Detroit Youth Choir Wins More Money Than ‘AGT’ Winner Kodi Lee

Detroit Youth Chior Gets 1 million dollars AGT

Last week, Detroit Youth Choir came in second place in Season 14 of America’s Got Talent. Winner Kodi Lee will be the recipient of AGT‘s million-dollar prize and Las Vegas show, but DYC isn’t walking away empty-handed. In fact, they’ll receive $1 million as well.

The money won’t come from America’s Got Talent, but rather from several Detroit organizations who contributed to a million-dollar endowment for the choir. This was announced Friday at a homecoming for the group, held at Campus Martius Park.

Finale of America’s Got Talent, remember who won?

Detroit Youth Choir To Receive $1 Million Even After Not Winning AGT

Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan made the announcement. “I was watching you guys and you and Kodi Lee are on that stage, and my heart’s in my throat,” he told the choir. “When they announced it was Kodi Lee, I was a little disappointed for a second, but I was like, ‘He deserves a million dollars; he was great.’ The only thing I thought was unfair was there should’ve been two first prizes.” 

According to Detroit Free Press, Duggan worked to create the endowment with Wendy Lewis Jackson of the Kresge Foundation, as well as Tonya Allen of the Skillman Foundation. As Allen said, “This fund is a way for Detroiters to celebrate and grow the genius of our children.”

Detroit Youth Choir Gets Their Own Grand Prize From The City Of Detroit

It’s interesting to point out that DYC is likely to receive $1 million before AGT winner Kodi Lee. Winners of the show’s million-dollar prize can choose to receive it in a financial annuity over 40 years, or take the current cash value of that annuity. In other words, they don’t get $1 million as soon as they win.

This November, DYC will also get to perform in Las Vegas with Kodi Lee and other popular contestants, including V. Unbeatable, Ryan Niemiller, and Tyler Butler-Figueroa. So in a way, they’ve received their own version of the grand prize.

Detroit Youth Choir wow in America’s Got Talent

Is This Fair To The Other ‘AGT’ Acts That Did Not Win?

After Detroit Youth Choir came in second place in AGT‘s finale, fans of other acts like Indian dance group V. Unbeatable questioned whether they deserved such a high ranking in the competition.

Although it might not seem fair to fans of other acts for DYC to receive such a generous consolation prize, it’s important to remember that this endowment does not come from AGT. It’s Detroit’s prerogative to donate to the choir.

As for the Las Vegas show, it’s standard for other acts to join the winner in their show. Last year, Shin Lim’s headlining show also featured runners-up Zurcaroh, as well as other acts from Season 13.


Jill O'Rourke
Jill O'Rourke

Jill O’Rourke is a contributor at Talent Recap, writing news stories and recaps for shows like ‘AGT,’ ‘The Voice,’ and ‘American Idol.’ She graduated from the University of Georgia with a degree in English and Film Studies, and has been writing about pop culture since 2012, with previous bylines at Crushable and A Plus. Jill spends her free time binge-watching sitcoms and daydreaming about life as a hobbit

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