The World Taekwondo demonstration team went straight though to the live stages of America's Got Talent after earning the golden buzzer during auditions ©America's Got Talent

The World Taekwondo demonstration team has been fast-tracked to the quarter-finals of America's Got Talent after they were rewarded with the "golden buzzer" for their "extraordinary" performance in the auditions round.

Each judge is allowed to use the golden buzzer to send an act automatically into the live shows, regardless of the opinion of the other judges. 

On this occasion, the decision to take up that option was made by the show's host Terry Crews and simply reflected the general feeling.

After the 22-member team had delivered a flawless three-minute audition of athleticism, acrobatics and taekwondo kicking skill, Simon Cowell described it as "one of the most extraordinary things I've seen in all the years I've been on America's Got Talent".

Sofia Vergara called it "perfection" and Heidi Klum said: "I had goosebumps. This was amazing."

Howie Mandel added: "I have never seen anything like this in my life.

"The discipline that is involved, the message that you have - amazing."

The demonstration team performed under the theme of mental training and used their audition as an opportunity to send out a message for a more peaceful world.

After pressing the golden buzzer, Crews told the performers: "I've got to tell you - I have never ever seen anything like this in my life.

"This is not about fighting, it's about courage, it's about confidence and respect.

"And I respect what you guys did out here today like no-one else.

"And, you know, you were not able to make it to the Olympics and get a gold medal but I am going to give you something golden right now."

As a result, the demonstration team will move directly to the quarter-finals which will be broadcast live at the beginning of August.

They will be hoping to make it through to the finals in September, where a cash price of $1 million (£721,000/€841,000) will await the winners.

The demonstration team previously reached the finals of Italia's Got Talent in 2020, having also received the golden buzzer in the auditions.

Having seen the team's performance in Italy, America's Got Talent invited them to perform on their show.  

The programme, currently in its 16th season, is one of the most popular television shows in the United States and generates a global following.