America’s Got Talent started out this year with a bang. It also delivered the first Golden Buzzer win of the season.
The Golden Buzzer went to a 21-year-old saxophone player named Avery Dixon.
The young man came out and told his story, and when he finished his performance he received a standing ovation and there wasn’t a dry eye in the house.
Here is what you need to know about Avery Dixon.
Who is Avery Dixon on America’s Got Talent?
Before Avery Dixon went to the stage on America’s Got Talent, he was backstage with his mother who was getting him prepared for the performance.
Avery said that his mother believed in him, but he wasn’t sure he deserved to be there or was good enough to be there. That was because of years of abuse in the school system.
Avery is from Atlanta, Georgia, and he was born prematurely at under two pounds. As a result, he said his head had bumps and took a while to form properly, causing kids in his elementary school to call him “hammerhead.”
He also has an “airy voice” that caused kids to make fun of him further. He said one girl would call him “frog” and get everyone in the class to join in and mock him.
Avery said it made him suicidal at a young age. However, he found the saxophone and once he started playing it, his problems seemed to fade into the background and it became his safe place.
However, even that caused problems. Avery said that right before his flight to Los Angeles for the audition, neighbors called the police on him for practicing his saxophone for the show and they showed up and told him he couldn’t practice.
The good news is that he didn’t need the extra practice.
Avery Dixon’s performance on America’s Got Talent
When Avery Dixon began performing, it was magical. He started off with some melodic playing but then when the music picked up, he began to move around the stage and went through highs and lows, uptempo and low tempo, and he had even the judges dancing.
When he finished, Avery was in tears. So were the judges.
Heidi Klum said that when he played his instrument, he played from his heart. Howie Mandel said that he loved Avery and that he was meant to be there. Simon Cowell mentioned how much he hates kids being bullied and he hopes the “idiots” who bullied him were watching him now.
Simon gave the first yes, but no one else had a chance to vote.
Terry Crews walked out and said there was no need to vote. He told Avery to tell everyone who bullies him to let them know that he has a big brother named Terry Crews who will have his back all the time.
“You touched the heart of every human being in this building right now,” Terry said. “You’ve been bullied all your life, but you tell every bully that you have a big brother named Terry Crews who has your back, and all those bullies are going to have to watch you succeed, my friend.”
Terry then used his Golden Buzzer vote on Avery and sent the young man to America’s Got Talent’s live rounds.
After the show, Terry Crews explained his Golden Buzzer choice to PEOPLE.
“First of all, what I was looking for when I pushed my Golden Buzzer, was talent. The story, how many obstacles this person had to overcome, and the talent,” Terry said. “Because you can have one or the other, but you got to have both to get that golden buzzer.”
America’s Got Talent airs on Tuesday nights at 8/7c on NBC.