“I won’t know for a month if I’ll get called back for the show,” says comedic singer-songwriter Ron Hill — aka Happy Ron
— who auditioned October 23 for the upcoming sixth season of America’s Got Talent. “The crowd shots of people trying out were filmed on that day, and I was repeatedly called by the producers to be at the front of the crowd of several hundred for almost all the shots, thanks no doubt to the purple jacket and hat [I wore]. I was standing right next to the host as he would say things like, ‘Welcome back to the show, look at this crowd,’ and the camera would pan out. They also called me over for an interview...so when they have the L.A. auditions show, expect to see a lot of me, whether or not I actually get to perform.”
Before getting into the audition room, Hill says, “I ended up waiting a total of ten hours to play, most of that time in a huge room with 500 other people. Most people seemed relatively normal; there weren’t as many apparent weirdos as I thought there would be, but the ones that were there got plenty of attention. There were at least two Michael Jacksons, a female Elvis, and a guy who put on a full gorilla suit as he walked into his audition — what he did during it, I do not know.”
As for the tryout, “They did have a timer and told everyone we had exactly 90 seconds.... I was allowed to perform the whole of [my song] ‘Pitter Patter,’ which probably ran ten seconds over, singing and playing guitar. Since I essentially had ten hours of waiting to warm up, I think I did a great job on the song. The judges — and their apparent assistant — smiled a lot when I played and seemed to enjoy it.”
When the sixth season of America’s Got Talent debuts in summer 2011, famous former neighbor Nick Cannon will return as host. Other locals who’ve appeared on the show include drag dancer Boy Shakira, variety act the Platt Brothers, and Bernie Barker, a 65-year-old male stripper.
Happy Ron Hill