Mormons, Pageant Girls, and Country Line Dancers. It must be dance auditions in Salt Lake City and Dallas. Being a Dallas resident, I was a tad concerned when the first few dancers they showed in Big D were total stereotypes. We’re not all cowboys and pageant queens (although those stereotypes definitely exist). But, in the end there were a few promising contestants. Here’s my take on who has the potential to progress past Vegas.
Salt Lake City Auditions
- Chelsie Hightower – This blond-haired 18-year old ball room dancer was quite impressive! She had great legs, great body language, and great movement.
- Gev Manoukian – This guy stands out from other hip hoppers we’ve seen because of his creativity and his fluid, graceful movements. Those qualities may help him succeed with different dance styles.
- Kelli Baker – You can certainly tell that she grew up in a house of dance (her mom is a choreographer). She looks super strong and poised, and had great stage presence. She was very fun to watch.
- Matt Dorame – This guy in the red gym shorts (that Nigel asked him to never wear again) was beautiful to watch. Pretty face, pretty technique.
Other notes about Salt Lake:
- Most awkward for me to watch was the mother of four who tried out. Good for her, for getting out of the house (something I’m starting to understand now that I stay home with my three month old), but auditioning on national television with those dance moves? It just made me uncomfortable…
- Why do the judges give certain bad dancers such a hard time while almost encouraging others? I have in mind Naomi Christensen, who grapevined and slid her way around the floor. Sure, she was awful, but was she really any worse than the Golden Inferno or that “Sex” guy? Yet, they gave her a super hard time about it. This is what I don’t like about the early audition rounds. Some of these people are deluded, some are just desperate for attention, but I hate to see anyone humiliated on national tv – even if they seem to deserve it.
- I wasn’t impressed with the two recently divorced friends who both ended up making it to Vegas. They looked like they were doing dance aerobics, which is what they’ve been doing at home.
- Overall, Salt Lake was a prime location for discovering talent.
- Joshua Allen – This guy from Fort Worth was very fun to watch and seems like a nice guy. He had lots of cool moves, is obviously very passionate about dance, and seems to have the skill to be versatile beyond hip hop.
- Arielle Coker – Although her partner, John, didn’t get to show much of what he could do, she was fascinating to watch. She’s exactly the type of dancer this show loves: fresh-faced, poised, and her movements seemed effortless. Actually, her style and presence remind me of another dancer from last season – Sabra!
It will be interesting to see which of these hopefuls make it to the Top 20, and which of the Top 20 we haven’t seen in their early auditions. How fun that we get two more hours of the show tonight!