The competition dance show “World of Dance” returns for a second season with a whole new group of dancers.
Creator and judge Jenifer Lopez returns with judges Derek Hough, and Ne-Yo to help find the best dancers in the world.
The dancers are scored on their presentation, creativity, performance, musicality, and originality.
This season Junior Team joins the other categories of Upper Team, Junior, and Upper (adult).
Jenna Dewan returns to host the show and mentor the competitors.
First up in the qualifier rounds are Indian dancers Desi Hoppers – a Hip-Hop dance troupe. Dancing to “Shape of You” by Ed Sheeran, the guys brought the house to their feet. Jennifer called it a great way to start off the season; adding that she loved how they mixed their Indian culture into the dance. Saying that the routine was just fun, Ne-Yo said that the dance was through the roof in entertainment value. Calling it pure entertainment, Derek said that the guys nailed it. Dancers need to earn a score of at least 80 in order to move on to the next level. Desi Hoppers scored 96 points for their dance.
Up next is the Los Angeles Hip-Hop Fusion duo Sean and Kaycee with a dance that began with them blindfolded. Saying the duo touched their hearts, Jennifer said the dance was beautifully done. Derek said that the routine was well thought out and very well executed; adding that they stood out. Ne-Yo noted that the duo were completely in sync…even when they wer blindfolded. Sean and Kaycee scored 96 points for their dance.
The Los Angeles crew S-Rank (S for Superior) gave a performance that Jennifer called it one of the stankiest routines she has ever seen; adding that it was awesome and so together. Calling the routine incredible, Derek noted that the movements were short but effective. Ne-Yo noted that when the choreography is good, the team is good. S-Rank scored 91 points for their dance.
Sixteen year old Contemporary dancer Jaxon Willard is a young man of colour who was adopted into a white family. Dancing to “Fragile” he choreographed the dance as an expression of who he is and his acceptance of that self. The performance brought the judges to their feet and tears to many eyes. Jennifer called it a very special moment that captivated the whole audience and made a bunch of them cry. Saying that he was proud of Jaxon, Ne-Yo added that he 100 percent felt Jaxon. Saying that Jaxon was beautiful, Derek noted that Jaxon embodied what it is to be a dancer and a storyteller. Jaxon scored 94 points for his dance. Ne-Yo said that dance is not just about moving your body, but about moving people.
The Canadian Junior Team Flip performed to “Feeling Good”. Ne-Yo loved the pictures and formations. Noting that the dancers were locked into each other, Jennifer said that the dance needed more diversity..Derek liked the contrast of the music and the choreography. Flip edged their way to the next round with a score of 82.7 points.
The Japanese duo of Hilty and Bosch have been Locking together for 20 years but Jennifer wanted to see a higher level of difficulty. Derek enjoyed the performance but was wondering how the performance was going to hold up in the scores. Ne-Yo wanted to be wowed; but noted that if he was just watching for enjoyment, then they would have had him. The duo failed to make the cut with a score of 78.3 points.
The final performance of the night was the Chilean Salsa duo of Karen y Ricardo. The nine time champions have been dancing since they were nine years old and revealed that they will be getting married. Their fast paced dance had Derek jumping on the desk and the house screaming. Saying that is what you call setting the stage on fire, Jennifer noted that she has seen a lot of Salsa on the stage but their dance was on another level. Saying that he loved it, Derek called the performance incredible. Ne-Yo called it the first million dollar performance they had seen. With two scores of 100, the duo earned the highest score ever on the show with a 99.7.
“World of Dance” returns next week with more performances.