Lebanese dance group Mayyas wins America's Got Talent
The Lebanese dance group dazzles the world and the AGT jury, receiving a standing ovation from all the judges and the penultimate golden buzzer.
Lebanese dance group, Mayyas, has won season 17 of America's Got Talent, taking home the $1 million grand prize.
Confetti flew around as the dance group members jumped in shock, relief, and elatedness after the golden buzzer was hit.
Kristy Sellars, a dancer, won second prize, while Drake Milligan took third place. Metaphysic took fourth place and Chapel Hart took the fifth.
Mayyas' final performance was conjoined with Sellars', who performed an 80-second dance which sent waves of accolades in the crowd.
The performance was judged by Simon Cowell, Sofia Vergara, Heidi Klum and Howie Mandel.
Vergara took to Twitter, expressing: “IM SO PROUD, @mayyasofficial YOU DESERVE THIS!!!!”, also posting an image with an excited Vergara, holding one arm in the air, as the dancers broke down in tears of joy around her.
The Lebanese flag was held up among the audience as they cheered for the group, receiving a standing ovation from all the judges.
“This is what a million dollars looks like,” said Klum. “You brought your A game every time you came and tonight it was A plus.”
Talent ultra-critic Cowell, on his part, remarked that the show was "astonishing."
“Something has happened with you where I’m beginning to feel a buzz beyond the show,” he added. “This has landed. It’s global. It’s huge. I don’t think you can top that.”
Mandel said: “This is my favorite act ever on AGT.”
The group's choreographer, Nadim Cherfan, in an interview with Saudi Arabia-based news outlet Arab News, remarked that “The Lebanese people around the world have shown us huge support.”
“We’ve been getting tons of messages. Everybody is backing up Mayyas. Everybody is rooting for Mayyas. So I’m really thankful for the Lebanese diaspora that is being really supportive for Mayyas,” he added.
The golden buzzer, with all the ground-breaking implications that come with it, is not enough for Cherfan: “The golden buzzer, the standing ovation, the beautiful comments of the judges, and winning the title itself are challenges, because they are stress and responsibility — in those moments (all I am thinking is) ‘What’s next? How can I do better?’”
The Lebanese population has been enduring one of the worst economic and political crises in modern time due to corruption and US sanctions and meddling in internal affairs, in addition to an explosion in August 2020 which has devastated the capital, its painful effects experienced till this day. The dance crew's victory, for many Lebanese, was a breath of fresh air, cementing a sense of pride and joy among a struggling population.