Dance War, Episode 1: Let’s Get Loud, Maybe, A Littleby Jill Jones -- 01/08/2008
Welcome to Dance War: Bruno vs. Carrie Ann! Tonight, the madness begins as Bruno Tonioli and Carrie Ann Inaba hit the road in search of the most talented amateur performers. I’d love to give you more insight than that, but I already shared everything I know in my preview article. So instead of speculating, let’s find out what’s in store for us.
The show begins with host Drew Lachey welcoming us. He also briefly explains how the show will work.
Carrie Ann tells us about her background. Did you know she was a pop star in Japan? No? Well, now you do.
Bruno says that America has the biggest talent pool. He also likes the fact that the judges are being judged.
The search for participants starts in New York City. During the dance portion of the tryouts, one of the dancers explodes. Yeah, you read that right. (Basically, a powder or something comes out of his clothing.) Bruno and Carrie Ann join in on the action.
That afternoon, the tryouts focus on singing and dancing. Monica does her best, but Bruno scolds her for singing with her eyes closed.
Quandrell tells Carrie Ann that he has never sung in a major competition before. He’s a bit rough, but overall, he does a nice job. When he dances again, Bruno calls him Leroy from Fame.
Next, we’re treated to clips of some really bad singers. Carrie Ann makes a face as if she’s going to vomit during the performances. Anthony settles her stomach, though, with a great singing audition. He follows it up with an equally impressive dance audition, which causes Bruno to yell, “Look at his feet.” Carrie Ann gives Anthony a hug; he made her cry.
Ashley causes Bruno to crave a cocktail because her shirt is sparkly. Yes, I know that doesn’t make sense, but just remember, this is Bruno. Unfortunately for Ashley, her dancing falls short. There may be hope, though, because Carrie Ann reminds Bruno that people can be trained to dance.
Samuel injures the bottom of his feet. The skin is literally falling off of them. Carrie Ann and Bruno allow him to skip the second portion of the dance auditions since they were impressed with him already. He sings and blows everyone away.
Sasha is up next. She sings “Amazing Grace” and has trouble with the high notes and key change. She’s upset and runs off the stage.
D. Diddy talks to the other contestants and comes across as an idiot. He sings in a very low voice, and when he dances, his wig comes off. D. Diddy is actually Drew.
When the day comes to a close, Bruno and Carrie Ann announce who is moving on to the Hollywood callbacks. They call people out in groups and tell them whether or not they are advancing.
The search moves on to Los Angeles. A few people strip during the auditions, some dress in gorilla and chicken costumes, but a few actually show they have real talent.
Shari impresses the crowd with her dancing. Bruno has doubts about her singing, though, and whether or not it is what he is looking for.
Kasey is as cute as a bowl of pudding. Her singing is on, but her dancing lacks finesse. Remember, though, Carrie Ann says that dancing can be taught and learned.
The Los Angeles auditions are interrupted by rain. By the time it stops, everyone is ready to get back to the competition.
Zack is up next. He forgets the words to his song, but it doesn’t matter; Bruno and Carrie Ann have heard enough to love him. He also proves to them that he can dance.
Elizabeth sings directly to Bruno. He eats it up; however, he doesn’t feel her dancing. He challenges her, though, to work hard and improve on her dancing if she is selected.
Andrea tells us that she isn’t a singer. She begins her performance and proves that she wasn’t exaggerating. Bruno says she sounds like Carol Channing. Her dancing is so much better than her singing. When she finishes, Bruno carries her off the stage.
Chris sings for the group and is simply amazing. Bruno and Carrie Ann also love his dance moves; they refer to him as a natural.
After the auditions are done, Bruno and Carrie Ann break the good and bad news to the performers.
The final tryouts are held in Nashville at the Tennessee State Fair. Bruno and Carrie Ann want to find raw talent. During the group auditions, the singing and dancing are both bad. Several talented people are found, though. The first is Kelsey; she looks like Deborah Gibson. She does well with her singing and dancing.
Her friend Megan is up next and she also does well. The next performer is another friend, Mary Alice. Unfortunately, the girls are not three for three; Mary Alice does poorly.
Phillip sings with soul and passion. He dances just as beautifully, and pulls Bruno and Carrie Ann into the act.
After seeing several other awesome performers, Bruno and Carrie Ann make their decisions and tell the performers.
The next stop is Hollywood and the callbacks. Everyone is excited to be there. Carrie Ann promises to weed out the weak.
Bruno tells the group that out of the 30 who are there, only 14 will continue on. Yikes. He also tells them that the next two days of their lives will be the toughest. They also encourage the dance and vocal coaches to push them as hard as they want.
First, the group works on singing “Dance to the Music.” Next, they focus on their dance routine. I can’t wait to see everything comes together; there are a lot of talented people in the group.
Bruno gets tough on the group. He says he wants to have fun, but when it comes down to it, he will cut anyone who isn’t performing up to par. I don’t like serious Bruno; he scares me.
Drew gives the group a pep talk before the final performance; this is what will determine who is cut and who makes it to the live show. During the performance, Bruno and Carrie Ann smile, groan, and shrug. After making their decision, they call everyone in one person at a time.
Phillip is in the final 14.
Angela doesn’t make it. She’s proud of herself, though.
Kelsey also receives good news. Her friend Megan doesn’t advance, though.
Corina, who has been flirting with the boys, turned it on in the finals; she’s moving on.
Zach is told he is in the final 14.
Quandrell doesn’t make the cut.
Obviously, that isn’t everyone. I couldn’t recognize everyone from the brief time I saw them. The final 14 will become clearer when they perform live.
Speaking of which, the show shifts gears and moves to the live portion of tonight’s program. Drew introduces Bruno and Carrie Ann, and then brings out the final 14:
They perform to “Let’s Get Loud.” Zach stands out to me; not only is he talented, he also seems relaxed while some of the others come across as nervous. Overall, the performance is enjoyable and comes together nicely despite some rough spots.
Next week, Bruno and Carrie Ann will pick their teams. Two performers will go home. I can’t wait.
What did you think about the show? Overall, it was a bit lackluster, but I’m sure it will pick up as the eliminations begin. No matter what, though, I’ll be back at RNO recapping all of the action, Bruno’s witty sayings, and everything in between. Join me, won’t you? Besides, what else is there to do on a Monday night?
Jill is an east coast mama who loves Michael Kors, Bea Arthur, and Maksim Chmerkovskiy. If she were in a room with the three of them, she might explode. She can be reached at email@example.com to discuss these individuals and other topics.
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