Thursday, February 7, 2008
Fox Utah reports from call back day of the Salt Lake City auditions.
This blogger, Maria, auditioned AND got to interview Cat Deeley.
Today was the second round. Since Salt lake City had the biggest turnout ever, they had to do another quick cut. We did the improv thing for Nigel, Mary and Mandy Moore. I once again got through that round. That narrowed it down to about 85 dancers. We also did a second set of interviews, and when the producers heard I sing in a Bluegrass band, they had me sing on camera. (It was 8 in the morning and I wasn't warmed up, so it'll probably be scary)
After that we did our own choreographed solos. They were three people ahead of me, when the stage manager came running down the aisle, calling my name. He took me out into the lobby, told me to go upstairs. Okay... so I walk up the stairs and there is Cat Deeley (the gorgeous blonde British host) waiting for me! They chose ME to do a one-on-one interview with her! We talked for about 10 min on camera, and I would've loved to talk longer, but then the stage manager grabbed me again, whisked me back downstairs, and said, "you're on stage NOW". I freaked!
Doriana Sanchez will be choreographing the new Las Vegas show starring that conglomeration of bionics and petrochemicals we call Cher.
For 90 minutes, the legendary icon will perform her hits from across the decades merged with innovative staging and technology, breathtaking choreography by Doriana Sanchez and stunning costumes created by world-renowned designer Bob Mackie. Aptly titled, Cher at The Colosseum at Caesars Palace, the ultra-glitzy show that is as glamorous as the artist herself, opens May 6, 2008.
USAToday has a story about tonight's premier of Randy Jackson Presents America's Best Dance Crew. We learn that the crews will be required to show some versatility:
MTV program chief Tony DiSanto says having established teams adds a new element.
"What makes this unlike any other show is that group dynamic. It's not people who are put together. These are people who have been working together a long time to make a greater whole," he says. "The show will get into the drama and stories of these kids."
Teams will be pushed out of their comfort zones when they are asked to perform different kinds of dances under the hip-hop umbrella, DiSanto says. "If they're a b-boy crew, all of a sudden we could have them do a big, broad choreography number from the Janet Jackson Rhythm Nation video."
Wednesday night's So You Think You Can Dance Australia Sydney audition show again had the highest ratings.
Wednesday, February 6, 2008
Cat Deeley will host Lifetime's The Big Match, some sort of dating/reality/game show.
Shimmy Online interviews Benji Schwimmer.
Here's an early review of Step Up 2 The Streets, which includes the choreography of Dave Scott. The good news is: there's plenty of dancing.
This sounds like overkill to me, but what do I know? A year-long celebration of the 25th anniversary of Michael Jackson's Thriller includes:
"Thrillercast," a groundbreaking 40-episode podcast event, launches on February 12th and will be updated weekly throughout 2008. The series features icons of music, screen and culture including hip-hop legend Darryl "DMC" McDaniels, superstars Nick Cannon and Chris Brown, choreographers Shane Sparks and Mia Michaels from the hit show "So You Think You Can Dance," and dozens of other special guests. Each episode takes us behind the scenes into their lives to explore their own personal experiences with Thriller and its influence on them, both personally and professionally. "Thrillercast" will be available for free through iTunes, Zune, and all major podcast providers, as well as directly through www.michaeljackson.com.
Blogger Daneolicious danced as an extra in the filming of American Mall, the MTV film featuring our own Neil Haskell.
Our friend Yessy Gomez is sponsoring the "Just Showin' Off" Showcase, an event in Grand Rapids, Mi. to benefit "dancers in attending the auditions for "So you think you can dance" because they are not coming to Chicago this year!" It's Sunday at 6:30 at the Spectrum Theater.
The Canadian Press interviews Randy Jackson about America's Best Dance Crew, which premieres tomorrow night on MTV. He talks a bit about dance from a musician's perspective:
"Listen, I've been doing music my whole life and every up-tempo song I've ever made, you often wonder how people are going to dance to it," the 46-year-old musician told The Associated Press.
"You go to clubs, you try and find out how they're moving to it. Is the beat fast enough? Dance is like the right hand of music. There couldn't be any dance without music, right? And vice versa," he said at a studio off Sunset Boulevard where the show was taping recent auditions.
Reality Raver reports from Australia:
The SYTYCD roadtrain hit Sydney and you knew the auditions were going to be full of drag queens, freaks, wannabees and of course some kick arse dancers.
The judges arrived together in a limo, very different from American Idol judges, which would indicate:
a) they still get on, or
b) the budget is much smaller than Idol.
Jason Coleman clearly was paying homage to Sydney by dressing as a leather man, whilst Bonnie Lythgoe is embracing the return of '80's fashions wearing a lime green leather jacket. Having a phobia about all things fluro I hated it.
First auditionee was Hilton, an 18 year-old boy whose...
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...African parents had quit their other jobs to clean the studio where he danced so he could get free lessons.
I hope they are also getting a wage, otherwise they are getting mightily ripped off. Was this an example of what has happened under John Howard's industrial reforms?
Hilton's routine was a mix between hip hop and modern dance, as well as coordinating taking his shoes on and off whilst dancing. I must confess I was hoping his jacket would come off as well. This wish was partially granted whilst he was listening to the judges due to hotness he stripped down to his singlet. I think this helped get him a ticket straight through to the top 100, well it definitely got Bonnie's vote.
Next up was Jess, Hilton's girlfriend. She did modern dance as well. Bonnie thought she was "laidback on it" and was sent through to the choreography round, where she acquitted herself admirably to get through to the top 100.
Vanessa, 23, a Pilates instructor blew the judges and me away both with her beautiful ethereal asian looks, and her graceful and controlled dancing. Actually her body was so hot you can see hundreds of people signing up for Pilates tomorrow.
Jason kept on gushing "You are so beautiful". I thought hang on, could this girl convert him back from the other side of the fence! Anyway top 100 for her.
Jason Coleman is reminding me a bit of Mia Michaels in season 2 of SYTYCD when she was really intense, and at times slightly patronizing, I noticed this season she toned it down a bit and was more relaxed/approachable.
Next was Alberto who was just pure Sydney. This Bali born dancer wore stiletto knee high boots tucked into his jeans, and then just started gyrating. It was hilarious, and at least he danced in time. But Matt Lee summed it up perfectly when he said "I was waiting for the ping pongs to start flying."
Sarah a dancer who had successfully battled anorexia and bulimia did a contemporary dance to the James Blunt song "Goodbye My Lover". She was great and I even noticed a few Mia Michaels moves in there, and it was even more amazing to hear her lowest weight was 28 kilos. How is she alive? She got a top 100 ticket. Then Jason Coleman put his Tyra Banks life coach hat on and gave a talk to the kiddies at home about the insidious disease.
Finally some ballroom dancers, Stephanie & Henry who danced the jive. Now apparently in other states the girl ballroomers have been getting put through but not the guys. In this case it was the opposite, with Henry noticeably superior to Steph. He was put straight through, but she was having to go through the evening session, which to my surprise she did well, and got her top 100 ticket.
Next was Chris who danced hip hop to James Brown, which was cool. He did this great move by taking his shirt off while breakdancing. If he fails here he could definitely liven up a male strip revue.
No need to fall back on that yet as after the choreography he got through to the top 100.
Just as Jason Coleman was saying "I don't like boys who dance girly" in rocked Wil, a former Mr Gay Australia, who thought he was fierce (I raised one eyebrow as he said that). I really liked this guy, it is the only time I have seen camp hip hop. It was atheletic but camp. We will see more of him as he got through to the top 100 after proving himself in the evening session.
Danielle is a contemporary dancer, whose technique I thought was ordinary, was given a lifeline by Bonnie into the choreography round. The tears from herself and her mother may have helped. However she proved me wrong by gaining a ticket in the top 100, and learnt the Matt Lee routine easily whereas others were flailing about like roadkill.
More ballroomers were up next, Matt and Delia. After Bonnie said "Matt is doing all the work". Matt cast her aside as quickly as a cheap hooker in a laneway, to try and prop up a spot for himself, the judges were a bit shocked considering they had been dancing together for 6 years. If you are on Survivor he is not the person to form an alliance with.
As Jason said this is about being Australia's favourite dancer, his "I can't be carrying her" comments will not endear him to the people who vote. However he must have redeemed himself in the evening session as he got his top 100 ticket. While all this was going on I am presuming Delia is now looking for a new dancing partner.
Khaly, a Thai-Australian body piercer, whose face was totally metalled up was never going to be auditioning with a ballet routine. His hip hop I thought was not as good as some of the others we had seen, and Jason agreed with me and said no. However the other two judges said yes to choreography, and he then got his ticket to the top 100.
Kassie, a 21 year old Delta Goodrem look-a-like was a model who appears in ads and video clips. She herself was not without some Delta health issues, previously having a tumour on the knee. Her dancing was good, her choreography sucked.
Jason said "As a canvas you are fabulous, but your dancing left me underwhelmed."
But she got through to the evening session where she got her ticket for the final 100.
Next was Whitney, a really strong gymnastic type dancer, lots of flips and extremely dexterous moves. She was put through to choreography where she was doing well, however when it came to the last time to do the routine, she completely flubbed it.
When told she was not going any further she was devastated crying on Natalie Bassingthwaighte (hardly sighted this episode), then had a meltdown in the toilet cubicle. Jason, again channelling Tyra, went into the loos and said this is not to ruin her life. He then bequeathed her with a second chance told her to come back for day 2 choreography tomorrow.
Kirsten the youngest contestant in the competition, only 17 at the time of the audition, but would be 18 by 1 Feb, managed to get through to the evening session. However she blew it and was not particularly comforted by Jason's parting words "You are the best dancer leaving". I suspect she will be back next year.
Gosh was that only Day 1.
Day 2 started off with a great hip hop duo, Josh and Sione. Their repartee made a light note in the episode, and after struggling through choreography got their top 100 tickets.
Then the best hip hop of the day or even the competition came through, his name was Don, and he rocked. He reminded me a bit of Hok from Season 3 SYTYCD, he was on the do not pass go you are on the express train to the top 100.
Then Oli, a stockbrocker by day, B boy by night auditioned. He managed to piss the judges off for the first 30 seconds of his routine of doing nothing but walking around. After being told to pull his finger out he actually cracked a few good moves and got through to the evening session, where he received his top 100 spot.
BJ a dancer since he was four, was unwell. His audition did not go well. "To many turns" He had the ignominy of being the first person treated by the medics. However he pulled himself together and managed to get a spot in the top 100 during the evening session.
Then there were a string of pole dancers. Clearly becoming trendy after Prime Minister Kevin Rudd made it a form of legitimate recreation.
Two actually made it through to the top 100 after choreography.
With Bonnie saying she was a new fan of the style. You had to wonder whether Bonnie may introduce pole dancing in the revitalized relationship with separated hubby Nigel.
Graeme a cute 19 year old contemporary dancer who Bonnie thought was "Pure, honest, and a dancer" was put straight through into the top 100.
This then put pressure on his dance teacher Michael Boyd, who is also a choreographer to perform well.
Now this guy was one of the best dancers we had seen, but he had a meltdown, thinking he was terrible and walked off stage. The judges called him back as said you weren't as bad as you thought you were and gave him a top 100 ticket.
Personally I would have sent him to the evening session for the walk out. Where was his professionalism? We have all been stuck up on a karaoke stage realizing after 2 lines we are sounding like the cats meow but you just have to suck it up and finish it.
This guy was superb, but for some reason I just don't see him making the top 24.
Then Nikki, the B Girl Krumper who had had the meltdown in Melbourne after being rejected turned up in Sydney. In a fantastic strategic move, she did not do hip hop in her audition but did contemporary dancing. This impressed the judges and got her through to the choreography.
At the end of the evening there was just Nikki and Whitney left to hear their fate, which was ironic considering both:
a) had been given a second chance, and
b) had had a meltdown in a toilet cubicle.
It was good news for both and they would be continuing on in the competition.
Next is the top 100 or really it is the top 140 round in Sydney. By Monday evening we will have our top 24. As the first show is being filmed next Friday for Sunday screening.
As a parochial Sydneysider I did notice the standard of dancing was higher then the other states, not unusual as this is where most of the dance work is. However, because it was the last city and there were few spots left they had to judge it harsher. Maybe producers need to think about going to Sydney and Melbourne first so they can set the standard for the contestants, as some really talented people had to miss out for lesser dancers from the smaller cities.
Obviously my theory could be wrong, however I will be surprised if Sydney and Melbourne don't have most of the top 24 positions.
On her Myspace blog, Sabra Johnson has big news about her upcoming international travel plans:
Australia has some great news! I am coming along with Kameron in April. We are going a number of places which I can't remember at the moment but I am sure about Sydney and Melbourne. We are so stoked about it and I know I'm probably not going to want to leave! If you want to find out a little more I'm sure Kameron will have all the info before me so just check out his page. We know how slow I am with mine :). I can't wait to meet Australia! Canada I'm still not sure when that will happen but hopefully soon.
I'm just guessing here, but won't the Australian show's finals be in April?
Tuesday, February 5, 2008
Click photos to enlarge
We had previously reported that dancewear makers Sugar and Bruno had signed season 2 favorite Kameron Bink as a spokesmodel. Today we get news that they will also feature a Kameron Signature Series. A spokesperson tells us:
Sugar and Bruno Dancewear has signed Kameron Bink to be Sugar and
Bruno’s Spokesman and Model for its new Men’s line that will be
revealed March 2nd at the DRN (Dance Retailer News) Expo in Orlando
Kameron was an instant fit and match for Sugar and Bruno. Kameron’s
sense of fashion in his everyday wear, lead to the inspiration behind
our new men’s line. Kameron’s insight for dance and streetwear, on
and off the stage, is a perfect match for the fashionable apparel
that is being sought after in today’s market. Our entire men's line
is inspired by Kameron.
Sugar and Bruno will also be working with Kameron Bink to create a
“Kameron Signature Series,” which will include girls and guys apparel
unveiling March 2nd exclusively online at www.sugarandbruno.com.
More photos after the jump.
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Photos courtesy of Sugar and Bruno
Fox Utah has a video report from the first day of auditions in Salt Lake City.
The Salt Lake Tribune was there too.
Kristin at EOnline says Hok and Dominic's Quest crew tried out for America's Best Dance Crew, but their contract with 19 Entertainment prohibited their participation.
Shimmy Online has interviews with Sara Von Gillern, Musa Cooper, and Dan Karaty. Dan hints that we may see him guest-judging on the Australian show.
Apparently, Dan is a good judge of football talent too. His Super Bowl prediction from last week:
“It’s going to be a GIANT upset. Let’s just hope Randy Moss can handle the loss better than T.O. did. Sniffle, sniffle.Giants 28, Patriots 23.” — DAN KARATY, choreographer (So You Think You Can Dance)
Blogger Mr. Melodicus gives us an alternate take on the premiere episode of So You Think You Can Dance Australia:
And then our host appears. In case you haven’t been flicking through the pages of your local TV Guide recently, the job was given to Rogue Traders lead singer Natalie Bassingthwaighte. No, wait, Bassinghthwaithe. Or is it Basghsighthwaighthte? Who knows, but there are far too many letters. I prefer Cat Deeley the minute Bassinghthwhaihththththe opens her mouth, complete with her nauseating nose inflexions and grating Australian twang.
We’re given little more time to analyse our hostess as we are instantly transported to Perth, the setting for the first round of auditions. But wait! Here she is again!
“This is an ABSOLUTE MASSIVE TURNOUT in Perth…HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS have turned out here today!!” screams Bashingtwit as she scurries up and down the line of maybe one thousand people and assuring her audience she knows nothing about adverbs. Hundreds of thousands? It’s as if she’s insinuating the entire population of Perth were there.
Monday, February 4, 2008
Reality Raver reports from Australia:
A bit of advice for all wannabe SYTYCD contestants if you want to get through to the final 100 audition in a smaller city where the talent is not as high. The judges Bonnie Lythgoe, Jason Coleman, and Matt Lee are so glad to see someone not mediocre you get through to the choreography round easily or a ticket straight to Sydney.
If you can combine that with a good sob story you are almost guaranteed a ticket to the final 100.
You knew Adelaide was going to be poor as it was only given 20 mins tv time (including commercials) out of a a 90 minute show, and the standard was noticeably below Melbourne.
Melbourne was expected to rock and it did.
The show started in Melbourne with the judges giving a pre-audition pep talk where they outlined what they did not like.
Matt does not like clicking. Bonnie doesn't like looking at the floor, and Jason does not like miming.
First auditioner for the day was...
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David 19 an asian hip hop guy. Apparently his parents don't approve of his passion for dance, and would like him to study, study, study and get a good job. He was amazingly acrobatic, and the judges liked his 'powerful trick' and he was given a shot at the afternoon choreography. After that he got his ticket to Sydney.
Next up was 23 year old Courtney a little pocket rocket who at one stage was not going to audition. She threw herself about the stage in a contemporary routine. At first they told her to front up to the choreography, however after being moved by her confessing she had not had much technique training they called her back to give her a ticket straight to Sydney.
Another heartstring story was Geoffry "drumstick" a half deaf, and half blind due to a congenital condition. He just wanted to dance "while he still can". He was a competent B-Boy/breaker and he was put through to learn Matt Lee's choreography, where he acquitted himself well enough to get the longed for ticket.
The best thing about Melbourne was it brought some of the kooky people out to audition.
The best of these was Melissa an "interpretative dancer" who writhed around the floor, surprisingly in time. Jason picked she was trying to be a salmon, no one else did. It must have been his experience doing opening ceremony for big events where all sorts of weird creatures run around stadiums.
Matt Lee described her routine as "crazy, weird" and at times it was like she was stuck on the end of a jack hammer. On a more positive note she did keep time. Her journey ended there.
CJ turned out to be Australia's equivalent to American Idol's Alexis. After being told his pseudo madonna routine was failure he had a spray at the judges in the 'diary' room, plus a few hand gestures.
Rhys an effeminate guy with a mohawk, and green flouro eyeshadow which matched his pants (not a good look) did an aerobics like routine which got him through to the evening round and then onto Sydney. I would be surprised if he got further then that.
Next a family and some friends turned up to audition in the hip hop style. First up was Demi who break dances. She immigrated from the Phillipines with her mother and her three other siblings, and had a bit of a tough life.
I thought Demi's B Girl routine was one of the most refreshing of the episode, and she managed to get her ticket to sydney after doing Matt Lee' choreography.
Her girlfriend Nikki was not so lucky and after being told she won't be going to Sydney stormed off into a toilet cubicle.
Demi's deaf sister Lorraine also auditioned, she was not the worst audition we have seen but it was nowhere good enough.
Then the brother Carlos came on, and he popped and hip hopped. He was great with moves I had never seen before, and unsurprisingly he got his ticket.
Day 2 in Melbourne and the talent continued. However Bonnie needs to get a new stylist as the bright purple leather jacket, and the matching glasses with the purple tint was eyecatching but in the wrong way.
JD a 26 hip hop choreographer was nervous, but was there to face his fears. His was a laid back controlled, smooth routine. The judges were gushing. Jason gave him a standing ovation and said "you are my favourite dancer so far". No guesses where he was heading.
Next was Mac a samoan guy whose routine was a cross between the german thigh slapping dance that one would see at Octoberfest, and Tap dogs. Also there was a bit of breaking in there as well. I was very surprised when he bypassed the evening session and got straight into the top 100. Note take cute baby to the audition with you.
The last couple for the day were Kelly and Keiran who were Lindy hoppers. How good is this genre, it is such a happy dance. They were sent through to the choreography round as well. At the completion of that they were asked what they would do if only one was sent through, after much contemplation Keiran said it should be Kelly to go through. However the judges had shown they had learnt some reality tv tricks and showed they both would be going to Sydney.
Adelaide was pretty slim pickings, with mainly girls getting through. However there were some highlights.
Laura a beautiful girl, with great turns and leaps, but with a wobbly arabesque got through.
Maddy a 26 year old single mum who wore an outfit like the one in the Toni Basil video Mickey, except with a gothic twist to it,was straight to Sydney.
Another Laura a pretty blond girl who has been dancing since three, had to go through the choreography rounds before getting her ticket, partly due to the cheesy routine she performed.
Two sisters who had been dancing for ten years came to audition. Tamara who had more pep, danced to Unchain My Heart got through to Sydney. Matt Lee had a glint of lust in his eyes when he watched this girl, however it could have just been the music Joe Cocker can have that effect on people as they think of the movie 9 1/2 Her sister Nikki had to dance through the choreography rounds before learning they would be sharing a room in Sydney.
Last was Keyte who had been dancing since she was three, she cracked during the choreography when told if blew the routine she would be eliminated, which is what happened. Natalie Bassingwaite comforted her and gave her a Tyra Banks like pep talk to get her to cheer up.
The judges are still formulating their roles. I think Jason Coleman is the leader of the pack, but he just needs to make sure that he does not come over as patronising.
Bonnie Lythgoe is a softy she tears up every time a contestant does, and Matt Lee remains enigmatic.
Natalie is just playing the mother hen role at the moment and her big test will be when the final shows start. It will be very hard to match Cat Deeley's sassy wit, combined with her warmth.
Next stop Sydney which should be a cracker.
The opening episode of So You Think You Can Dance Australia not only had the highest ratings of the evening, but was also the highest rated premiere ever for Network Ten with almost 2 million viewers. That's impressive when you consider that Australia's population is roughly one tenth the size of the US. TEN's chief programming officer is optimistic:
"We're confident we have a hit on our hands and Australians will continue to turn on in droves to relish this type of high-spirited, energetic dance fun." "One thing that points to Dance Australia's continuing success is that fact that the ratings increased throughout its one hour 45-minute run - an indication that viewers liked what they saw and kept watching."
David Knox at TVTonight liked the show, though I have to take issue with one comment:
15yo Caleb, who was disallowed entry only on grounds of age, was a generous inclusion. Dancing to "Mad World" it wasn't hard to see why. Hopefully he finds a career before a three year wait for a show that might damage true talent.
Which does he think might damage talent, the three year wait? Or appearing on the show?
Nathaniel Cooper at The Daily wasn't impressed with the judging:
Despite being experts in their field, Bonnie and Jason became a bit boring with their comments after each dancer … and did we really need to see Jason stopping the music with his flamboyant hand flourishes EVERY time?
There definitely wasn’t enough drama between the judges themselves. They appear to all love each other to pieces (except that brief moment where Matt disagreed with Bonnie and I thought she was going to fall off her chair) so instead they were reduced to creating drama from the contestants' life stories, which was moving but mostly irrelevant.
Bonnie Lythgoe visited a radio podcast after the show, though you have to slog through some cricket coverage to get to it.
LINK to audio file
Speaking of Bonnie, Reality Raver says she and Nigel may be reconciling.
The Defamer claims that a dancer we'll see in the top 10 males also has a female stage persona.
Would Uncle Nigel ever allow such a thing?
Sunday, February 3, 2008
BSYTYCD is pleased to present the first report from our Australian correspondent, Reality Raver. UPDATED!
It was the first episode of the much anticipated Australian edition of So You Think You Can Dance. It was time to forget the fantastic, and entertaining US series and watch this with an open mind.
Some issues that were raised in this first episode were:
1. Does the host Natalie Bassingwaite own a bra?;
2. The judges Bonnie Lythgoe, Jason Coleman, and Matt Lee improved as the show progressed, was it first audition nerves for them?;
3. Why do all hip hop dancers have nick names?
4. How many hats does Matt Lee own and why does he wear them? ;and
5. Is a pole really an appropriate accessory to audition with ?
The first city to be hit by the SYTYCD road train was Perth. Auditionees had to be between 18-35, and only 20 will be chosen to be in the finals.
Bonnie Lythgoe was looking for "different, amazing, and talented."
Johnathan Coleman was looking for "star quality", and
Matt Lee wanted "versatility".
The dancers now had 90 seconds to strut their stuff in front of the judges...
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with the possibility to getting a ticket straight to Sydney (the equivalent of a ticket to Las Vegas), a second chance in the choreography round, or just a straight out NO.
First up were Brendon Humphries 35, aand Jemma Armstrong 19 who together did a ballroom/contemporary dance with lots of writhing, the judges loved it " engaging, sexy, fabulous" and they were on the way to Sydney.
Nicole 'Lamb' a long time dancer of 15 to 20 years auditioned in a hip hop style and then half way through switched to contemporary. So she definately ticked Matt Lee's versatility box and got her ticket to Sydney. Nicole was cute with personality so I will be surprised if we don't see more of her.
Angel a model auditioned because she wanted to show them that models can dance, well actually I think just to self promote. But she did provide some unintended comic relief. She sauntered in wearing 10 inch gold stilettos and as the music started sashaying like she was on a catwalk. She then kicked the shoes off and did some uncoordinated back flips. Unsurprisingly she got the big thumbs down. But this won't be the last we see of her as I am sure we will see her at the Perth auditions for Australia's Next Top Model.
Stephanie Telick a 20 year old from Perth whose ambition is to dance at the Moulin Rouge was put straight through to Sydney. Bonnie Lythgoe obviously does not think much of the famous Parisian dance hall as she turned up her nose and said "you are better then Moulin Rouge".
Next up was a first for any SYTYCD series, Sermsah an indigenous Australia did some traditional aboriginal dancing. Bonnie was particularly impressed as she had never seen this type of dancing before. He was a great mover, and was put through straight to Sydney, however it will be interesting to see how he handles more structured choreagraphy. Sermsah was covered in white makeup, and when he hugged Natalie Bassingwaite I thought a costume change coming up, however she walked away unblemished.
Kelly did a slightly burlesque (that is being polite) routine, by using a man prop and dancing to the throbbing Nine Inch Nails song 'I want to **** you like an animal'. It was over the top raunch, lots of leg spreading and floor writhing, but she could kind of dance.
Jason Coleman gave her the scolding "that song should not be put in a public forum" before saying no to her. But she was given a life line by the two other judges and sent to choreography. However after the evening session she still had no ticket to Sydney.
Edward "Edit" was a b-boy who did an ok hip hop routine, however he was still having to prove himself in the evening session, after dancing to Matt Lee's choreography he did manage to snaffle a ticket.
Next up was Brisbane where two thirds of the auditioners were girls. I noticed a big improvement in the judges once they hit Brisbane, they were a bit snappier with their pontifications, clearly first day nerves were over.
First up was Camilla Jamavich (sic) who auditioned in Doc Martin like sneakers, her contemporary style was liked by the judges however they were a bit concerned about her stamina. However they still gave her a ticket to the top 100.
Then hip hop dance trio 365 crew auditioned, and they were entertaining. The judges then got into a discussion about who was better. One lucky member got straight through, with the other two having to battle it out in the choreography session. Lucky for them they will all get to hang in Sydney.
Next up Anthony Ikin auditioned, his brother Ben Ikin was a successful footballer and now Channel 9 rugby league commentator. I was a bit worried about what he was going to be like after we were told he was a five time aerobics champion, was it going to be like a Jane Fonda workout, but Anthony turned out to be one of the highlights of the first episode. His dancing was sublime, and I will be surprised if he does not make it to the top 20.
If he does make it to the final shows will Channel 9 let brother Ben attend the show which is shown on a rival network. Considering 9 they did not let Bert Newton go and see his wife Patti dance on Dancing With the Stars it would appear unlikely.
Ben & Liam looked like joke dancers in bright coloured lycra. However they were ok, with Liam getting a second chance in the evening, however the judges ended his journey there.
Emma a former Australian Ballet School student auditioned, and she was good, however cracked under a grilling from the judges when asked about her priorities, and where dance was on that list. Bonnie Lythgoe questioned her motivation when asking "which was more important, boyfriends, beaches or ballet" after an unsure answer, she started sobbing and the judges thought she was just too fragile to be put through to handle the weekly criticism.
Next was 19 year old Jack Chambers whose ambition is to dance on Broadway. He wowed the judges with his routine. He reminded me of the season 2 winner of SYTYCD the delightful Benji Schwimmer, however dare I say it Jack also has sex appeal! Again I will be surprised if he doesn't top 20.
Sexy brazilain Gianne came on and salsa'd around the stage it was good enough to get her through to the choreography round where she won her ticket to Sydney.
Last for Day 1 in Brisbane was Malena, a salsa dancer without a partner, they are apparently to hard to find. After a woeful solo audition where the judges were more concerned about her skirt riding up she was sent packing. As Bonnie said " This is what I don't want to see on this show". In a post audition interview she whined but Britany Spears wears skirts and she has nothing on underneath. Yes Malena, but Britany is famous and moderately talented and you are not.
Day 2 in Brisbane started of with Carl an 18 year old who had been dancing fulltime for a year. He tackled a classic Nureyev piece. The judges criticised that it is hard to emulate the great Rudolph however he was given a chance to prove himself later on where he was then given the much wanted top 100 ticket.
The heart string story of the day was 29 year old Bessie from El Salvador who escaped during the civil war, however some of her family was left behind. The judges were very moved by her story, Bonnie even shed a tear. She was not trained but her hip hop routine was good enough to get through to the choreography in the evening.
Caleb a 15 year old had come down from Innisvale, North Queensland to audition clearly he did not read the rules clearly as he needed to be 18 to get on the show. This isn't Idol honey. However the judges did let him dance for them, and he was fantastic. He just has to hope the show goes for 3 seasons so he can get his crack at it as he would be a certainty to make it through to the finals.
Last was Gabriel Cumberford a 19 year old uni student who had fallen off the rails in the prior years with drugs and street life. His weird kind of animalistic routine was baffling, probably not helped by describing himself as a monkey.
Jason Coleman gave him a no, but the other 2 gave him a go in the evening round. He did not handle the rejection well and was punching the walls outside and crying as he wanted to get straight through to Sydney. Unfortunately for him the evening session still did not give him the much wanted ticket.
The first episode was over and yes it was enjoyable, and shows potential. Natalie Bassingwaite was gorgeous and bubbly, though her limited air time was spent hugging contestants. The judges are still forming their persona's and finding their TV feet. Bonnie seems lovely, but I hope Jason Coleman gets a bit edgier. But the good news is it does appear Australia does have some dancing talented that should keep us riveted for the the next 3 months and once the judges get to know each other better it should be a cracking show.
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