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ElectricBoogaloo

S14.E02: Los Angeles Auditions #2

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Two episodes in and the audition process is already starting to drag. This does not bode well. Show me one tap dancer, show.

-I think Dustin Payne is going to be with us for a while. I see a lot of Twitch in him. Some of the gliding stuff he was doing he was doing about as smooth as anyone I can remember on this show.

-I feel like they missed a "you are so, So You Think You Can Dance" one-liner opportunity with the willowy brunette in the contempo-montage. I feel like she's an Orphan Black style clone of a female dancer we've seen six or seven times make the top 20.

-I wasn't overly impressed by Lindsay Arnold's little sister (Jensen Arnold). She seemed a half step slow and clunky at the beginning of their routine. She improved as the routine went on, I'll give her that. He (Tristan Sosa) was quite good and has to have a decent shot of being one of the last male ballroom dancers standing.

-Inyoung "Dassy" Lee she was fun, a little Jessica JJ Rabone like in her style. But to me she's one of the poster children for why the heck aren't they sending more "meaningful" people to the choreo round this season. 

-Male Bellydancer cowboy guy was a joke audition on American Idol too. So he needs to do AGT just to have the trifecta.

-Other hip hop girl? She was a barely, barely choreo worthy audition if it wasn't for her mom doing choreo and dancing for Mariah Carey and Michael Jackson. So whatever. I fully expect her to completely disappear during the Academy rounds.

Edited by PhD-Purgatory15
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I thought Jensen was quite sloppy - her partner was quite sharp.  She sounds exactly like Lindsey.  She looks remarkably like Lindsey except for her shape.  Lindsey's got thinner and thinner since so maybe I'm misremembering.

Dustin Payne's gliding reminded me of Cyrus in one of the routines he did with Comfort.  So glad we're going to see Cyrus.

I don't think Dassy understood anything Nigel said about Shirley Bassey.

They seem to be hugging the judgels' faces longer.  I don't like it.

I hope we get to see Chelsea Hough dance more.

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I love step, and it's my secret dream to do, but i feel it's power is as a group. I didn't enjoy it as a solo. I can't believe I'm agreeing with Nigel!

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I enjoyed seeing Lindsay Arnold's sister, she did look look and dance like her. Sade's mother should have gone through!
Matthew was very good. 
The stepper( blessin? )What a gorgeous girl.A powerhouse! 
I have said it before, everyone should dance, I'm sure the world would be a much happier place.:) 

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Some  videos of this week's auditions (there are a bunch so they're under the cut):

Spoiler

Jensen Arnold & Tristan Sosa'


Eric Bossett & Felix Gomez

 

Sade Austin


Cody Ostrenga


Blessin' Giraldo

 

Inyoung "Dassy" Lee


Dustin Payne

 

Matthew DeLoch

 

 

Edited by ElectricBoogaloo

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I tried to give this another chance after they returned to adults this year, but Nigel is leaning so very hard into his indefensibly awful old man shouting at clouds persona that I just can't. I love you forever Cat Deeley and you are magic, but no. 

Best of luck to what I'm sure are a bunch of talented, hardworking dancers. May you see your dreams come true without Nigel referring to you in a gross way on national television. 

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I noticed during the western movie sketch that Nigel is claiming a PhD. I haven't noticed this before but I do tend to tune him out. I can't find any information other than perhaps he's misrepresenting an honorary degree. Anybody have better info?

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1 hour ago, Pallida said:

I noticed during the western movie sketch that Nigel is claiming a PhD. I haven't noticed this before but I do tend to tune him out. I can't find any information other than perhaps he's misrepresenting an honorary degree. Anybody have better info?

According to this article, "he was awarded an honorary doctorate by Bedford University for his contribution to performing arts on TV" in 2009.

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As one with an actual PhD, let me say an honorary ain't the same thing!! Which is not to dis honorary degrees, only that you don't get to claim the P word.

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I wish there were no back-story pieces and just more dancing. Like perhaps  more in depth in the choreography round.

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-I wasn't overly impressed by Lindsay Arnold's little sister (Jensen Arnold). She seemed a half step slow and clunky at the beginning of their routine. She improved as the routine went on, I'll give her that

On that flubbed ending alone, she should have had to go to choreo.  She is way more solid and less willowy than her sister.  When I see a fringe dress/pants I always expect to hear "Hip Hip Chin Chin." 

I enjoyed Vanessa incredulously proclaiming, "What is that!!??" during the triple jointed section.

I'm not excited yet.  I hope to get to excited at some point.

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46 minutes ago, WhineandCheez said:

On that flubbed ending alone, she should have had to go to choreo.

Agreed, and I actually have thought that quite a lot of people they sent straight to the academy should have gone to choreography, including Dassy. 

I want way more styles! I want actual jazz (not that girl who said jazz and then did bendy, hair flippy contemp), tap, Broadway, real belly dancing, swing!

I skipped out on the kid season and I'm really happy it's back, but these auditions have been really dragging for me. Too much backstory, too much of Mary screaming for people who I don't think warrant screaming, and not enough emphasis on the choreography round.

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Glad to see I'm not the only one who is less than impressed with this year's crop so far.  I did like Dustin a lot, and Dassy was not what I was expecting.  But other than that, I don't remember a lot of the auditions.  Agree with those who found Jensen less than impressive.  Lindsay is so much better and was so much better when she was on SYTYCD. 

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I hate the back-story pieces too.  Especially the Cowboy Belly Dancer.  It served no purpose especially since he didn't go thru.  The money they spent on producing all of that nothingness was a waste of funds. 

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36 minutes ago, NYCNJbear06 said:

I hate the back-story pieces too.  Especially the Cowboy Belly Dancer.  It served no purpose especially since he didn't go thru.  The money they spent on producing all of that nothingness was a waste of funds. 

And a waste of our time! 

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I don't mind the backstories when it's something directly related to dance. I'm glad the stepper brought attention to how dance helped her AND other girls in her community. There are lots of great stories about how youth activities provide alternatives to illegal activities. I also liked her bringing awareness of female steppers. I completely agree that its power comes from group performances, but I didn't think her audition and backstory took away from the broader concept of dance. 

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Dassy was excellent - she reminded me a little of Jaja. It would make me immensely happy if she makes the show. 

I DESPERATELY want to see more from Chelsea Hough - just the little snippet we got of her solo was really exciting. 

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I'm starting to get this uncomfortable feeling about the bootees that we see.  They all have stories that they want to tell and don't necessarily expect to go through at all.  I don't know why my brain takes so long to go there.  I guess I find the level of deception in reality shows difficult to conceive of.

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On ‎6‎/‎19‎/‎2017 at 9:22 PM, crowceilidh said:

They seem to be hugging the judgels' faces longer.  I don't like it.

A thousand times, yes to this.

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I think that if Jensen weren't Lindsay's sister, she wouldn't have gotten through (or maybe they are desperate for female ballroom dancers so she would have gone through even without that connection?). Her partner was clearly much sharper and in control than she was.

I wanted the male belly dancer to do well because I'm all for people breaking stereotypes, especially on this show where Nigel seems determined to keep people in specific boxes, but his belly dancing was not good. It looked like what he thought a bellydancer should do, if that makes sense.

ITA with the previous poster who said stepping is more of a group dance. I mean, you CAN do it solo as this girl did but I feel like it loses a lot of its impact that way. It's kind of like watching a row of girls doing a kickline versus one girl doing kicks by herself. It can still look good with one person if they have clean technique and precision, but it still looks much more impressive with a larger group of people.

I enjoyed both Dassy and Dustin. I feel like we haven't had as many breakdance auditions this season (at least not yet, but we're only two episodes deep). One thing I enjoyed about Dassy is that she didn't feel the need to come out in a bra top and booty shorts. There's nothing wrong with that kind of dancewear as it's de rigueur for most other styles of dance, but it's a nice change to see a female dancer who is confident enough to come out in pants and long sleeves and still look sassy and sexy without being overtly sexual. Some of her movement made me think she's cross trained so it will be interesting to see her do other styles at the academy. Dustin was so smooth. I just wanted to watch him glide around the stage all night.

Matthew showed me that is a turner, but everything else looked a little rough around the edges. It makes me suspect that he was trained at a competition studio that doesn't stress technique enough. It will be really interesting to see how he deals with someone else's choreography. He reminded of one of the male contemporary dancers from last week because both of them need to work on pointing their feet. I still remember how much Nigel harped on Robert Roldan every week about that.

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I really think they shouldn't do extensive backstories at this point. Just show the dancing. I don't mind a quick intro but I don't need the sob stories yet. Once they make it to the top 10 or 20 or whatever, do them but for now it's boring and I don't care.

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Some research must be telling them that people want these stories, but those people are not me.  I ff through all of them and most of the judges and even sometimes Cat's solo talks with them.  Just. not. interested.

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I've been by that school in Baltimore many times, because it's close to the central library. I hope the group gets invited back.

8 hours ago, ElectricBoogaloo said:

Dustin was so smooth. I just wanted to watch him glide around the stage all night.

Yep! I found it relaxing.

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11 hours ago, dcalley said:

I've been by that school in Baltimore many times, because it's close to the central library. I hope the group gets invited back.

For all his faults, Nigel is pretty good about keeping his word. Plus, if the production team had not locked in booking the steppers in the intervening months, his statements would have never made the final edit. And so it's pretty certain (barring some catastrophe on the dancers' end) that we'll see them. I'm looking forward to it too.

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I figured they locked in the finale group performance before even inviting Blessin to 'audition'.  They like to set up a bookended story.  

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13 hours ago, Mertseger said:

For all his faults, Nigel is pretty good about keeping his word. Plus, if the production team had not locked in booking the steppers in the intervening months, his statements would have never made the final edit. And so it's pretty certain (barring some catastrophe on the dancers' end) that we'll see them. I'm looking forward to it too.

I agree.  They brought in Brian Gaynor and his group back when Brian auditioned.  Nigel has lots of faults but he really does appreciate dance.  I think he tries really hard to convince TPTB to keep the show on the air and that is why he is willing to try new formats.

I preferred last week's episode vs. this week's.  Last week, I really enjoyed the ballroom couple and the Russian sisters.  Sorry, I can't remember names.  I have high hopes for Mark too since I've really enjoyed the other dancers from his studio.  They are very creative with unique solos.  Cole is one of my favorite contestants.  The female in the ballroom couple looks like she took ballet.  At least, it seemed like it to me.

Like others, I thought Tristan was better than Jensen.  He was sharper and I disagreed with the judges.  My eyes were drawn to him instead of her.  Jensen is cross-trained so that will help her in the Academy.  That is a downfall with a lot of really good ballroom couples.  Sometimes, they are not versatile enough. 

The guy with the sad backstory was good except for his feet.  But I can still see him doing well.

I enjoyed Dassy but not the one with the famous parents.  I think she was just chosen because of that.  I liked Blessin's story since dance helped her and she's paying it forward.  I think her group will enjoy performing on TV and it will look better as a group.

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The famous parents gal reminded me a little of Comfort so I knew she'd go through.  The 'not a sports bra' showing under her crop top was an interesting choice.  

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Thank the Tech gods for FF so I can bypass all the sob stories and the "dancers" who aren't serious contestants. Plus I don't want to see people dislocate their limbs, TYVM.

No one really stood out in this episode. 

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Wow, that was.... underwhelming.  I'm not sure, based on the first two audition episodes, that this is going to be a season that's any good.  The talent seems lacking.  Bad hip hop and extra flailing contemporary is all I've seen so far.

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I'm pretty easy to please when it comes to dance...Almost anyone who can dance their way out of a proverbial paper bag generally impresses me since that's already beyond anything I can manage. For me, other than possibly not seeing a very wide range of styles so far, it seemed as though they could probably put together a perfectly good season with just the people who have gone through in these first couple of auditions.

I can definitely do without Vanessa Hudgens, though...She didn't offer a single bit of insight, and as ignorant as I am when it comes to the technicalities of dance, I really appreciate someone who can point out the pros and cons of a performance with some detail and understading.

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1 hour ago, Canada said:

Wow, that was.... underwhelming.  I'm not sure, based on the first two audition episodes, that this is going to be a season that's any good.  The talent seems lacking.  Bad hip hop and extra flailing contemporary is all I've seen so far.

The contestants are always talented, to me. The last few years especially so.  That's when the dancers have tried to cross train before trying out for the show.  If there's a change I would make for the contestant, it's to select older dancers.  They don't have to be 30 but let's limit the 18, 19 20 year olds. 

The choreography and partnerships make sytycd for me.  That's what's been lacking for me.  Maybe it's just that I started with Mia, Shane and Wade.  I'd even add Mary and Tyce.  Current choreographers aren't the same and Tyce was overused. Maybe TPTB are just too involved with the assignment and manipulation?  And it looks like we can forget about the partnerships if we want to see the show anymore.  Very seldom do you see great partnerships beyond the original assignment.  Season 4 was different.  They all seemed to be great friends.  And Danny did a lot better once he got Lacey but I think they were friends before being on the show.  Otherwise the best partnerships are the ones who stayed together and made the top 10.  I enjoyed Season 7 in the beginning.  Then people started getting hurt and Mia went coo coo.  But Season 7 still had the best choreography, to me.  With all the negatives, it is still my preferred dance show.  I like seeing the dancers master different genres in such a short period of time.  In the beginning, it was a great challenge.

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On ‎6‎/‎20‎/‎2017 at 7:34 PM, crowceilidh said:

I'm starting to get this uncomfortable feeling about the bootees that we see.  They all have stories that they want to tell and don't necessarily expect to go through at all.  I don't know why my brain takes so long to go there.  I guess I find the level of deception in reality shows difficult to conceive of.

This seems like a strange tactic for all involved if the result is "failure." If I understand what you're saying correctly.

Vanessa so far is useless. I noticed this episode that when she does offer critique it's just a parrot of what Mary or Nigel just said.

I mind the backstory if the time is going to be this limited. This isn't days and days of Olympic coverage, it's a little over 40 minutes. And most of us have come here for the chance to see people dance.

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It does seem strange, but most of the "faiilures" (and I'm pretty sure we know that the people the judges see have been sent through to the show by the real panel of judges whoever they are) have stories that they profit by telling and fairly little real chance of getting through.  I don't know why the show doesn't show us all the people who get through to the top cut-off in auditions -- I sometimes think it's because they may not have had to audition at all (oh boy, I am sounding really paranoid) but it's been quite a long time now that we get familiar with people during auditions who don't get through to the top.  The show, I think. wants us to buy into the exclusiveness of the top group (whoever it is who has to undergo the green mile) so they get us to buy into the stories of people who won't make it through as well as a few who do.  So I think the failures may have agreed to go on in  return for getting whatever story it is they want heard to be heard (e.g. stepping girl). I guess I'm going to step into the kitchen to build my tinfoil hat now -- with viking horns, I think.

Edited by crowceilidh

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20 hours ago, crowceilidh said:

The show, I think. wants us to buy into the exclusiveness of the top group (whoever it is who has to undergo the green mile) so they get us to buy into the stories of people who won't make it through as well as a few who do.

I agree that the step girl and others who never had any chance of getting through go on just to showcase something.  But I think too we get to know people who later get cut because it builds suspense and tension.  Knowing your favorite might get cut adds something.  

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I think they also like to show auditions of people that are really good in their specialty but not necessarily make the Top 10 because they're not versatile, don't have the look or TV personality that they want, etc.

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I really hope the dancer was exaggerating about crying every time he went to dance class for YEARS, what - he said he cried every time starting at age 3 until he was 8? And he really didn't open up to dance until he went to a performing art school that included other things. Because his mother sounds like the worst kind of stage mother a poor kid could have.

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Dassy was my favorite dancer of the night. What she did was so unexpected and well done, and I totally agreed with a previous poster about her dance attire. What she wore totally enhanced her dance. The shirt in particular enhanced the movement, and added a nice sensuality without being over the top sexy. Her style reminds me of a fusion dancer named Anasma. 

And, speaking of dance fusions...........I was really pulling for the belly dancing cowboy. I wanted him to be awesome. The basic elements are there, but he needs to train with some actual belly dancers and hip hop dancers to strengthen his foundation in both dance forms. He looked good in that hip scarf, tho.

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