Rhode Island man astounds judges on 'AGT'

Mat Franco performs a card trick on "America's Got Talent."

He's the kid from Johnston who fell in love with magic at age 4 after seeing it on TV.

"Most kids go through the magic phase and I stuck with it. Never left me," Mat Franco said.

Now a 25-year-old national performer, Mat brought all of NBC's "America's Got Talent" judges to their feet.

"And one mistake would look really bad. If you say a 10 and throw down a 2, you're done," Mat said.

Instead, he got four "yes" votes from the judges and moved to the next round.

"I loved performing for them. It was great. I loved seeing how their reactions were, and I used that to learn what to do in the next round," Mat said.

"I chose to do a little something with each of them, incorporate (show host) Nick Cannon as well," Mat said.

Who's his favorite judge?

"It's really tough. I do like them all. I guess I give Howard Stern a little bit of an edge," Mat said.

Who's the toughest judge to impress with magic tricks?

"Believe it or not, I'm going to say Heidi (Klum). Heidi, I think, is the most skeptical of magicians," he said.

Franco may be larger than life on stage, but the University of Rhode Island graduate is laid back and humble.

"I think I lost my accent a little bit. It comes out sometimes when I'm on the road performing," Mat said.

Magic is Mat's full-time job. He wows crowds from the URI campus to the West Coast.

Mat said he's used to the response he gets when he tells people he's from Rhode Island.

"Oh, Long Island? No, Rhode Island. It's a state," Mat said with a laugh.

He's putting himself on the map with his magic. All eyes are on his next performance on "America's Got Talent."

"I want to be able to give the judges something they have never seen before," Mat said.

Mat is scheduled to appear on Tuesday night's episode of "AGT," which airs at 9 p.m. on NBC 10. The quarterfinalists will be revealed on Wednesday's show, airing at 8 p.m.