Hype heads home
Wednesday, July 24, marked the end of the road for one Hawaii-based act on NBC's "America's Got Talent." Josh Ulep, Mikey Ruiz and AJ Pak, who competed on the show as Hype (Ulep has roots in Waipahu-based Hypersquad and co-founded the Academy of Hype), were among the eight acts featured last week who failed to advance.
Of the dozen performances featured in the first "Elimination Show," only four — gymnast duo the KriStef Brothers, teen magician Collins Key and singers Brandon James and Anna Christine — were selected to move on to the semifinal rounds at Radio City Music Hall in New York. Of the four, three were supposed to have been selected by public vote, but a tie amongst the judges to decide the fourth and final spot meant the public's vote would be used again as a tie-breaker.
All that drama took place after Hype got the bad news, however. They were among the first six acts named when it came time for host Nick Cannon to announce who was moving on — and all six got cut.
"They started off good … and then it went flat," remarked Heidi Klum. Fellow judges Howard Stern, Mel B and Howie Mandel seemed to share her sentiment.
"From here, I just think this stage swallowed you up," Mandel told the three young men. "But you're great. We love you."
Hype's departure leaves just one person from Hawaii left with a chance at $1,000,000 and a headlining gig in Las Vegas. Two-time "America's Got Talent" competitor Ciana Pelekai was announced as one of the performers on next week's elimination show, which airs at 8 p.m. Tuesday, July 30, on KHNL in Hawaii.
Jason Genegabus is Entertainment Editor/Online at the Honolulu Star-Advertiser and has covered the local nightlife, music, bar and entertainment scenes since 2001. Contact him via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.