AMERICA'S GOT TALENT,  Howard Stern, Nick Cannon, Sharon Osbourne, Howie Mandel

Virginia Sherwood/NBC

With 24 acts going into the semifinals, it's no surprise that America's Got Talent is splitting the performances into two episodes.

Regardless, we got to kick-off the beginning of the end tonight, so let's get straight into who performed and will be facing eliminations tomorrow.

The show started off strong with an impeccable performance of "Ave Maria" by Andrew De Leon, which earned him a standing ovation from the crowd, but still got some flack from the judges. Howie Mandel brought up the fact that De Leon doesn't have any formal training and Sharon Osbourne said he needs to lose the gothic look if he wants to be taken seriously. Geez!

Todd Oliver and his "talking dog" were next. Oliver tried a different tactic by setting up his act as a late-night talk show and his pup was the guest. Cute idea. Regardless of what people may think of this act, the judges absolutely love it. "You are a headline act. Your material was spot on for this audience. You had them in the palm of your hand," Howard Stern said.

The crowd seemed to love watching Donovan and Rebecca, a very good-looking and strong married couple, show off their acrobatic strength and skill. But then again, it may have been their barely-there costumes.

A 14-year-old Edon Pinchot got the attention of all the young girls in the crowd when he sang One Direction's "What Makes You Beautiful." The person he didn't impress? Stern, who was "a little bit bored by that song." Hey, take that up with the writers.

The Scott Brothers did a dance routine that didn't seem to resonate with anybody once it was done. Sorry. Nothing too memorable here.

Freaky alert!  Eric Dittelman, known as just "Dittelman," is a mind reader. No, seriously. He told Stern to color-in a sketch of his face on an easel and Dittelman produced a drawing that was almost identical to what Stern did! Howard said, "He deserves to go through."

Another standing ovation was given to contortionist and street dancer Turf, who included more dancing into tonight's routine. Stern, who has shown Turf love from the start, told the contestant, "I'm pulling for you."

Unfortunately, the beautiful voice of Bria Kelly wasn't enough for the judges. After performing Pink's "Perfect," the judges told her that she lacked emotion and needs stronger stage presence. 

Joe Castillo was entertaining with his sand art creations. Especially when he was able to morph his art from one bird into two hands clasping and ultimately into two faces—one of them being Jesus. Kudos, sir.

"The largest stringed instrument in the world" graced the AGT stage tonight when William Close played his giant Earth Harp. The judges absolutely loved it.

After Mandel picked a topic, Tom Cotter did what he does best—tell jokes. But the best part was they were actually funny! He cracked about "the best 28 semesters" of his life.

Last to perform was the theatrical hip-hop group Academy of Villains, who were great to close the show with all their lasers, smoke and red balloons. And although Sharon thought it was "incredible," Stern had to come in and say, "I got a little bit bored through it and was wishing it would be over."


Who do you hope to see move to the finals? Sound off in the comments!

See pics of AGT's biggest OMG moments

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