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'AGT': Simon Cowell 'surprised' this dancer landed on his feet after wife ditched him

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The stakes are higher than ever.

Tuesday kicked off the last night of auditions on "America's Got Talent," which judge Heidi Klum described as the "best season yet." And with competition amping up, that means scoring four "yes" votes from the judges does not come easy.

Now imagine trying to land a "yes" without one half of your act? That's the exact predicament Pasha found himself in after his "dance partner didn’t arrive tonight."

"My wife and I would perform together," Pasha said. "Unfortunately, she couldn’t be here tonight. She missed her flight. So I’m really in a jam. I’m trying to figure out what to do."

Although he claimed to never have performed by himself and said he was "very worried" about his audition, Howie Mandel said this was the "ultimate" example of "the show must go on."

'AGT': Howie Mandel apologizes after being scolded by contestant's mom over 'rude' comments

Host Terry Crews rolled out Pasha and a "scary" life-size doll of his wife, but it turns out it wasn't Pasha exactly. He tricked the judges with the ultimate illusion, which showcased a pair of oddly flexible, lookalike dummies dancing on his back.

"You got us, didn’t you," Simon Cowell said. "We were all thinking this is going to be terrible and it was actually … great. It was a great surprise."

Mandel added, "You are going to freak a lot of little children out."

Surprising the judges paid off because Pasha earned four "yes" votes and moved on to the next round of the competition where his wife can hopefully make it. "That's the plan," he said.

"America's Got Talent" will go on a two-week hiatus on NBC during the Tokyo Olympic Games, but Cowell was sure to note the striking similarities between the two competitions.

"('AGT' is) like the Olympics," Cowell said. "You train and literally two minutes can change your life forever. Confidence and talent for those two minutes in particular, that’s what you have to think about."

When the competition returns in August, the judges will narrow down over 150 acts to just 36 for the live shows taking place at Los Angeles' Dolby Theater.

The heartbreaking deliberations began at Cowell's Malibu mansion at the end of Tuesday's episode. "It's now the moment of truth," Cowell said. Vergara added she's "nervous."

Vergara, still new to deliberations after joining the judging panel last season, said she feels comfortable in her role.

"I felt like a part of the family since the first day I sat down at this desk and I feel like it even more now," she said. "I’m so happy I came to 'America's Got Talent.'"

'AGT': Howie Mandel apologizes after being scolded by contestant's mom over 'rude' comments

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: 'AGT': Simon Cowell 'surprised' dancer advanced without partner