America's Got Talent judge Howie Mandel has a lot of faith in Season 12 contestant Christian Guardino, and he's hoping the audience gets behind the 16-year-old singer.
On the latest episode of America's Got Talent, young Christian walked on stage and delivered one of the most memorable performances of the season. Christian was visibly nervous while talking to judges Simon Cowell, Heidi Klum, Mel B, and Howie, but upon launching into his act he cemented himself as one to beat, performing a cover of The Jackson 5's "Who's Lovin' You." The performance was full of impressive runs and emotive energy as the judges and the audience were visibly shocked.
The America's Got Talent audience erupted in applause and the judges gave him a standing ovation. After the judges gave their comments, Howie pressed the Golden Buzzer, which allows an act to automatically advance to the live shows later in the season.
Howie is steadfast in his love of Christian, making some pretty bold claims in a new video posted on the America's Got Talent YouTube page.
"Howie Mandel here, and I'm telling you that because I think I'm best known now on AGT for pressing the Golden Buzzer for Grace VanderWaal, who I still believe is going to be the biggest star ever to come out of any talent show anywhere," he says, referring to the 12-year-old singing ukulele player who won Season 11.
Howie called upon the Grace VanderWaal fans to get behind his Golden Buzzer act again for this season. The AGT judge described Christian as a similar young person who "has incredible talent. You wanna hug him!"
He said that it's possible that he could produce two America's Got Talent winners in a row, assuming Christian goes all the way. Since he is now automatically advanced to the live shows, Christian is already in the quarterfinals, which comprises of either 36, 48, or 60 acts depending on the season. Acts get to perform for America, who then vote for their favorites to make it to the semifinals, though the judges also get a chance to save some contestants from elimination. The process is repeated in the semifinals, and then the finals.
There have been three acts to receive the Golden Buzzer thus far on Season 12 of America's Got Talent. Before Christian, singing ventriloquist Darci Lynne got a Golden Buzzer from Mel B, while deaf singer Mandy Harvey got it from Simon.
America's Got Talent airs Tuesdays at 8 p.m. ET/PT on NBC.[Featured Image by Vivian Zink/NBC]