It is difficult to stand out among all of the skill, originality and flat-out absurdity on America’s Got Talent, but 39-year-old Las Vegas resident Uzeyer Novruzov manages to do just that. He stuns viewers with nothing but an ordinary ladder and his uncanny resemblance to silent film legend Charlie Chaplin.
His introductory interview is charming. He admits that he is not fluent in English and prefers to let his routine speak for him. His reluctance to speak pushes him even further into character. He has been honing his skills for nearly 20 years, and this perseverance is evident in his mastery of his chosen apparatus.
As the vintage soundtrack starts to play, Novruzov begins by racing up the ladder and then back down the other side. This is remarkable to see, as the ladder is not leaning against anything. He then scuttles up it backward and loops his body through the top gap before flipping over it and emerging at the top of the ladder. He launches the ladder into a spinning movement on just one leg while he continues to climb up and down, sometimes hanging off of one rung. He holds onto the top and jumps in circles and then throws the ladder up in the air.
Part of what makes this performance so enjoyable is how obviously the judges are tickled by Novruzov’s routine. It is rare to see a performer who is so completely immersed in a character and committed to perfecting such a unique talent.