‘Voices of Service,’ with Raleigh singer, performs on ‘America’s Got Talent’

Update, Aug. 14: Voices of Service performed on the Aug. 13 live episode of “America’s Got Talent,” backed by a military chorus representing all five military branches. The group, which includes Raleigh native Christal Sanders Rheams, performed “Fire” by Gavin DeGraw.

Viewers had to vote last night (voting ends at 7 a.m. ET the morning after the show) and we’ll learn on tonight’s results show if the group advances to the semifinals. The results show airs at 8 p.m. Aug. 14 on NBC.

Watch this video of the Aug. 13 performance and then read our original story about Rheams below that.

Original story: Raleigh is all set to watch more of 11-year-old violinist Tyler Butler-Figueroa on “America’s Got Talent,” but there’s another incredible hometown talent on our radar now.

Sgt. Major Christal Sanders Rheams, who grew up in Raleigh, is a member of the singing group Voices of Service. The group has advanced through two rounds of performances before judges on “AGT” to make it to live shows, which start Tuesday, Aug. 13.

Before the group’s moving Aug. 6 performance of the Wiz Khalifa with Charlie Puth song “See You Again,” Rheams explained that Voices of Service travels to hospitals to sing for veterans.

“Personally, we all have suffered our share of traumatic experiences,” Rheams said. “You can’t do it alone, and music can help all of us heal. We’re here to spread that message to everybody.”

Rheams said the “See You Again” performance was dedicated to “our brothers and sisters whose voices have been silenced, who could not find peace on this side.”

Just before the group started singing, the mic picked up judge Simon Cowell leaning over to guest judge Jay Leno to say, “She has an amazing voice.” Cowell has never been more correct.

Rheams is active duty military and has been a member of the United States Army Band since 1998. She was honored last May at the Women in Military Service for America Memorial in Arlington. According to her US Army Band bio, she attended the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and currently attends the University of Maryland.

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Brooke Cain is a North Carolina native who has worked at The News & Observer for more than 20 years. She writes about TV and local media for the Happiness is a Warm TV blog, and answers CuriousNC questions for readers.