See the ‘Absolutely Incredible’ Performance That Stunned the AGT Judges (2024)

America’s Got Talent contestant Zion Clark left a huge impression on the judges after his moving performance. Who is Zion Clark on AGT 2023? Learn more about the inspiring athlete and his extremely rare condition below.

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America’s Got Talentis NBC’s reality TV talent show competition created bySimon Cowell, who is a judge on the series and is also the creator of the internationalGot Talentfranchise, which includesBritain’s Got Talent,Canada’s Got Talentand more than 60 other televised talent shows across the world. Along with Cowell, the four judges onAmerica’s Got Talent Season 18 include TV personality Howie Mandel, model Heidi Klum and actress Sofia Vergara. The season is hosted by actor Terry Crews.

During the August 1, 2023, episode, we were introduced to contestant Zion Clark, a Canton, Ohio, native. The 25-year-old started his audition by sharing that he was born with a “super rare” condition called Caudal Regression Syndrome, leaving him with no legs. According to the Cincinnati Children’s Hospital, the condition “affects how the lower part of the body develops in the womb. From an orthopedic and spine standpoint, it is diagnosed as sacral agenesis. Sacral agenesis occurs when the sacrum, the lowest part of the spine, doesn’t form normally or at all.”

“There’s practically nothing known about it,” Clark told Mandel, Klum, Vergara and Cowell. “Aside from the fact I don’t have legs.” He also spoke about his difficult upbringing and time in the foster care system. “Mother’s in prison, dad’s in jail. I was thrown into the system from the second I left the hospital,” he explained. “I was disabled and a foster kid so I was just thrown away. Less than human is what I was treated like, and I got scars all over my body to prove it.”

When he took the stage, Zion performed a variety of fitness activities, including box jumps, bench presses, rope climbs and monkey bars, while a voiceover of his story narrated in the background. Watch his full audition below:

Zion received a standing ovation from all four judges. “You are absolutely incredible. I’m so happy that you came to audition. I’m so happy that we met, and I have to say that you’re very, very handsome,” Heidi Klum said. Vagara added: “You know what I love? It’s your smile. I mean from the moment you arrived you look like you’re so happy. I can’t imagine what’s happened to you and still here you come with a smile. Thank you for coming to AGT.”

“How you’ve come through this with your attitude is remarkable. You’re gonna make a difference and I applaud you,” Cowell concluded before the judges all voted yes, sending the Zion to the next round.

Learn more about Zion Clark’s upbringing and his impressive string of accomplishments below.

Who is Zion Clark on AGT 2023?

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Who is Zion Clark on AGT 2023? America’s Got Talent contestant Zion Clark is an All-American wrestler, an MMA fighter and holds the Guinness World Record as the fastest man on two hands. He’s also the subject of the Emmy-winning Netflix documentary, Zion.

According to Clark’s website, he was born on September 29th, 1997, in Columbus, OH, with a rare birth defect called “Caudal Regression Syndrome” that left him without legs. He was given up for adoption at birth, then bounced between foster homes where he was labeled as a “problem child.” Zion picked up wrestling and music at a young age which helped him build his confidence while experiencing abusive living situations.

Zion was finally adopted by his foster mother, Kimberly Hawkins, when he was in high school. “I got adopted, everything went into place,” he said of his foster mom on AGT. He continued pursuing his passions and learning new skills, eventually earning All-American accolades as a wrestler and serving as the lead drummer for his church.

He wrestled for Kent State University and competed in wrestling and wheelchair racing events at the school. He is also a professional mixed marial artist and won at the Gladiator Challenge: Seasons Beatings in December 2022, according to ESPN. Zion also embarked on his mission to become the first American athlete to compete in both the Olympic (wrestling) and Paralympic (wheelchair racing) Games in Tokyo (2020). His website says he wiill try to compete in the Olympic and Paralympic Games in 2024. Zion swears by the motto “No excuses,” which is also tattooed on his back.

America’s Got Talentairs on Tuesdays at 8 p.m. on NBC.

Check out our gallery on theAmerica’s Got Talent judges‘ salaries— including who makes the most — below.

See the ‘Absolutely Incredible’ Performance That Stunned the AGT Judges (2024)


Why did Howie Mandel miss America's got talent shows? ›

Mandel is colorblind and a germaphobe. He contracted COVID-19 at the 2022 Kids' Choice Awards, which caused him to miss parts of the third, eighth, and tenth episodes, and the entire seventh episode of the seventeenth season of America's Got Talent.

Do AGT contestants get paid? ›

Contestants are not compensated for their participation on AGT.

How did nicotine dolls do on AGT? ›

Judge Sofia Vergara's jaw literally dropped as Cieri started singing, and fellow judge Heidi Klum described his voice as “if Rod Stewart and John Mayer had a baby.” But, after advancing to the next round, he walked away from the show.

Who won America's Got Talent 23? ›

Afrian Stoica and Hurricane from AGT.

Who did Howie Mandel replace on America's got talent? ›

Following the conclusion of the fourth season, David Hasselhoff left the program, and was replaced by Howie Mandel.

Why does the AGT audience wear black? ›

Like almost all television productions, there are strict rules about what you can and cannot wear, as outfit choices can impact a taping. For AGT Live Shows, you can only wear dark, solid colors because stripes, patterns, and white clothing can impact the way the recording looks on television.

How much does Sofia Vergara get paid for AGT? ›

How much does Sofía Vergara make per episode? Based on the $10 million she reportedly makes per season of America's Got Talent, Vergara makes about $400,000 per episode for a 25-episode season. On Modern Family, Vergara reportedly made about $500,000 per episode at its peak.

How much does Heidi Klum get paid for AGT? ›

Her America's Got Talent Salary Is Massive

Heidi is a judge on America's Got Talent and has been for years. She judged the show from seasons 8-13, took a break in season 14, and then returned in season 15 and has been going strong since. According to Hello! Magazine, Heidi earns $3 million per season, so she's made...

Who is the highest paid on AGT? ›

Sofía Vergara is estimated to be the second highest-paid judge on AGT behind creator Simon Cowell.

What happened to Sam Siri on America's Got Talent? ›

He withdrew from the competition. Nicotine Dolls formed in New York City (Summer 2017) by Singer Sam Cieri and Guitarist John Hays, with John Merritt (Bass) and Abel Tabares (Drums) joining shortly after.

Who was the girl in the bathtub on AGT? ›

Viviana Rossi's audition in Episode 1702 consisted of performing an aerial act starting with soaking herself in a bathtub and then performing tricks on an aerial silk set to Bishop Briggs' "Never Tear Us Apart". All 4 judges voted "Yes", sending her to the next round.

Who won the first America's Got Talent? ›

Bianca Ryan won Season 1 on August 16, 2006, an 11-year-old singer. The runners-up were male clogging group All That and singers/musicians The Millers. Shortly after winning the first season of “Americas Got Talent,” singer Bianca Ryan released her eponymous debut studio album.

Did Sofie Dossi win America's Got Talent? ›

In the Fantasy League Finals, we get a clue. Dossi's defeat on Season 11 of America's Got Talent — when she finished in the bottom five of the top 10 — is motivating her to win.

Why hasn't Howie been on America's got talent? ›

It's not clear how much of AGT season 17 will have Howie absent from the show, but as he was out while he had COVID-19, we're expecting that his absence will also be felt in more upcoming episodes. Still, rest assured that the comedian is not going anywhere from AGT in the long run.

Is Howie Mandel related to Itzhak Perlman? ›

Perlman is a distant cousin of the Canadian comic and television personality Howie Mandel. He has synesthesia and was interviewed for Tasting the Universe by Maureen Seaberg, which is about the condition.

Who are the judges on America's Got Talent 2024? ›

Judges Simon Cowell, Heidi Klum, Howie Mandel and Sofia Vergara were looking for something unique, and it showed as a handful of Acts ended up getting the dreaded red X treatment, while others were able to break out and wow them with some truly amazing talents.

Who is most likely to win the AGT fantasy league? ›

Per the results of a recent TVLine poll, Kodi Lee and V. Unbeatable stand the best chance of winning, with less than a 1% difference between their votes. Following closely behind them are Aidan Bryant and Sofie Dossi, whose results are even closer together.


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