America's Got Talent: Kiwi comedian Boy With Tape On His Face gets standing ovation
The Boy with Tape on His Face has won over one of Hollywood's harshest - Simon Cowell - who described the Kiwi's act as "brilliant" following his audition on America's Got Talent this week.
The Canterbury performer, whose real name is Sam Wills, received a standing ovation and a unanimous "yes" from judges Cowell, Howie Mandel, Heidi Klum and Mel Brown.
Appearing in the opening episode of the hit talent show's 11th season, Wills was initially met with scepticism from both the audience and judges alike.
It did not help that he was unable to answer the judges' questions.
"I'm a little afraid now I don't know what's going to happen," said an audience member.
Mandel reassured Wills and said, "I love a mystery. Go ahead and do what it is you do."
Wills performed two of his comedy routines, one featuring singing oven gloves, an other caressing himself in a mime dance to Lady in Red.
"That's brilliant. Brilliant," beamed Mandel mid-performance, as Wills won rapturous audience applause.
Simon Cowell said, "'I like the fact we don't know who you are. It was simple … clever, unique, brilliant."
Wills shared a video of his performance on his The Boy with Tape on His Face Facebook page, asking his followers to share the clip as much as possible.
"Thank you for all of your amazing support already!! Let's see how far we can take this thing!" he added.
Wills started his performing career as a busker in Christchurch and won the The Press People's Choice Award at the World Buskers Festival in 2008.
He used the prize money to develop his hit show The Boy with Tape on his Face, which sold out around the world and attracted dozens of five star reviews.
Wills has packed theatres in Britain, enjoyed several sellout runs at the Edinburgh Fringe and performed at the Royal Albert Hall. His silent comedy shows always sell out when Wills brings them to Christchurch for the World Buskers Festival.
Wills married performer Lili la Scala at the buskers festival in Christchurch in 2009.
Former World Buskers Festival director Jodi Wright gave Wills his first break by selecting him for her festival.
"I am so pleased for him. I hope he wins," she said.
"It makes me remember him performing in Cathedral Sq and trying to cut a cucumber on the stomach of a large German man [from the audience]. Will he do that bit on the show?"