MELISSA: It’s an exciting night here at America’s Got Talent. Ten contestants are preparing for their final performances, one of them being Mandy Harvey! How exciting! I’m looking forward to talking with all the contestants and judges about how they feel.
MELISSA: I have a fun challenge. I want you to express yourself, how you feel, only using body language and gestures.
[Mandy takes a restful sigh, and then screams out of excitement.]
MELISSA: Now mind elaborating why you feel that way?
MANDY: I feel, relieved. I feel overwhelmed. I feel happy. I feel so many different things all over the place. And I can’t really consolidate all that into one thought. I’m just really hoping that my story, my song resonates with other people, and encourages them to move forward and stand up for themselves, regardless of failure. Who cares? You can stand strong. You can move forward. You can take steps forward yourself. You can see how beautiful the world can be. It was really hard at first, but you can do it!
[CLIP of Mandy Harvey singing:
I’m so close that I can taste it
Yes I’m moving on, I’m moving on]
MELISSA: It was definitely very powerful tonight to watch. I loved watched you. And I spotted-- I love being barefoot. I’m a barefoot girl. So I wanted to ask you, you tend to take off your shoes--
MANDY: Shoes? Who needs ‘em!
MELISSA: Right, who needs ‘em! So after you took off your shoes, how does this help internally with your music? I’m curious.
MANDY: What happens is when the piano is being played, it sends off beats through vibrations, so I feel that through my feet. When I play my ukulele, I’m able to time it all together. And I can feel myself singing on the vibrations a little bit.
MELISSA: Through your feet?
MANDY: I can tell whether I’m loud or too quiet, this can give me information of the dynamics.
MELISSA: Wow. Another perfectly good reason to go barefoot! How did you feel about the judge’s comments tonight?
MANDY: I really loved how Simon emphasized pushing the pity aside, because I didn’t want - you don’t want that. You want people to see you and say, “Deaf people can do it, so what?” He was listening to the music, to the writing, my voice. And that means it all. I’m not looking down on that because I’m am “sad deaf girl.” I’m not here because I’m sad. I’m here because of my talent. It doesn’t matter if you hear or not. Seriously, who cares?
MELISSA: Right. Amazing. I’m excited to see what happens tomorrow night!
MANDY: I’m excited to see YOU!
MELISSA: Same here!
[Mandy & Melissa hug.]
MELISSA: Remember the first question I asked Mandy? I asked the same question to the hearing contestants and some judges. Check out their reactions.
MELISSA: Express how you feel right now, with no words just using your body language and gestures.
[Melissa is with Howie Mandel, Judge on America’s Got Talent]
HOWIE: Just, uh, excitement?
[Howie does a heart pounding movement.]
HOWIE: My heart is like, pounding with joy for everything that I’ve seen.
[Melissa is with Heidi Klum, Judge on America’s Got Talent. Heidi smiles BIG and points at her smile. Melissa laughs]
[Melissa is with Darci Lynn Farmer, Ventriloquist and her two puppets, Oscar & Petunia.]
DARCI: Okay. (SCREAMS).
[Darci nods as if “that’s it.]
[Melissa is with Angelica Hale, singer. Angelica mouths, no audio “I feel so… excited.” and uses her hands to gesture, and wave. Melissa laughs.]
[Melissa is with Evie Clair, singer. Evie goes nuts with her face and hands, shaking all over. And then holds both hands in thumbs up.]
MELISSA: I get it!
[Melissa is with Sara, a dog trainer and her white dog, Hero.]
SARA: [Talking to the dog] Here ready? Ready? Hop up!
Sara gets Hero to do a trick, and gets the dog to jump for joy while Sara waves her hands alongside the dog. Melissa laughs.]
MELISSA: I love it!
[Melissa is with three men from Light Balance, a light-up dance group. One man holds his arms out and holds fists tight out of excitement.]
MAN: Yeah, he is good at that. [laughter]
[Melissa is with Kechi, singer. Kechi holds her fists and jumps for joy. Then takes a deep breath. Then does a back and forth dance. Melissa nods along with her. They both laugh together.]
[Melissa is with Chase Goehring, singer/songwriter & guitarist. He holds his hands out in joy, then plays air guitar, writes in an invisible pad, and plays air guitar one more time as if one last final note. Melissa holds a thumb up.]
[Melissa is with 4 dancers from the Diavolo acrobatic dance group.]
[One man shakes fist in joy, one man does an interpretive dance, one woman holds her arms out in strength, and one man gapes, and smiles, while feeling strong. It’s all very expressive. One guy hugs the other woman.]
MELISSA: I love it!
[Melissa is with Preacher Lawson, comedian. He jumps very high. Melissa laughs.]
MELISSA: You nailed it. (repeats for interpreter) You nailed it.
PREACHER: Can I do one more? Can I do one more expression?
MELISSA: Thank you, good luck tomorrow night. Congratulations. One more? Okay sure, go ahead.
[Preacher gives Melissa a big hug. Melissa laughs.]
MELISSA: Good luck to everyone tonight! Make sure to catch the finale, I can’t wait to see who wins!