The Best Musicians in ‘America’s Got Talent’ History

Jill O'Rourke
Corey Cesare
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Brian King Joseph America's Got TalentNBC

Although America’s Got Talent allows people of all talents to compete, it’s common for the singers to get a lot of the attention. But what sets AGT apart from shows like The Voice and American Idol is that instrumentalists also have a chance to shine on the stage. Let’s look back at some of the best musicians in AGT history.

The Best Musicians on AGT

1. Mia Morris

This 17-year-old competed on Season 17 of AGT as a one-woman band. She used a loop pedal to pull off her audition with an original song called “Gone My Way.” Mia didn’t need anyone else’s help to play guitar and drums and even harmonize with herself live. She made it to the Semifinals.

2. Feng E

In Season 15, this 12-year-old from Taiwan auditioned with his ukulele act after previously reaching the Finals of Asia’s Got Talent. He performed an electric version of The Weeknd’s “Can’t Feel My Face,” impressing the judges. Feng E made it to the Quarterfinals.

3. Medhat Mamdouh

This Egyptian musician shocked the judges in his Season 16 audition when he combined beatboxing with playing the recorder. Not only was the performance incredibly fast-paced, but it seemed like it would be impossible to make both sounds at once. Medhat unfortunately didn’t make it to the Quarterfinals.

4. Marcin Patrzalek

This Polish musician made a splash in Season 14 at 18 years old by playing some of the most fast-paced guitar you’ve ever seen. For his audition, he played a medley of Beethoven’s 5th Symphony and System of a Down’s “Toxicity.” Marcin made it to the Semifinals.

5. Brian King Joseph

This electric violinist made it to third place in Season 13 of the show. His performances of popular songs wowed the judges and audience. He shared in his audition that he was diagnosed with a nerve disease that takes feeling from his hands, making his appearance on the show even more inspiring.

6. Malik DOPE

In Season 15 of AGT, this drummer auditioned with an energetic routine that combined percussion with dance. The crowd went wild for his performance, and the judges gave him four “yes” votes to move on. Malik made it all the way to the Semifinals.

7. Alex Rivers

In Season 17, this violinist got a second chance to audition after Cowell complained about the track in his first performance. He came back the next day for a fun performance of Dua Lipa’s “New Rules.” The judges were impressed, sending him through. Unfortunately, he didn’t make it to the Quarterfinals.

8. William Close

William made it to third place in Season 7 with his earth harp act. He introduced it as the “world’s largest stringed instrument.” Although he didn’t win AGT, he and his Earth Harp Collective recently appeared on The World’s Best.

Honorable Mentions

1. Nuttin’ But Stringz

This violinist duo, comprised of brothers Damien and Tourie Escobar, finished in third place in Season 3. Their energetic and dramatic performances were a hit. Judge Piers Morgan told them they should be the winners of the season.

2. Lindsey Stirling

This violinist didn’t make it past the Quarterfinals of Season 5, but she’s gone on to amazing success in the years since. Her YouTube channel has over 13 million subscribers, and she performs in concert around the world. She was offered a spot on America’s Got Talent: The Champions, but turned it down.

3. Maestro Alexander Bui

This talented pianist was 16 when he auditioned for Season 5 of AGT on YouTube. The performance sent him straight to the Quarterfinals, and he ultimately made it to the Semifinals before being eliminated. His performance of “Flight of the Bumblebee” showed off some very fast fingers.

4. Emil & Dariel

These teenage brothers made it to the Top 12 of Season 9 with their cello act. They said they want to “reinvent the limits of what the cello can do,” and make their cellist grandfather proud. They performed rock covers from bands like the Rolling Stones and Aerosmith.

5. Dave the Horn Guy

In Season 1, this creative musician made it to the Semifinals by playing 25 bicycle horns strapped all over his body. Piers Morgan wasn’t impressed, but the other judges were. Dave later appeared on Britain’s Got Talent.

6. Natasha Le

This pianist was 8 years old when she appeared on Season 1 of AGT. She made it to the Semifinals and then returned to the competition as a Wild Card. Natasha started playing piano at age 3, and said she practiced every day for three hours. It was enough to impress the judges.

7. Michael Nejad

Who says you can’t use everyday objects as instruments? This musician made it to the Quarterfinals of Season 7 with his unique act. His audition consisted of him blowing into a broom and dustpan to make amazing music. He later played a baseball bat in the same way.

8. Cast in Bronze

This masked performer played the carillon, an instrument with 35 bronze bells, in Season 9. “I did not choose the carillon. The carillon chose me,” he said. He made it to the Quarterfinals, where he performed “Carol of the Bells.”

9. Adrian Romoff

Adrian was 9 years old when he auditioned for the show with his keyboard in Season 9. He shared in his audition that he was also interested in science, and skipped five grades. The judges were entertained by his talent and personality, and he made it to the Quarterfinals.

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