Then and Now: The winners of 'America's Got Talent'

  • There have been 13 winners of “America’s Got Talent.”
  • Some are still hugely successful today.
  • The most common winners are singers, ventriloquists, and magicians.
  • Visit INSIDER’s homepage for more stories .

“America’s Got Talent,” also known as “AGT,” has been crowning winners and handing them a million dollars since 2006. Since it’s not limited to just singing acts and has no age restriction, tons of unique talents have shown up throughout the years. So, in the last 13 seasons, three children, three ventriloquists, two magicians, one dog trick act, and numerous singers have left the show Victorious.

Here’s where all 13 of the “AGT” winners are now in 2019.


In 2006, singer Bianca Ryan won the first season of “America’s Got Talent.”

Ryan was just 11 when she won with a performance of “I Am Changing” from “Dreamgirls.”


Ryan recently returned to music after suffering vocal cord paralysis.

Shortly after her win,Ryan released a self-titled album and two Christmas albums. According to her website, she also began writing her own songs. But, as her website bio states, in 2016 she had to undergo surgery after a virus paralysed her vocal cords. Fortunately, after she recovered, she was able to return to music. She recently performed on “America’s Got Talent: The Champions” in early 2019.


Season two crowned the first ventriloquist winner: Terry Fator.

Believe it or not, three ventriloquists have won this show, but Fator was the first back in 2007. His winning act was having his turtle doll sing a song about a breakup.


Now Fator regularly performs in Las Vegas.

Frazer Harrison/Getty Images for ACMTerry Fator attends the 54th Academy Of Country Music Awards Cumulus/Westwood One Radio Remotes on April 05, 2019 in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Fator is one of the most successful winners from the show. He went on to write a book called “Who’s the Dummy Now?” He also voiced a character on Disney’s “Mickey Mouse” show and had a small role on the Lifetime show “Drop Dead Diva” in 2014. He also has a show in Las Vegas and occasionally stops by “AGT” to perform on the live shows.


Opera singer Neal E. Boyd won season three in 2008.

Chris Haston/NBCU Photo BankNeal E. Boyd in 2008.

Boyd’s finale performance was a rendition of “Nessun Dorma” by Puccini.


Boyd died in 2018.

Harry E. Walker/MCT via Getty Images2008 America’s Got Talent winner Neal Boyd sings ‘God Bless America’ on the second day of the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Florida, Tuesday, August 28, 2012.

After his win, Boyd released an album called “My American Dream,” went on tour, and even performed for former president Barack Obama. Sadly, in June 2018, he died from a combination of heart failure, kidney failure, and liver problems, according to CNN.


Country musician Kevin Skinner won the fourth season of “AGT.”

Trae Patton/NBCU Photo BankKevin Skinner in 2009.

In 2009, Skinner won with his performance of Aerosmith’s “I Don’t Wanna Miss A Thing.”


Skinner has faded from the public spotlight in recent years.

In 2010, Skinner released an album titled “Long Ride.” Since then, he’s kept a fairly low profile. He hasn’t posted on his Facebook page since 2012. In 2014, Radar Online reported that his family reported him missing, but Kentucky police later said they found him safe.


The season five winner was singer Michael Grimm.

Justin Lubin/NBCU Photo BankMichael Grimm in 2010.

Grimm won in 2010 with his performance of “When a Man Loves a Woman” by Percy Sledge.


These days Grimm spends his time touring.

Trae Patton/NBC/NBCU Photo BankMichael Grimm in 2011.

After “AGT,” Grimm got engaged on The Ellen DeGeneres show to longtime love actress Lucie Zolcerova and went on to release several albums. According to his website, he still frequently plays shows around the country.


Jazz singer Landau Eugene Murphy Jr. won season six.

Lewis Jacobs/NBC/NBCU Photo BankLandau Eugene Murphy Jr. in 2011.

The 2011 season ended in victory for Murphy Jr. after he performed the winning song“My Way” by Frank Sinatra.


Murphy Jr. now tours the country with his singing.

Gabe Ginsberg/Getty ImagesLandau Eugene Murphy Jr. in 2018.

According to his website, Murphy Jr. went on to play venues like Caesars Palace and the Apollo Theatre. He also released several albums, including a Christmas one. He still plays concerts around the country.


The season seven winner was dog trick act Olate Dogs.

A change from all the singing winning acts, dog trainers Richard and Nicholas Olate performed a complex dog trick routine to take home the 2012 victory.


The act went on to perform on TV and during NBA halftime shows.

The Olate Dogs show has appeared on Jay Leno’s show, during NBA halftime performances, in a movie, and on TV. They don’t currently have any tour dates, but you can book them for events on their website.


Performance dance artist Kenichi Ebina won season eight of “AGT.”

The Japanese performance artist combined storytelling, projections of himself on a screen, different dance styles, and acting in his performances – some of which can be seen in his unique finale dance act in 2013.


Most recently, Ebina competed on “America’s Got Talent: The Champions” in early 2019.

NBCKenichi Ebina in 2019.

Ebina returned for the all-stars season of “AGT,” but he was eliminated before the finals. His website says he’s also performed at various events like a private Madonna party, a special Cirque Du Soleil show, NBA halftime show, on a Disney cruise ship, and more.


Mat Franco became the first magician to win “AGT” back in season nine.

Manny Carabel / ContributorMat Franco in 2014.

In 2014, Franco performed a trick in the finals with a “human deck” of cards using real people and giant cards. He went on to become the show’s first magician winner.


Franco has now seen huge success in Las Vegas.

The magician performs nightly in Vegas at the Linq Theatre which has since been renamed the Mat Franco Theatre. In 2017 he was given the key to the Las Vegas Strip and had July 10th named Mat Franco Day.


Season 10 brought the second ventriloquist winner: Paul Zerdin.

Zerdin, a comedian and ventriloquist, took home victory in 2015. His finale act consisted of him performing jokes with his old man doll named Albert.


Zerdin recently announced a new UK tour.

After winning, Zerdin played a number of big shows, many at the London Palladium. He also had a show in Vegas called “Mouthing Off”. He recently announced a new tour called “Paul Zerdin’s Puppet Party” with tour dates throughout the UK in 2019.


Then 12-year-old Grace VanderWaal won season 11 of “AGT.”

The second child to win the show was singer-songwriter/ukulele player VanderWaal who wowed the finale audience with her original song “Clay.”


VanderWaal is now set to star in a Disney movie

After her 2016 win,VanderWaal released an album called “Just The Beginning” and an EP called “Perfectly Imperfect” featuring her original songs. She’s getting ready for her own tour in August 2019. She’s also playing the lead in the upcoming Disney movie “Stargirl.”


Darci Lynne Farmer became the third winning ventriloquist in season 12.

Farmer was 12 when she won “AGT.” Her winning act consisted of her singing “With A Little Help From My Friends” with two ventriloquist dolls.


In 2019, Farmer almost won the all-stars version of “AGT.”

Mat Hayward/Getty ImagesDarci Lynne in 2019.

Farmer was runner-up on “America’s Got Talent: The Champions.” Although she didn’t win that show, she’s had a strong career since her initial victory. She toured the country in 2018 and had her own holiday special. She’s also touring again through the 2019 summer, according to her website.


The season 13 winner was magician Shin Lim.

Jon Kopaloff/FilmMagicShin Lim in 2018.

In 2018, Lim became the show’s second winning magician. He won with a performance of his signature close up card tricks.


In 2019, Lim also won “America’s Got Talent: The Champions.”

Andrew Lipovsky/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty ImagesJimmy Fallon watches magician Shin Lim perform on March 1, 2019

Lim beat out several other “AGT” all-star competitors to take home the championship. He’s currently performing at The Mirage in Las Vegas.

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