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Terry Fator
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    (June 10, 1965- )
    Born in Dallas, Texas
    Lead singer for the 1980's bands Freedom Jam and Texas the Band
    Went solo in the 1990's and incorporated ventriloquism into his act
    Notable dummies used in his act include country singer Walter T. Airedale, Winston the Impersonating Turtle, Johnny Vegas, Vikki the Cougar, Elvis impersonator Maynard Thomkins, Duggie Scott Walker, Emma Taylor and soul singer Julius
    Entered Season 2 of America's Got Talent and named winner (August 21, 2007)
    Signed five year deal to perform nightly at The Mirage in Las Vegas for $100 million (with option for a five year extension - May 13, 2008)
    Wrote the book 'Who's the Dummy Now?: Winner of America's Got Talent' (2008)
    He became a '30 years in the making overnight sensation.'
    In 1988, a major record company was set to sign 'Texas the Band,' but wanted him to drop impressions and sing in his own voice, something he hated, and turned the deal down.
    He was once booked at a 1,000 seat theatre, and one person showed up.
    Just before his America's Got Talent debut, he performed at a fair in Houston where his audience consisted of one 12-year-old boy.
    When he began his act on AMT, judge David Hasselhoff lamented out loud, 'Oh no, a ventriloquist!' (there's a confidence booster)
    His dream was to be on The Late Show with David Letterman, but after he achieved fame, he was so booked he had to turn Letterman down four times before he could fit him in his schedule.
    He divorced his wife after 18 years of marriage (1991-2009), and 24 hours after the divorce, he married a 21-year-old model.
    He decided to become a ventriloquist after reading Paul Winchell's book 'Ventriloquism for Fun and Profit.'
    Soon afterward, he bought a Willie Talk dummy from Sears and won a $25 prize at a church picnic (his AMT prize was $1 million).
    Stating there were too few good ventriloquist acts (singling out Jay Johnson & Bob and Willie Tyler & Lester as exceptions), he kept going through all the hard times, getting family support when he wanted to give up.
    AMT judges Piers Morgan and Sharon Osbourne were blown away by his act, and chronic complainer Simon Cowell has referred to him as 'one of the two most talented people on the planet.'
    In 2007, he became an official supporter of Ronald McDonald House Charities.
    The theatre in The Mirage hotel & casino was renamed the Terry Fator Theatre, and his family friendly act continually sells out.

Credit: Scar Tactics

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