World of Dance season 2 Qualifiers auditions continue tonight. Jennifer Lopez, Derek Hough and NE-YO are back on the judges panel, while Jenna Dewan serves as host.
In the end, there will be only one million dollar winner. That’s right–the last act standing wins $1 million dollars.
A total of 72 acts compete this season in the four age-based categories: Junior (17 years old and under, 1-4 dancers), Junior Team (17 years old and under, 5-15 dancers), Upper (18 years old and older, 1-4 dancers), and Upper Team (18 years old and older, 5-15 dancers).
The acts need 80 or above scores from the judges to advance to the Duels.
Jonas & Ruby – Junior – Ballroom – Ruby’s dad is her coach. He searched the whole world to find the best partner for his daughter and found Jonas in Lithuania. Dad speaks Spanish to them, although they don’t really understand. Hm. This Ruby girl seems familiar. Was she on SYTYCD Jr? Or AGT? ETA: Ruby and Jonas were AGT contestants in 2013 and in 2012 part of a larger group called the Untouchables choreographed by dad. Funny, it’s the stage dad–whom I found quite intense–that I remember the most. These two are kiddos, but they are no joke. They are 15 and 14 respectively. Jlo calls their “attack” super strong. Ne-Yo thinks Ruby is a star, but he’s got to give Jonas props too. Derek liked their mish mosh of styles. He thought their costumes were too “busy.” Jlo, of course, disagrees. OK. Her brother competed last year. Derek mentions a ballroom couple who failed to stay competitive and were knocked out in the duels. Whoops. That was her brother. Ne-Yo 85 – Jlo 87 – Derek 82 – 84.7
The Bradas – Upper Team – Hip Hop crew – They’re from New Zealand. Far way to travel. The crew consists of six dancers. They have a high intensity work out in order to execute their high intensity moves. They use a messenger bag as a clever prop. I think a robbery is in progress, as one of the dancers dons a mask. Ne-Yo says they make difficult things look easy. Impressively, one dancer had dived through the shoulder strap. Jlo the dancers athletes. Dancers are some of the best in the world, she says. “Lebron James could do what you do.” Ne-Yo 85 – Jlo 92 – Derek 86 – 87.7
Lucas Marinetto – Junior – Tap Dance – His mom is his “Stylist.” Dad really struggled with having a son who wanted to dance rather than play sports. As a result he became distant.
Asshole. Once he saw him dance, he came around. Oh, he throws in a few hip hop moves. He’s a funky dude. LOT’S of attitude and swag coming off this kid. Ne-Yo loves his energy. Jlo thinks he’s a showman like all the great tap dancers. The greats all have an individual style, she says, and he’s going to have to work on that. Derek suggests he use a prop or tell a story. Ne-Yo 82 – Jlo 84 – Derek 82 – 82.7
Expressenz – Junior Team – Contemporary – The eight girl team is from Indianapolis. One dancer came with a drawing of Derek that she created. They all seem to have a little crush on him. They’ve been dancing together since 9 years of age. Wait. Did that girl just call Indianapolis a “small town”? Huh. One of the girls will soon be graduating from high school and also the team. Oh. They’re dancing to Carrie Underwood’s “Something in the Water.” It’s a very joy filled performance. They beautifully mimic water at one point. Nicely choreographed. Derek was impressed with their turns, which they perfect by training with ankle weights. Derek wants them to be less “stage school.” NeYo calls it “effortless elegance.” But like Derek, he thought it felt too studied. Jlo disagrees! The routine made her heart soar. She wants a little more grit, but calls it beautiful. Derek goes backstage to say hello, and collect his picture. The girls squee. Ne-Yo 84 – Jlo 90 – Derek 87 – 87
Poreotics – Upper Team – Hip Hop – Popping, choreography and robotics mushed together = Poreotics! They won America’s Best Dance Crew and danced with Justin Bieber. They broke up for a bit to get jobs, go to school etcetera. Their thing is wearing sunglasses while they do the popping and the locking. Derek thinks they have all the ingredients to do well in the competition. But he thought it got a little boring. Ne-Yo agrees. Jlo disagrees. “My eyes were glued to you the entire time.” She says, “I didn’t want to miss one movement!” She thought their tricks were original. Ne-Yo 87 – Jlo 90 – Derek 87 – 88 – Ne-Yo and Derek gave out some high scores for being so critical.
Eva Igo – Junior – Contemporary – If that name sounds familiar, it should! Eva came in second place last season behind Les Twins. She’s back, and this time she wants to win it all. She has a fan army. And she’s only 15. She’s as super bendy as ever, in a very dramatic routine. The crowd is going wild. Jlo calls it “signature Eva” but 2018. “I am a little bit afraid!” she says. Derek was a little surprised she returned so soon. But then she danced and she gave him chills. “You are just a joy to watch,” says Ne-Yo. He loves her passion and energy. He warns her about the “monsters” in the competition waiting to take her down. Ne-Yo 96 – Jlo 95 – Derek 94 – 95