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Heidi Klum at 'America's Got Talent' Season 9 auditions in New York City

Heidi Klum at "America's Got Talent" Season 9 auditions in New York City, on April 4, 2014
Carla Hay

On April 4, 2014, “America’s Got Talent” held auditions at the Theater at Madison Square Garden in New York City. The show’s judges (Howard Stern, Heidi Klum, Howie Mandel and Mel B) were there, and so was host Nick Cannon. “America's Got Talent,” NBC’s top-rated summer series, returns in 2014 with performers from across the country ready to compete in the blockbuster reality show’s ninth season, which premieres on May 27, 2014.

With the talent search open to acts of all ages, “America's Got Talent” has brought the variety format back to the forefront of American culture by showcasing unique performers from across the country. The show features a colorful array of singers, dancers, comedians, contortionists, impressionists, jugglers, magicians, ventriloquists and hopeful stars, all vying for their chance to win America's hearts and the $1 million prize. Here is what Klum said during a red-carpet interview at "America's Got Talent" Season 9 auditions in New York City.

Do you worry about being too harsh in criticizing the child contestants? Does it feel weird?

For me, it's not really weird, because I feel like it's up to the parents. If you go on a show that is being judged and you're being judged, there's a possibility that we don't like what your kid did, so I feel like it's up to the parents to decide what is good for the child or not.

For us, we try to be honest. I don't try to send someone away with tears. I always want to keep them in a happy place when they're leaving, even though I gave them a "no," I don't think it's necessary to make someone cry or be upset. But you have to be honest at the end of the day.

Do any of your kids want to be on "America's Got Talent"?

My daughter actually does, yeah. She has a little dance troupe.

Which daughter?

Leni. She's 9.

How do you think she would do on the show?

I don't know. She likes to dance. She likes to perform with her little friends. So far, it's only performances in the living room.

When were you the most star-struck in your life?

When I worked with Michael J. Fox doing "Spin City," because I watched "Back to the Future" when I was little. And here I was doing a scene with him. I had a kissing scene with him in a bed where [our characters] had sex, and I was yodeling after sex.

I was like, "Oh my God! This scene is happening. I have to kiss Michael J. Fox! This is so weird!" Yeah, I was star-struck. I was sweaty.

How does the level of talent in "America's Got Talent" in Season 9 compare to Season 8?

It's even better. I do think people get inspired when they watch the show. I think people sit at home and say, "I can do this better. I'm going to add another thing to the act."

I see that in a lot of the ballroom dancers that we have this year. I feel like they hear our criticism from the last season. And they think, "We want more! She has to fly through the air or the music has to change." They want to do something different to always keep us alert and interested.

You shouldn't just do a cha cha for 90 seconds. Keep doing something different. Pile in a lot in those 90 seconds. And now, they're more inspiring. They're doing crazier things this year.

For more info: "America's Got Talent" website

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