America’s Got Talent is a part of the global British ‘Got Talent’ series. The popular American reality television show on the NBC television network is a show featuring singers, dancers, magicians, comedians and other performers. What makes this show unique is, there is no age-barrier to participate in the show and so performers from various fields compete with each other for the prize of US$1 million. The show was first aired in June 2006.
The highlight of the show is the opportunity that it gives the amateur talents a platform as great to perform. The results are decided by an audience vote.
The creator of the current incarnation was Simon Cowell. It was going to be a part of 2005 British series called Paul O'Grady's Got Talent. However, the show got postponed due to O'Grady's split with broadcaster ITV. Though Simon Cowell is very much involved in the production of the show, he has never been a judge of the show because of his contract with Fox Network.
America’s Got talent actually starts with the selection process of the potential contestants. However, beside the auditions that are held in front of the judges, there are some untelevised auditions too, like, the auditions held in theaters. The audition round goes on for several months in different cities and are broadcast as well. The second round is also televised. The performances that have made it through the producers' audition then perform in front of the judges and a live audience.
The episode formats change in different seasons of the show. In the last season of America’s Got Talent, that is the Season 5, the format closely followed its predecessors, the Season 3 and 4. However, the Las Vegas Round has some major editions that gave the performers a second chance to showcase their act. Instead of submitting their acts on MySpace, the contestants were asked to submit their auditions on YouTube. There was an additional quarterfinal hosted for the purpose. Out of the twelve performers who made it to the quarterfinals, eleven were chosen by the judges and one was selected by online voters. Because of this additional quarterfinal, four performers were picked out to move on each week, instead of five. There was also the wild card show where the outstanding acts were summoned back by the judges to perform after being originally eliminated in either Las Vegas Week or previous quarterfinals. Thus, in 2010, the Season 5 semi-final of America’s Got Talent had 24 acts in total. Out of them, ten passed through to the Top 10 round. Six were eliminated based on their performances and only four were left to perform and compete in the final episode of America’s Got Talent.
"America's Got Talent," NBC's top rated summer series from "American Idol" producers FremantleMedia North America and Simon Cowell's SYCO Television has been able to draw amateur talents from all over the United States, from children to grannies, not only for winning the cash prize, but also to showcase their unique and unconventional talents. It has also been successful in bringing back the flavor of variety of the American culture with the diverse array of talents from performers of all ages. From singers, dancers and comedians to contortionists, impressionists, jugglers, magicians and ventriloquists, this is really a celebration of the true spirit of America.