Bolingbrook's Aerial Dancer Soars on 'America's Got Talent'

The Mothmen earned four "yes" votes at their intial appearance on NBC's "America's Got Talent." Photo credit Adam Taylor/NBC
The Mothmen earned four "yes" votes at their intial appearance on NBC's "America's Got Talent." Photo credit Adam Taylor/NBC
She was only two years old when she started her dancing career. To hear her mom tell it, she has always been a performer. Now, she's getting the recognition she's spent nearly three decades working toward.

Bolingbrook native, Melanie Braxton, was among an aerial dance troupe of twelve performers, called the Mothmen, that performed on NBC's hit, "America's Got Talent" Sunday.

The Mothmen earned four "yes" votes, advancing to the next round. Only three  were needed to get to the bootcamp round, Braxton said.

The original performance was recorded in April on Los Angeles. Braxton's parents, Tom and Michelle Braxton, saw the reactions.

"(The judges') reactions were genuine, I felt," Michelle Braxton said. "They said they would like to see the show over and over again, they were very excited for (the Mothmen)."

Michelle Braxton remembers taking her daughter to dance class as a toddler. The child started lessons at 2 years old at Bolingbrook's Dance Dimensions Studio, the mom recalled.

A Valley View School District student, Melanie Braxton next attended high school at the Chicago Academy of the Arts in Chicago.

Now 28, her career has taken her to new heights – literally. She is an aerial trainer for the Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines, her mom said. She's trained with the United Stuntmens Association and is also a professional stunt double.

"It's so exciting to be able to receive the recognition for the work that we do," Melanie Braxton said, calling the NBC experience "validating."

The Mothmen advanced to the boot camp round, which had a couple hundred contestants, Braxton said. Next, the competition is narrowed to 48 contestants.

If the Mothmen advance, they will be among the live performances that air over the course of four weeks starting July 29, she said.

"If we make it past boot camp, we will make it on one of the four weeks of live rounds," Braxton said.

With about 11 million people watching, the stakes, just like the performances, gets higher and higher.
Quincy Alexander June 26, 2014 at 10:09 AM
Good to see local Kids with Talent being Recognized !


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