Friday, May 30, 2008

Charleston and Washington, DC Auditions

Was it me, or was tonight's episode really tedious? Maybe I'm just getting tired of the auditions, and want to get to Vegas week already! (I always feel this way about American Idol about this time, when I want to move onto Hollywood week.) Anyway...

First up is Charleston, South Carolina, where it's finally warm and sunny, and the dancers in line are busting out their moves. (I even saw someone masked who looked like a member of JabbaWockeez!). Tonight's guest judge was Tyce Diorio--Yay!

The first contestant is Sheila Kaiser, a freshman at University of Georgia, majoring in biological engineering. It seems every show opens with a strong dancer who has a hard luck story. She is pursuing dancing against her dad's wishes, but she is a strong, contemporary dancer in a cute heart hoodie, so it was a good move. Nigel told her that she was absolutely tremendous (which she was), and we got Mary's first shout out. She is going straight to Vegas.

Next up are...

...Erin Mansour and John Tabakian, two so-called ballroom dancers. Erin shakes her body as John watches, the sort of does some partnering. She notes that at 30 this is her last chance to audition (thankfully) and she has been a dance teacher for eight hours. She is told she is a total embarrassment, which surprises her. Her red dress matches Mary's.

Jeremiah Hughes does push ups with his ear buds in (impressive). He is a contemporary dancer (shirt open, ala Dimitry, and is very cute). He is a beautiful, passionate dancer who "dances with purpose." He admits that he screwed up at one point, which Nigel reprimands him for, but he buttons up his shirt and goes straight to Vegas.

We then see Syiddah King, who cannot dance, trying to do hip hop, but unsuccessfully. She has been dancing forever ("If you want to call it dancing: Nigel), but Nigel says she is not a particularly good mover or dancer, and she argues with the judges for what seems forever. I am getting VERY tired of these exchanges. She finally walks off before Tyce can even get a word in, and I say Sayonara.

Shamika Robinson says she'll put off her wedding until June if she goes through to Vegas, but she doesn't, so she goes home to get married.

Next is my favorite segment of the night: Anthony and Antwain Hart, identical twins. Anthony is first, and he dances like the 70s, one note, and moves well but needs training. He leaves and then Antwain gets his turn, getting in some terrific hip hop. The judges banter with him about whether he would go if his brother didn't get in (no), then Anthony comes in and says *he* wouldn't go if his brother didn't get in. Nigel and the judges decide to let them both thru to choreography, and they hug each other. They both end up going to Vegas and there is lots of jumping up and down.

It's now Day 2, and I want more real dancing. Where is it?! They seem to be doing well in the parking lot, so why aren't they are on-screen. I'm becoming very annoyed.

Abigail Thurman starts off the day. She is a swim teacher and came to see if she can dance. She cannot. (Side note: Nigel is wearing his ugly red and grey striped shirt again, and looks like a college geek.) She flails about fixes her hair, flails about some more. Tyce says, "Honey, that was horrifying," and she agrees and laughs about it. Nigel says that she handles criticism well and after she puts herself down he consoles her by saying, "Don't classify yourself as a loser, you're just a *bleep* dancer. Um. Okay.

BJ Harris is next and he is a hip hop dancer from NY with no training. and no money (his performing arts school sent him there, and he only has $10 in his pocket; this reminds me of Status Quo from American's Best Dance Crew). I think his isolations are cool, and the judges do, too, but they send him to choreography, though he can move his body in ways most dancers cannot.

Courtney Galiano has supportive grandparents who serve everyone in line breakfast at 4:00 AM (they are SO cute). She wants Mary to scream for her and tell her she is on the hot tamale train. Mary doesn't, but she is a beautiful contemporary dancer and the camera loves her. Mary calls her a "cutie patootie" (I may throw up if she says that to any other contestant) and she is straight thru to Vegas. She hugs the judges, then her grandparents, and they all cry and it is touching.

We get to see Mariah and Carlos Santana and Donald Trump promoting Macy's during the break, and I can only think that this is so wrong. This is followed by Adam Sandler in "Zohan" and I think he and Mike Myers should fly far, far away and leave us alone.

Next up is Jason Looney (perfect name), a transvestite in hot pink pants, a black shiny top, and lots of red lipstick to go with his shaggy blonde wig. He does nothing, says he is Betty Wallace when the judges begin criticizing him, and Nigel says "You are one of the reasons why fathers don't want their sons dancing," which I find inappropriate. There is the usual arguing and he leaves. You're wasting our time, Nigel.

We see some "terrifying sights" set to Thriller in the parking lot and inside (terrible dancing) and I think of the Step It Up and Dance contestants at the Tribeca Film Festival and how awesome they are and how the show is coming up next and how much I want Nick to win (he does win the Michael Jackson "Man in the Middle" challenge and makes it to the top four finale; yay!).

Claire Calloway from Season Two is back!!! She brings along her adorable baby and explains how she stopped dancing until after the pregnancy. Her dancing is only fair and she says she feels as if she has disappointed everyone. Tyce calls her a one trick pony who needs "more dynamics to utilize her beautiful body" and Mary and Nigel note that the bar as been raised during S3. She cries but is sent to choreography. She does kill during Rhianna (I love Travis, and wonder why he doesn't get more screen time) and she is off to Vegas, while BJ is sent packing (I'm sorry about this). Seventeen others make it, and I wonder who will make it to the Top 20 and continue to feel bored.

We continue onto to Washington, DC and it's cold out again but there is lots of dancing in parkas. Dan Karaty is this week's judge, and I am SO excited. Megan Campbell begins the day, and she is a good but not great contemporary dancer with her aunt, "her biggest fan." At least she is dancing to Alicia Keys, so that's a yes in my book. She dances with her heart "and leaves it all on the floor" (Dan), and is sent to Vegas, kissing Nigel, followed by her aunt kissing Nigel. This is her first audition ever, but I don't think she'll make it thru Vegas.

Next up is: Dancing Derrick! (Why oh why do we have to suffer through him again?!). He is the contestant who hyperventilated last year, and he doesn't this year, but the only good thing about his performance is that he dances to the Bee Gee's "You Should Be Dancing" and I do a little of the hustle. He starts in on charades during his "dancing," and I am bored. He is dismissed and says "It's all good, I just gotta get better," and I think this is impossible and don't let him on the air next time.

Markus Shields is a 23-year old who wears a shirt with his mom on it. She died when he was 12, three days before Christmas, and I am touched. He moves really well with lots of feeling, and Mary is speechless. He goes to choreography and tries to smile but can't, despite the judges' encouragement.

We are told that this is the widest range of solos the show has ever seen in a montage and I am sorry that *we* don't get to see them for more than five seconds. Then we get to Markus Smith and Deanna Ball's DC Swing, the official dance of the Nation's Capital and a variation of the lindy hop. They are very good and are sent on to choreography. They don't make it past that round, however--"their moves didn't translate to someone else's choreography" according to Mary-- but Markus Shields makes it, and he finally smiles. I am touched once again.

We are finally on to Day Two. Brandon Bryant is back, noting that he was only 15 when he auditioned for S1, but now he's back, combining ballet, jazz, hip hop, and contemporary. Mary screams, noting that he took her breath away, and that he is "a force to be reckoned with" (she really needs to come up with some new descriptions), and he is straight thru to Vegas. I bet he'll make it to the Top 20.

During the commercial break, a friend calls and says, "Is Mary always this annoying?" I say yes. "She says, "I'm not sure I'll be able to watch the show if so." I tell her it gets better once they show Vegas week.

The next dancer is Phucdat Nguyen (yes, I checked on his name). He wears a yellow swimsuit with goggles because he "embraces his nerdiness," but he is actually pretty entertaining. The judges say he brought a character to life, and he is sent to choreography. Mariya Priymak dances with ribbons. She moves, watches the ribbon, dances over it, stops, continues. She is a no.

The next dancer is Anthony Bryant who is a "wonderful technician" but is missing something, though the judges can't fault his technique (duh, he's a terrific dancer). They say he's changed and grown so much since he auditioned during S1 but they send him to choreography and I'm surprised and confused. He was told he wasn't masculine enough during his first audition, so he wears army fatigues this time. But they point out that this makes no sense to them, so he changes into jeans for the choreography round.

Finally, Travis and Rhianna are back. Phu doesn't make it but neither does Anthony, and I am pissed off. He cries in Cat's arms, says that "I love performing so much that I suffer for it," and has a melt down. He loses his shoes, finds them, walks through the darkened street barefoot, cussing out the judges. I feel badly for him. We find out that nine more contestants are flying to Vegas (no Snuggle dancing this time!) and that the last stop of the auditions is Milwaukee. I am SO ready for Vegas week.

blog comments powered by Disqus