothers saying how their old parents 'acted like they just wanted to hurt us.

Wow factor: Ketterer did James Bay’s Us as earlier his adopted sons had talked in heartbreaking pre-packaged interviews, with the three brothers saying how their old parents ‘acted like they just wanted to hurt us.

Asked how it felt to make Simon cry, Michael said: ‘I know I think he gets it. These are my babies and I have given my entire life to this.’

A child was also central to the final quarterfinal’s other emotional highlight — this time an unborn one.

Husband and wife singer-songwriters Us the Duo performed with Carissa Alvarado almost eight months pregnant — and a song dedicated to their unborn baby girl.

Mel B admitted it made her ‘really teary’ to hear their song Like I Did With You which was equally an homage to there own love for each other.

Beautiful moment: Husband and wife singer-songwriters Us the Duo performed with Carissa Alvarado almost eight months pregnant ¿ and a song dedicated to their unborn baby girl

Beautiful moment: Husband and wife singer-songwriters Us the Duo performed with Carissa Alvarado almost eight months pregnant — and a song dedicated to their unborn baby girl

Stunning: Mel B admitted it made her 'really teary¿ to hear their song Like I Did With You which was equally an homage to there own love for each other

Stunning: Mel B admitted it made her ‘really teary’ to hear their song Like I Did With You which was equally an homage to there own love for each other

‘The song talks about me wanting the baby to be just like her, because I know as soon as I hold the baby in my arms that I’m going to look into her eyes and fall in love with her just like I did with her mama,’ Michael Alvarado had explained earlier: ‘And I can’t wait to sing that for America to hear.’

The lyrics included lines like ‘I hope and pray my baby girl is just like you,’ with Michael again singing: ‘If she’s anything like her mama I’ll fall in love with her just like I do with you.’

‘We hope she has her daddy’s hair,’ they then sang, stifling chuckles in the song about ‘it’ll be us three.’

Sweet: 'The song talks about me wanting the baby to be just like her, because I know as soon as I hold the baby in my arms that I¿m going to look into her eyes and fall in love with her just like I did with her mama,¿ Michael Alvarado had explained earlier

Sweet: ‘The song talks about me wanting the baby to be just like her, because I know as soon as I hold the baby in my arms that I’m going to look into her eyes and fall in love with her just like I did with her mama,’ Michael Alvarado had explained earlier

Skill: Heidi Klum called them ¿just the cutest couple¿

Skill: Heidi Klum called them ‘just the cutest couple’

Funnyman: 'I'd like to thank you for inviting us all to your gender reveal party,¿ Howie joked

Funnyman: ‘I’d like to thank you for inviting us all to your gender reveal party,’ Howie joked

‘We’re going to have to change the name to Us The Trio now, aren’t we,’ Simon Cowell smiled, after host Tyra Banks also told them: ‘We’ve got three performers on this stage!’

Simon added: ‘’I love the song, I love you two, I am praying America puts you through to the semifinals because I think you deserve it.’

Heidi Klum called them ‘just the cutest couple,’ while Mel said: ‘That actually made me really emotional. You look gorgeous pregnant.

‘I loved that you wrote the song to your baby girl, it made me really teary. I loved it.’

‘I’d like to thank you for inviting us all to your gender reveal party,’ Howie joked, also quipping about them bringing ‘our production your reproduction’ and calling it ‘a wonderful thing.’

The couple was shown in tears themselves in pre-performance footage during an ultrasound appointment.

‘Hearing the heartbeat for the first time, oh my gosh, as musician’s we get to hear so many beautiful sounds but by far that is my favorite sound that I’ve ever heard,’ Carissa said.

Power: When Accordion Hans performed a flamboyant version of the Spice Girls¿ Spice Up Your Life

Power: When Accordion Hans performed a flamboyant version of the Spice Girls’ Spice Up Your Life

Energetic: Mel, meanwhile, admitted there was a huge surprise in the performance ¿ finally realizing it was her own song being performed

Energetic: Mel, meanwhile, admitted there was a huge surprise in the performance — finally realizing it was her own song being performed

‘Having a baby come into this world changes the way I think about things,’ Michael said. ‘Being a musician definitely has ups and downs financially, you never know when a paycheck is going to come.’

Carissa added: ‘That’s why America’s Got Talent is so important to us — this baby is coming whether we are stable or not.’

When Accordion Hans performed a flamboyant version of the Spice Girls’ Spice Up Your Life, Heidi joked: ‘Mel, did Elton John and you have a baby and you didn’t tell me about it?’

‘If Heidi Klum and Liberace had a son that’s who this would be,’ Howie quipped. ‘This is my favorite act tonight, Hans down.’

Mel, meanwhile, admitted there was a huge surprise in the performance — finally realizing it was her own song being performed.

Sweet talker: Joseph O¿Brien ¿ the 20-year-old self-confessed ¿hopeless romantic¿ who has never been kissed ¿ sang a self-penned song ¿bout a girl back home that I had a crush on¿

Sweet talker: Joseph O’Brien — the 20-year-old self-confessed ‘hopeless romantic’ who has never been kissed — sang a self-penned song ‘bout a girl back home that I had a crush on’

Questioning crew: Simon put him on the question, asking the girl¿s name, with Tyra also chanting ¿Say the name!¿ with Joseph finally shyly revealing: Her name¿s Briana¿

Questioning crew: Simon put him on the question, asking the girl’s name, with Tyra also chanting ‘Say the name!’ with Joseph finally shyly revealing: Her name’s Briana’

Witty: ¿You¿re probably gonna hook up with Briana now, so that¿s the good news,¿ Simon told him

Witty: ‘You’re probably gonna hook up with Briana now, so that’s the good news,’ Simon told him

‘I was saying to Howie, “What song is it, what song is it?”’ she revealed. ‘And Spice Girls, we write our own material — and I didn’t even recognize my own song! But you killed it.’

Hans continued flirting with Simon, who likened it to ‘watching a horror movie that you think, “I shouldn’t enjoy it but I do,”’ insisting: ‘For some reason I loved it.’

‘Simon, I promise you I’ll perform it on our wedding night,’ Hans winked.

When Heidi spoke German as part of her praise, Hans pretended to translate, turning to Tyra and telling her: ‘She is saying she cannot tell who of us is the supermodel here. We could be sisters.’

Joseph O’Brien — the 20-year-old self-confessed ‘hopeless romantic’ who has never been kissed — sang a self-penned song ‘bout a girl back home that I had a crush on.’

‘Are you together?’ Mel asked of the girl in question, with Joseph saying: ‘I wish! That would’ve been nice.’

Simon put him on the question, asking the girl’s name, with Tyra also chanting ‘Say the name!’ with Joseph finally shyly revealing: Her name’s Briana.’

‘You’re probably gonna hook up with Briana now, so that’s the good news,’ Simon told him, getting boos from the audience as he then admitted: ‘The not so good news is I personally didn’t love the song. I’m not sure that that performance is gonna get you through.’

Tense: Knowing Aaron Crown had already used Howie and Heidi in his previous daredevil acts, Tyra joked: ¿So Mel B and Simon, please be afraid¿

Tense: Knowing Aaron Crown had already used Howie and Heidi in his previous daredevil acts, Tyra joked: ‘So Mel B and Simon, please be afraid’

Ouch: Instead, Howie was once again brought up onstage, having to hide a knife under one of five paper bags that were then shuffled, with Aaron slamming his hand down on  empty bags

Ouch: Instead, Howie was once again brought up onstage, having to hide a knife under one of five paper bags that were then shuffled, with Aaron slamming his hand down on empty bags

Heidi had agreed, telling him: ‘It didn’t knock me out of my seat, but it was sweet.’

‘It was about love!’ Mel protested. ‘I want someone to write a song like that about me!’

She had insisted: ‘Hopefully, Briana hears this song because the lyrics were flawless. I was actually tearing up a little bit.’

Knowing Aaron Crown had already used Howie and Heidi in his previous daredevil acts, Tyra joked: ‘So Mel B and Simon, please be afraid.’

Instead, Howie was once again brought up onstage, having to hide a knife under one of five paper bags that were then shuffled, with Aaron slamming his hand down on the empty bags.

Simon was finally brought up for the last bag, telling Aaron: ‘You know my son is in the audience? You better get this right.’

Howie had picked which bag he should hit — with Aaron moving the judge’s hand at the last second to the other spot, showing the knife where Simon had almost slammed his hand down onto.

Mel had buzzed before the end, however, telling Aaron: ‘I do adore you and I love your presence but for me it took too long.’

Heidi agreed, saying over boos from the audience: ‘Tonight for me also it wasn’t as thrilling.’

Powerful: Singer Christina Wells was among the most impressive performers of the night

Powerful: Singer Christina Wells was among the most impressive performers of the night

Wow factor: Simon predicted singer Christina Wells will get a flood of offers for big Broadway shows after her performance of Jennifer Hudson¿s I Am Changing

Wow factor: Simon predicted singer Christina Wells will get a flood of offers for big Broadway shows after her performance of Jennifer Hudson’s I Am Changing

Sweet: Simon said; 'Tonight Christina you were the diva I¿ve always believed you were, and I mean that as the biggest compliment. You owned the stage, you owned the song. Anyone who ever put you down, after that they can you-know-what off'

Sweet: Simon said; ‘Tonight Christina you were the diva I’ve always believed you were, and I mean that as the biggest compliment. You owned the stage, you owned the song. Anyone who ever put you down, after that they can you-know-what off’

‘I think I was amazing,’ Howie then joked. ‘So if they wanna see me move on you’ve gotta vote.’

Simon predicted singer Christina Wells will get a flood of offers for big Broadway shows after her performance of Jennifer Hudson’s I Am Changing, telling her: ‘Tonight Christina you were the diva I’ve always believed you were, and I mean that as the biggest compliment. You owned the stage, you owned the song. Anyone who ever put you down, after that they can you-know-what off.’

Mel said that the performance ‘made me cry,’ telling Christina: ‘Your voice is sensational, your range is just massive.

‘I’ve never heard that song before but I understood every single lyric because you sang it from your heart — and damn you can sing!’

Before hitting the stage, Christina had spoken of how she was inspired by her mother’s devotion during a tough upbringing, saying: ‘There were times when the rest of the world didn’t believe in me. There were times when I didn’t believe in myself. But my mom has always believed in me.’

Howie then told her: ‘After that, and I think I’m speaking for an entire country, I think we all believe in you now.’

Strong: Opera singer Daniel Emmet called it ¿beyond my wildest expectations¿ to be brought back as a wild card, and was left teary-eyed at the standing ovation and high praise from all four judges

Strong: Opera singer Daniel Emmet called it ‘beyond my wildest expectations’ to be brought back as a wild card, and was left teary-eyed at the standing ovation and high praise from all four judges

Burning up: Simon joked about how it was all up to him that he was back, then quipped of his stage set: ¿Your voice was so powerful that the stage lit up in fire behind you. Literally'

Burning up: Simon joked about how it was all up to him that he was back, then quipped of his stage set: ‘Your voice was so powerful that the stage lit up in fire behind you. Literally’

Christina then pointed to her ‘white mama’ in the audience, telling her: ‘You showed me what grace and dignity looked like, so I hope today I made you proud.’

Opera singer Daniel Emmet called it ‘beyond my wildest expectations’ to be brought back as a wild card, and was left teary-eyed at the standing ovation and high praise from all four judges.

‘If I had one more golden buzzer I would push it right now!’ Heidi told him. ‘I just love you, I really, really do.’

Simon joked about how it was all up to him that he was back, then quipped of his stage set: ‘Your voice was so powerful that the stage lit up in fire behind you. Literally.

‘But hats off to you. That is what I call a moment.’

Mel called the key change ‘everything,’ while Howie joked: ‘It was surreal — I feel like my parents took me to see Pavarotti doing Aerosmith. You make me feel a lot classier than I actually am.’

Pulling at the strings: Violinist Brian King Joseph ¿ who has a nerve disease that is making his hands numb and could force him to stop playing ¿ also got a standing ovation from the judges

Pulling at the strings: Violinist Brian King Joseph — who has a nerve disease that is making his hands numb and could force him to stop playing — also got a standing ovation from the judges

Ringing endorsement: Simon told him ¿You deserve to be in the next round'

Ringing endorsement: Simon told him ‘You deserve to be in the next round’

Clearly shocked trying to take in the praise, Daniel said: ‘I’m thinking this is the greatest experience of my life and I’m so lucky.’

Violinist Brian King Joseph — who has a nerve disease that is making his hands numb and could force him to stop playing — also got a standing ovation from the judges, with Mel telling him: ‘You make me so emotional because you give it all, your everything.

‘I know your pain level is always at a number 10 and you just kill it every time we see you. You gave us a proper show tonight.’

‘What you are going through is like a singer losing their voice,’ Simon stressed. ‘But for all the time we’ve met you you’ve always been positive and you’ve made us feel amazing. In fact, you were so passionate you broke a ton of strings on that. But that means you wanted it.

‘You deserve to be in the next round.’

Howie, meanwhile, joked: ‘One of my biggest memories is when I was a little Jewish boy my parents took me to see Fiddler on the Roof — this is so much better, it really is.’

Tyra then quipped after Brian said his hands were completely numb: ‘Well everyone at home is not feeling numb, they are feeling you I am sure.

Range: Chicago dance crew The Future Kingz ¿ whose youngest member is just seven ¿ started the show with a standing ovation from Simon

Range: Chicago dance crew The Future Kingz — whose youngest member is just seven — started the show with a standing ovation from Simon

Showing their stuff: Mel B stressed: 'I love your unity and loyalty and I love how cool and edgy you are¿

Showing their stuff: Mel B stressed: ‘I love your unity and loyalty and I love how cool and edgy you are’

Chicago dance crew The Future Kingz — whose youngest member is just seven — started the show with a standing ovation from Simon who said it was not just for the ‘performance’ but ‘for who you are as people.’

‘Because you are some of the nicest guys we have had on the show, genuinely,’ he told them. ‘The was liking a very cool commercial — that’s the best compliment I can give.’

He then gave a sarcastic ‘boo’ when Mel B followed up by admitting: ‘Some of the choreography I wasn’t impressed with.’

She quickly stressed: ‘I love your unity and loyalty and I love how cool and edgy you are.’

Heidi, meanwhile, said: ‘Thanks for bringing the party to the Dolby night.’

High-tech: Siberian dance crew UDI Dance insisted they had a powerful reason to do well in the show

High-tech: Siberian dance crew UDI Dance insisted they had a powerful reason to do well in the show

Ouch: But their high-tech routine blending movements with computer graphics had Simon warning: 'This wasn¿t as good as your first audition

Ouch: But their high-tech routine blending movements with computer graphics had Simon warning: ‘This wasn’t as good as your first audition

Siberian dance crew UDI Dance insisted they had a powerful reason to do well in the show.

‘I grew up in an orphanage and was all alone, but I found dance and dance gave me my family,’ one of the leaders said. ‘Together we found a dance school for children like us. We believe these children can change the world. Seeing these children succeed means everything to us.

‘America’s Got Talent is our chance to show them that anything is possible.’

But their high-tech routine blending movements with computer graphics had Simon warning: ‘This wasn’t as good as your first audition.

‘I’ve seen acts do this better. If you are to get through to the next round you’ve really got to step things up. I didn’t love it, I’m sorry.’

Flying high: Tyra proudly bragged how the high-flying dance act, Zurcaroh, who were her golden buzzer pick¿s audition had become the ¿most viewed online in AGT history, with over 320 million views. I got the eye¿

Flying high: Tyra proudly bragged how the high-flying dance act, Zurcaroh, who were her golden buzzer pick’s audition had become the ‘most viewed online in AGT history, with over 320 million views. I got the eye’

Stacked: The judges seemed equally wowed with the group¿s quarterfinal, with Simon insisting: ¿I didn¿t like it¿ I loved it. This is one of the best live performances I've ever seen on an America¿s Got Talent'

Stacked: The judges seemed equally wowed with the group’s quarterfinal, with Simon insisting: ‘I didn’t like it… I loved it. This is one of the best live performances I’ve ever seen on an America’s Got Talent’

Mel and Heidi both agreed with him, with Howie saying he loved it as he ‘loves games and video games, so you had me.’ 

Tyra proudly bragged how the high-flying dance act, Zurcaroh, who were her golden buzzer pick’s audition had become the ‘most viewed online in AGT history, with over 320 million views. I got the eye.’

The judges seemed equally wowed with the group’s quarterfinal, with Simon insisting: ‘I didn’t like it… I loved it. This is one of the best live performances I’ve ever seen on an America’s Got Talent.’

Vroom vroom: Rob Lake had a fun performance in which he was seen caged on a motorcyle

Vroom vroom: Rob Lake had a fun performance in which he was seen caged on a motorcyle

Presto change-o: He was quickly seen in the audience on the same bike leaving the judges bewildered

Presto change-o: He was quickly seen in the audience on the same bike leaving the judges bewildered

Heidi agreed, saying: ‘If there was ever an act ready for Las Vegas, it’s you guys. You are perfect. My goosebumps won’t go down.’

Howie told them ‘they took dance to a whole new level,’ adding: ‘You know how they say less is more? You proved them wrong. More is more.

‘You had acrobatics, you had dancing, you had danger, and you had a male Victoria’s Secret model — that’s amazing!’ he joked of one of the men dressed as an angel. 

Fantastic four: The field will be cut to seven on Wednesday night's episode of America's Got Talent which airs on NBC at 8pm

Fantastic four: The field will be cut to seven on Wednesday night’s episode of America’s Got Talent which airs on NBC at 8pm

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk


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