Over two big nights, twelve acts will do battle in the last of the semi-finals of Australia’s Got Talent, this weekend.
The stakes will be high as a mix of the very extraordinary, the ultra-gifted and the downright peculiar compete for the four remaining places in the Grand Final of the show that celebrates the unique and brilliant from all walks of life.
Competing in the remaining two semi-finals are:
SUNDAY, MARCH 6
IRMA AND SISKO
Irma and her dog Sisko have been dancing together for four years. They are self-taught. Irma’s two dogs are her babies – Sisko and Alexander (who is old and too sick to dance). They often have movie nights in and order pizza (Sisko’s favorite is vegetarian) and they have ice cream nights where the dogs eat Magnums. Irma provides lavish meals for her pets, including steak and fresh salmon. She will be hoping that Sisko plays ball during their semi-final performance.
JAN VAN DE STOOL
Australia’s Funniest Housewife
Jan left the judges in stitches during her audition performance. Born in a small village in the Netherlands, Jan now lives in Woy Woy on the NSW Central Coast. She works as a musical therapist at the local scout hall. From a young age she knew she had a powerful voice and a knack for making people laugh. Her biggest inspiration is her husband – and cousin – Pieter. Jan will be hoping some of her practical life advice and music hits the right note with the judges.
Comprised of five members, Equals is a high-energy, intense dance crew whose performances convey a message of being equal. The name Equals represents who they are, a diverse bunch. Sam (21) studies architecture, AB (23) studies education, Alex (22) is a theatre orderly at a hospital, Ben (23) is a performer at Movie World and Jack (19) is a dance teacher. The group have been together for just three months and formed especially for AGT. They have devised a high-energy routine for their semi-final performance, complete with twists, turns and flips.
CALLUM THE HEAVY METAL KID
Callum is a child prodigy. He has been teaching himself to play the guitar since he was seven. Now, at the age of 10, he is a member of Australian MENSA, has the spelling ability of a 30-year-old, the reading ability of a 17- year-old, and the language skills and memory of someone 25. He also knows the first 120 digits of Pi. Callum loves rock music and his idols are Metallica. He busks weekly, with his dad as his roadie, and has bought a baby grand piano and guitar with the earnings. His dream is to be a guitar-playing astrophysicist. He rocked it at the auditions and now this pint-sized genius with musical ability beyond his years is hoping to bring the house down with Metallica’s Enter Sandman.
THE SHAKE MAN
Samuel arrived in Australia in 1997 from Brazil and started taking part in Brazilian festivals and the Brazilian music scene in Sydney 10 years ago. There that he discovered he could move his body in a way that allowed him to shake – and It’s unlike any shaking you have ever seen. He gave up his construction worker job and now shakes fulltime. Will he shake up the semi-finals and impress the judges?
West Australian twins Shaheen, Manuell, 16, and their little brother Andre, 11, are brothers hoping to be as big as the Jackson 5. Shaheen and Manuel have been performing since the age of five. Young Andre would watch them and “always dream of being able to sing with them”. Eventually, he was old enough. The boys perform locally and have a big local fan base. They say Andre is the Harry Styles of the group because he has the cute factor. Their semi-final performance sees them take on one of the Jackson 5’s biggest hits.
MONDAY, MARCH 7
MINNIE COOPER AND HER TINY TEENY TAPPERS
Drag queen with dancers
Minnie Cooper, devised 13 years ago, is a singing and dancing drag queen backed up by a troupe of dancers.
After 20 years in theatre, Aaron created Minnie Cooper and enlisted the students he teaches at tap dancing school to be his back up. Minnie’s routine brought a smile to the judges’ face and she’s hoping her semi-final performance will be fabulous, daaarling!
Fourteen-year-old TJ captured the nation’s heart when he performed a drum solo – and danced up a storm – at the auditions. His infectious humour and confidence particularly won over Kelly, who used her Golden Buzzer to immediately put him through to the semi-finals. TJ was born in Ethiopia into a poor family. At the age of two, his dad died and TJ and his little brother AJ were put in an orphanage as their mother couldn’t afford to look after them. At four, he and his brother were adopted and he got his first toy, pair of shoes and his first proper meal. He moved to Australia and, because he couldn’t speak English, tried to talk to the indigenous Aussies in his native Ethiopian tongue as he thought they looked the same as him. While TJ hasn’t been back to Ethiopia since, and has a deep love of Australia, his heritage shines through in his performance, and he is hoping Uptown Funk will see him through to the Grand Final.
NOA is a jack of all trades in the music biz: singer, dancer, writer, choreographer. He is even writing a “fictional biography”. As a child, he appeared on Saturday Disney and is now the lead rapper in his group. Drawing on Lady Gaga and Madonna for inspiration, NOA believes in complete perfection. He had a No.1 on the Urban Download Charts for a mega mix he put together. Away from the stage, the lights and the extravagant costumes, NOA works at a bowling alley in Western Sydney and practices on the lanes whenever he can. For his semi-final performance, he will sing an original song.
Chris is a radio announcer on a country station in Brisbane. He got his first guitar at nine and for the first couple of years, he would play in the traditional style that he learnt from watching YouTube videos. Upon moving to the Torres Straits when he was 12, he started playing lap style after seeing the John Butler Trio playing Better Than on banjo. At 13, he moved to Brisbane to go to high school and lived with his nan. She was an important person in his life, who died in 2008. She had taught him many life lessons he lives by today, including acknowledging the owners of the land. As he says, “The land is just like another person’s house.” Watching Chris’s fingers dance over his guitar strings is deeply captivating and serene, and he is hoping his semi-final performance captures the judges’ imagination.
Rothomatic may have left many scratching their heads after his audition performance, but he connected with judge Eddie Perfect, who used his Golden Buzzer to put him through to the semi-finals. Rothomatic has been performing for five years and, as well as his unique robot act, he is also a drummer and does fire twirling, beat boxing and bubble performances. Will Rothomatic step it up for the semi-finals or will he fail to light up the stage?
Fourteen-year-old singer/songwriter Fletcher’s performance in the auditions went viral around the world and captured hearts from Australia to America. Fletcher has been performing since he was 11 and gigs on weekends at pubs and markets, Christmas Carol concerts and birthday parties. His younger brother Banjo died after being hit by a car while skateboarding just before Fletcher’s AGTaudition. They were extremely close and Fletch wrote a song about his brother to perform in his memory, called Infinite Child. He has a change of tempo in the semi-final performance and is hoping to rock the house.
AUSTRALIA’S GOT TALENT: SEMI-FINALS air 8.00PM SUNDAY & 7.30PM MONDAY ON NINE