Last week we were in my hometown, and this week, we’re in my new town! There’s a rather awesome symmetry to that. Cat reminds us that last year’s champion came from the Atlanta auditions and that someone here now is hoping to take her place. Atlanta or not, whoever wins this season has a very tough act to follow as Melanie was just so good at EVERYTHING, seriously. This week’s judges are Nigel, Mary, and Ms. Debbie F-ing Allen. I love that the two shows I have recapped so far this year have featured Debbie, who is one of the coolest ladies on this earth. Symmetry all around! You know the drill — they dance, and are either given a ticket to Vegas or a pass to choreography to dance for a second chance to get to Vegas. Everyone else goes home and is sad.
The first dancer up is Audrey Case from Oklahoma, and the info that she gave the producers about herself is that she can, “fart with [her] neck and lick [her] elbow.” Nigel warns not to say this but makes her show it off and… yep, that’s a squeaky neck fart. She’s a contemporary dancer and when she moves, her flexibility and grace are just amazing and the farting is mostly forgotten. She also grins throughout, but it doesn’t seem fake — she just seems to have that much joy inside her when she dances and she can’t help smiling. She gets a standing ovation from the audience and the judges; Nigel calls her “magical.” Debbie Allen leads them in a chorus of, “Ticket to Ride,” and she’s off to Vegas.
We get our first produced package of the week introducing us to Boris, Andre and Cyrus who make up a hip hop dance group called Dragon House. They live with a ton of other dancers in a 3-bedroom apartment and I can’t help but pity their downstairs neighbors. At least they do seem like really nice guys. The first up is Boris Penton whose electric blue hair is shaved into two mohawks that from the front look like horns. He pops and locks with a super fluid grace to classical music which makes for a really unique and beautiful combo. He also gets a long standing O from the audience and judges. Nigel calls him mesmerizing, Mary finds him extraordinary, and Debbie calls his dancing, “pure artistry.” Of course he gets a ticket right to Vegas, and his 5,000 roommates cheer heartily.
Next up is Joshua Alexander, who is a musician as well as a dancer, so Nigel expects that to show in his performance. He’s contemporary, and though he’s dancing in tall black socks, I can’t hold that against him because his routine is gorgeous. In response, the judges simply all hold up tickets to Vegas. He goes up to the table where Debbie Allen practically pets him.
We have a “beating the odds” montage next: one kid who grew up poor in Chicago but joined a dance troupe, one girl who grew up with Tourette’s but who has worked to where her tics are not as severe as they once were, and one guy who lost his mother at a young age but found his life’s rhythm again in dance. All three are great, and all three go to Vegas.