Raleigh singer on ‘America’s Got Talent’ now needs votes to advance to finals

Raleigh native Christal Sanders Rheams sang in the “America’s Got Talent” semifinals Tuesday night for a chance to move to next week’s finals.

Rheams is part of the military quartet Voices of Service, which travels to hospitals to sing for veterans.

They appeared at the end of Tuesday’s show, performing “Choke” by OneRepublic. The song contains the lyrics, “I’ll keep a picture of you on the wall ... And choke on the memories.”

Rheams became emotional during judge Simon Cowell’s comments on their spectacular performance: “What a way to end ... On the night that matters, you did the most outstanding vocal we’ve heard from you for the entire series. I know how much this means to you to get into the final, and after that, you deserve to be there. You have my sincere respect.”

Guest judge Queen Latifah told the group: “I’m blown away, I’m stunned, I’m shocked. Your voices meld together so perfectly. I think about my mom telling me when she would have to wake my father up out of his nightmares from Vietnam. What you’re doing does have a purpose, it will continue to have a purpose. I hope to see you in the finals, but irregardless, keep doing what you’re doing because you are saving and changing lives.”

Voices of Service performed the Wiz Khalifa with Charlie Puth song “See You Again” on the Aug. 6 show and “Fire” by Gavin DeGraw in the Aug. 13 quarterfinals.

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.

Also on ‘America’s Got Talent’

Raleigh’s 11-year-old violin master Tyler Butler-Figueroa advanced to the “AGT” finals last week. Tyler, a cancer survivor, was Simon Cowell’s Golden Buzzer pick from early in the season .


Voting happens online at or through the “America’s Got Talent” mobile app.

For all the details on voting, click the related story link at the end of this story. You need to vote before 7 a.m. Wednesday.


We’ll find out on Wednesday night’s results show (8 p.m. on NBC) if Voices of Service moves on to the finals, which airs Sept. 17 with the winner announced on the Sept. 18 show.

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