And the historic winner of season 17 of ‘America’s Got Talent’ is…


History, or his history, was made in the america’s got talent Season 17 finale on Wednesday, when the top two contestants were female dance acts, a AGT first.

And interestingly, both were also international. Got talent alumni: Lebanese dance company Mayyas won Arabs have talent in 2019, the same year pole dancer/multimedia storyteller Kristy Sellars won the Australian version of the show.

Here in the US, however, it was Mayyas, a modern dance collective made up of 36 Lebanese women of varying ages, and the first Arab dance group to appear on AGT – who finally won AGTThe $1 million prize and a headlining spot at the Luxor Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas. Kristy took second place, with the top five rounded out by country music acts Chapel Hart and Drake Milligan (fifth and third place, respectively) and deepfake tech artists MetaPhysic in fourth place.

Viewers were delighted with this result, taking to Twitter with comments such as, “After 17 seasons, the curse is finally over and a dance crew won #AGT!” (The only time a dance collective won the show was when India’s V.Unbeatable, who had previously placed fourth in AGT Season 14, prevailed in the stellar spin-off AGT: The Champions in 2020.)

This was an emotional victory for Mayyas, as her choreographer Nadim Cherfan, who founded Mayyas to provide a “safe and creative space” for these talented dancers, had previously stated during the group’s audition episode: “Lebanon is not considered a place where you can build a career outside of dancing. It’s hard, very hard, and harder for women.”

“Unfortunately, being a dancer as an Arab woman is not fully supported… even”, one of Mayyas had also explained through tears. “Being here on the world’s biggest stage is our only chance to show the world what Arab women can do: the art we create, the fights we fight. … We want to show the world that we are capable of standing up as really strong and powerful women.”

That fateful night, head judge Simon Cowell had told Nadim and Mayyas, “This will really make a difference, full stop, in a lot of positive ways.” Simon’s co-star, Sofia Vergara, even gave the company her Golden Buzzer that night, and now the world, and specifically Las Vegas, belongs to these talented women.

Pictured: (L to R) Simon Cowell, Heidi Klum, Howie Mandel, Sofia Vergara, Terry Crews, Mayyas -- (Photo: Trae Patton/NBC via Getty Images)

Pictured: (L to R) Simon Cowell, Heidi Klum, Howie Mandel, Sofia Vergara, Terry Crews, Mayyas — (Photo: Trae Patton/NBC via Getty Images)

On Wednesday, Sofia said in a statement: “From the moment I first saw the Mayyas, their performance was spectacular and gave me goosebumps. Her coordinated choreography was the most beautiful and creative dance I have ever seen. Every time they competed, they continued to outperform themselves. Their empowering performances have earned them the ultimate title and I am so proud of them and can’t wait to see what they do next.”

Read more from Yahoo Entertainment:

· ‘One of the strangest evenings we’ve ever had’: Everything goes wrong in ‘AGT’

Howie Mandel scathingly criticizes boy band ‘AGT’ Travis Japan: ‘It was like a Saturday Night Live skit’

· Mayyas honors late ‘AGT’ contestant with impressive routine: ‘What really got us into the audition this year is Nightbirde’

· Simon Cowell’s death stunt ‘America’s Got Talent’ shocks audience: ‘We need a doctor!’

Nick Cannon on leaving ‘America’s Got Talent’: ‘One of the best decisions I’ve ever made in my career’

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