Can A Contemporary Dancer or Group Ever Win World of Dance??

Or a ballroom dancer or tappers, for that matter. As I noted in my final live blog post for the season, hip hoppers have always won, either in pairs or groups.

Season 1 – Les Twins
Season 2 – The Lab
Season 3 – The Kings

The Kings describe themselves as Bolly Hop but there is little Bollywood and lots of hip hop in most of their dances. Don’t get me wrong – I LOVE the Kings and I’m not disputing their win at all. Their routines were fantastic, they always got me excited, and so on. I might even go so far as to say that the other finalists’ routines didn’t quite live up to The Kings final routine.

Can any routine ever hope to live up to the excitement of a routine like The Kings final routine? As Hip Hop, or Bolly Hop, it’s always going to be high energy. Very high energy. Contemporary, most of the time, is NOT high energy.

Also need to say that this is not really a critique of the judging, per se. I think the judges, over all, do a great job in a very difficult situation.

So, what do you do to fix it, if it’s even broke?? I think I need to go back and watch the winner and runner up from each season. First up, Les Twins.

Coming in second to Les Twins was Eva Igo, followed very closely by Swing Latino. Side note, in Season 1, three finalists each danced twice. I’ve included (I think) their final performance.

Now, both of these routines are excellent. I actually loved Swing Latino and the final scores were VERY close. When you averaged the two dances together, Les Twins ended with a 93.8, Eva with a 93.7 and Swing Latino had a 93.2. A razor thin margin.

Season 2 was won by The Lab. I LOVE the Lab and I was rooting for them the whole way, no lie. But…who was the runner up?? Michael Dameski, another soloist doing contemporary. Now, I was not rooting for Michael. At the time I didn’t think he was all that and preferred either the Lab or Charity & Andres. But a pattern is emerging, ain’t it? ๐Ÿ™‚ Here’s the Lab’s final dance:

The Lab’s choreographer is VERY smart. They took the hip hop vibe, co-opted the contemporary emotions and came up with a dance that makes me weepy to this day. And there is no arguing with the synchronicity and the style of this dance. That’s a winner. Here’s Michael’s final routine.

Another good routine. No doubt. But does it stand up against The Lab?? And if not…why not? Of course, sometimes the final routines aren’t all equal and it comes down to contemporary versus hip hop. I would argue that Michael’s final routine didn’t deserve the win, compared to The Lab. It didn’t touch me, there didn’t seem to be anything special about it when compared to contemporary in general. That’s the way it goes sometimes and it brings up another question that I will discuss below.

Now, season three just happened, but let’s re-watch the dances with a couple days distance (and maybe clearer heads in some cases – yes, I saw ya’ll tweeting Derek telling him his scoring was crap). First, The Kings:

Now, don’t just watch the faces of the dancers and the judges – look at the faces on Zack Everhart and the other Unity LA dancers. They knew IN THE MOMENT after seeing that dance that they lost. There is no question – that dance was a work of art. Theirs was as well…but how do you compete with what the Kings did as a contemporary dancer? Here is Unity LA’s final performance:

This was a beautiful dance, a Monet like one of the judges said. What was wrong with it? Not a damn thing.

So now, essentially, you have three hip hop winners and three contemporary runners up. Coincidence? Probably not.

What are the differences between the winner and the runner(s) up? Well, there are a few things that are markedly different:

  • Many times it’s a younger dancer competing against people with more life experience to influence their dance. Dance is about emotion and your emotions are (usually) richer as you age.
  • Contemporary, as typically (way too typically) done, is slower, softer, beautiful, without the uptempo to get your heart pumping and the crazy tricks to make you hold your breath.
  • Hip Hop doesn’t have RULES; ballroom and, to a lesser extent, contemporary certainly do. One wrong step in a Tango and Derek will see it. One sickly foot in contemporary and Derek AND JLo will see it for sure. In Hip Hop, you pretty much have to fall over for it to be seen as an error.
  • Props. Lots and lots of props. Ballroom doesn’t do it. Contemporary rarely does it. Hip Hop?? All. The. Time. ย If you look at Les Twins final, or The Labs second to last dance…many props and used extremely well.
  • Jennifer likes to talk about narrative, and sometimes it seems that the emotion of contemporary is a substitute for a narrative. All three of the Hip Hop winners have a strong narrative or story going on. ย Most of the time, I watch contemporary or ballroom and can’t see the narrative. THERE IS NOTHING WRONG WITH NOT HAVING A STORY OR A NARRATIVE…but I do find it interesting that all three winners DO. It certainly seems to help.

That’s quite a few differences between winners and losers. The combination of them might make the difference. So, between Les Twins and Eva Igo – were the winners deserving? Well, all winners are deserving for one reason or another, but I didn’t (at the time) see Les Twins as better than Eva. Up until the finale, I had seen them as rather one-note. Eva seemed to have more range and she was many years their junior. Michael Dameski versus the Lab? Well, I thought the Lab were firing on all cylinders all season long – I think that win was clear cut. Much more clear cut than Season 1. Unity LA versus The Kings?? Again, I thought the Kings had the better finale dance…but if Unity LA had done their divisional final dance on the final would it have been closer? Probably. But they might not have won their division.

When thinking about the final routines and how it can make or break a competitor…should everything hinge on the finale night, or should there be more attention paid to the work they did across the whole season?? Did they grow and evolve? Were they fantastic on night one and then fade away? Should there be a scoring category that takes into account growth or lack thereof?? Or should the scores of the entire season be averaged?

It’s hard to ignore that hip hop has won all three seasons, and really, season 1 is the only time I take issue with that. So what can be done? What more can they do to level the playing field? Will contemporary EVER win?? For the love of god, Ballroom is the hardest and gets no love – not fair, IMO. Most of the time, I get the impression that Jennifer, at least, prefers contemporary to most other styles. And Derek is going to go tougher on his specialty while Ne-Yo and Jennifer are relatively clueless on ballroom/latin. So, what do you think? What can be done? And does the show REALLY need fixing or did it work out the right way every time??

May 8, 2019 I Written By

I'm a nerd and proud of it. Two degrees in geology also means I love BEER. :-) I'm also a Derek lover - proud of that too. So don't scream at those of us on this site and call us a bunch of "biased Derek-lovers" - it's just ME. :-) It may sound like I hate DWTS at times, but really, I'm just a snarky nitpicker from way back. And I'm cynical and jaded too. But I do love DWTS. :-)

New “World of Dance” Season 2 Promo to Air During Super Bowl

According to Derek Hough!! ย He posted this commercial on his instagram.

Here’s another add for all NBC shows that will air during the Super Bowl that included World of Dance

February 2, 2018 I Written By

I'm a nerd and proud of it. Two degrees in geology also means I love BEER. :-) I'm also a Derek lover - proud of that too. So don't scream at those of us on this site and call us a bunch of "biased Derek-lovers" - it's just ME. :-) It may sound like I hate DWTS at times, but really, I'm just a snarky nitpicker from way back. And I'm cynical and jaded too. But I do love DWTS. :-)

Pure World of Dance Season 1, Week 10 (Finale) – Power Rankings

So ends the inaugural season of World of Dance – can’t say I was entirely surprised with the result, given the song-and-dance we’ve seen from the judges all season long. That sadly made last night’s show a bit of a snooze for me, although I did thoroughly enjoy both of Swing Latino’s performances, one of Eva’s, and one of Les Twins’.

Aside from the general predictability of it all, I think the thing that bugged me most about Les Twins winning was that they were neither humble about it, nor did they really need it. Say what you will about them wanting to send their mom on a permanent vacation, but I go back to “You were touring with Beyonce and modeling for Jean-Paul Gautier before all this.” I sincerely doubt they were too bad off before WOD. On the other hand, Swing Latino members talked about family back in Colombia that they could really help if they won the million dollars, and Eva tearfully admitted that money had been tight in her family in the past year and that she’d like to at least be able to cover her own dance expenses. I thought the million would have genuinely been “life-changing”, as Derek put it, for those two – whereas it just seemed like a nice bonus for Les Twins, which they acted almost entitled to. I’ve really come to question their sincerity when it comes to their backstory, so this is just kind of another thing I’m having a hard time swallowing with regards to them. I only take solace in knowing that – to our knowledge – they can’t come back and win again next season ๐Ÿ™‚

Thankfully, it’s sounding like next season is getting a longer time slot, so hopefully things won’t be so hurried and disorganized; I’m also hoping it’s less predictable, given that the show is established now and doesn’t have to try so hard to grab an audience. So there’s that to look forward to ๐Ÿ™‚ I am still toying with how I’m going to do the power rankings next season, so feel free to offer up suggestions – we’re still just rolling with it here at PWoD, and things could change a bit next season.ย  I just ranked last night’s performances in terms of my own enjoyment once again…

1.) Swing Latino, first performance – This was the performance of the night for me – I just felt like they went above and beyond when it came to coming up with new tricks and staging for their dance, and they had my jaw on the floor multiple times.ย  I really came to appreciate that they were the last act standing that made an honest, conscious effort week after week to up their game and bring something new to the table – too many acts skated by doing the same things over and over, so they have a tremendous amount of respect from me.ย  Perhaps a bit messy in spots, as Derek pointed out, but considering that Columbian salsa is so fast, I generally cut them a bit more slack on messiness. I don’t really care when they’re tossing women 20 feet in the air ๐Ÿ™‚

2.) Eva Igo, second performance – Thank god for this, otherwise I think Eva may not have been able to hope for better than 3rd place after her first, lackluster performance.ย  Not sure that it really had much in the way of a cohesive storyline, but I liked that she returned to the displays of athleticism that got her to the finale to begin with – much more impressive than the aimlessness of her first performance.

3.) Les Twins, second performance – Probably my favorite performance they did all season, for the simple reason that it was DIFFERENT. Thought the mirrors were a nice touch, and the storyline seemed to sum up their season well. Ambitious song choice, but I feel like it paid off.

4.) Swing Latino, second performance – Not quite as glossy and impressive for me as their first performance, but perhaps cleaner, and still a solid effort. Seemed like a nice ending to the season for them.ย  Only thing I disliked were the ladies’ costumes…the gold ruffle was kinda distracting.

5.) Les Twins, first performance – Anyone else get the impression while watching this that they were really just kinda running out of ideas? The turntable felt like a bit of an afterthought – like, “Crap, throw in a turntable or something, I dunno, just make it different!” And then the part where one brother was dancing while the other just kinda ran around hyping up the crowd? That bordered on arrogant complacence for me, as if they were saying “Look, we don’t even really have to dance, we can just run around and still win this thing!!!!”

6.) Eva Igo, first performance – She didn’t screw up royally, per se, but I was just shocked at how completely underwhelming the choreography was – it was as if she ditched all the impressive shows of athleticism and just stuck with some vague flailing. I have to wonder if she was either using a different choreographer, or this was just a failed attempt at doing “something different” and kinda running out of ideas.

So those are my final thoughts – what are yours? Did the right act win? ?

August 9, 2017 I Written By

Medical device sales by day, reality TV blogger by night. Makeup artist, baker, hair model, and wannabe DIY-er when time permits, and a potty-mouth 24/7. Read more of me at puredwts.com, and follow me on Twitter & Instagram: @putuincespence

World Of Dance Derek Hough And Les Twins Talk And Dance On The Tonight Show

Below is Derek on The Tonight Show last night! He talks on Julianne’s wedding, World of Dance with Les Twins, and even dances OFF BEAT (and Jimmy Fallon joins in! Hilarious!!!) Great great stuff!

I Written By

Just a music and dancing fan here ....and a lover of life, nature, animals, and spending as much time as possible camping all over in our travel trailer. Favorite Quote at the moment: "Sing like no one is listening. Love like you've never been hurt. Dance like nobody's watching, and live like it's heaven on earth." ~ William Purkey. Follow me at: Voguerista Twitter & Voguerista Soundcloud. To view my photography site, see Lisa Kay Photography.

Pure World of Dance Season 1, Week 10 (Finale) – Music from Tonight’s Show

Here it is – the music from tonight’s episode, in chronological order. I’ve included a description of when in the episode it played in parentheses. If you’re looking for music from previous episodes, all music lists can be found here.

“Let’s Dance” by David Bowie (opening montage)

“All Night” by The Vamps & Matoma feat. Astrid S (Les Twins first intro)

“Stole The Show” by Kygo feat. Parson James (Les Twins first performance) )

“Give Me Your Love (Extended Mix)” by Sigala feat. John Newman & Nile Rodgers (Les Twins scoring)

“Giants” by Lights (Swing Latino first intro)

“Conga” by Gloria Estefan (Swing Latino first performance)

“It Ain’t Me” by Kygo feat. Selena Gomez (Swing Latino scoring)

“False Alarm” by Matoma feat. Becky Hill (Eva Igo first intro)

“Solo Dance” by Martin Jensen (Eva Igo first intro)

“In The Air Tonight” by Natalie Taylor (Eva Igo first performance)

“The Way I Are (Dance With Somebody)” by Bebe Rexha (Eva Igo scoring)

“Alive” by Sia (Eva Igo second performance)

“Most Girls” by Hailee Steinfeld (Eva Igo second score)

“Magdelena, Mi Amor (Quimbara)” by DLG (Dark Latin Groove) (Swing Latino second performance)

“Good Times” by All Time Low (Swing Latino second score/elimination)

“B.I.G.” by X Ambassadors (Les Twins second intro)

“Scream” by Michael Jackson (Les Twins second performance)

“The Greatest” by Sia (Les Twins second score; winner announced)

August 8, 2017 I Written By

Medical device sales by day, reality TV blogger by night. Makeup artist, baker, hair model, and wannabe DIY-er when time permits, and a potty-mouth 24/7. Read more of me at puredwts.com, and follow me on Twitter & Instagram: @putuincespence

NBC’s World of Dance, Season 1, The FINALE – LIVE Blog

So, who’s going to win ONE MILLION Dollars?? I suspect not who I want to win. Since I haven’t been getting my way all season, why would it start now? ๐Ÿ™‚

Here we go. Kill it, Eva!

Each act will dance twice for a Million dollars. As Derek says – life changing.

Average score from both dances will decide the winner. Meaning they will score normally then average the two scores, I guess.

Les Twins are up first and are talking to Jennifer Lopez – and she tells them no one wants to hear about the ankle. Truth. Read more..

I Written By

I'm a nerd and proud of it. Two degrees in geology also means I love BEER. :-) I'm also a Derek lover - proud of that too. So don't scream at those of us on this site and call us a bunch of "biased Derek-lovers" - it's just ME. :-) It may sound like I hate DWTS at times, but really, I'm just a snarky nitpicker from way back. And I'm cynical and jaded too. But I do love DWTS. :-)

‘World Of Dance’ Season 1 Week 10 ‘The Finals’ – The Performance Videos

We’re posting the performance videos for the World Of Dance Finals courtesy of @Idolxfactor1 and WOD Official You Tube as soon as we can in the space below! Keep checking back for updates….

Read more..

I Written By

Just a music and dancing fan here ....and a lover of life, nature, animals, and spending as much time as possible camping all over in our travel trailer. Favorite Quote at the moment: "Sing like no one is listening. Love like you've never been hurt. Dance like nobody's watching, and live like it's heaven on earth." ~ William Purkey. Follow me at: Voguerista Twitter & Voguerista Soundcloud. To view my photography site, see Lisa Kay Photography.

Derek Hough Previews The Finals Of ‘World Of Dance’ Season 1

Below Derek Hough previews the finals tonight for World Of Dance. To read and see more interviews and view some new photos of Derek In New York City, see Pure Derek Hough.

I Written By

Just a music and dancing fan here ....and a lover of life, nature, animals, and spending as much time as possible camping all over in our travel trailer. Favorite Quote at the moment: "Sing like no one is listening. Love like you've never been hurt. Dance like nobody's watching, and live like it's heaven on earth." ~ William Purkey. Follow me at: Voguerista Twitter & Voguerista Soundcloud. To view my photography site, see Lisa Kay Photography.

PureWofD Poll: Who Is Your favorite To Win ‘World Of Dance’ Season 1? (VOTE)

Who is your favorite to win “World Of Dance” Season 1? VOTE in our new Poll and let us know!!

August 7, 2017 I Written By

Just a music and dancing fan here ....and a lover of life, nature, animals, and spending as much time as possible camping all over in our travel trailer. Favorite Quote at the moment: "Sing like no one is listening. Love like you've never been hurt. Dance like nobody's watching, and live like it's heaven on earth." ~ William Purkey. Follow me at: Voguerista Twitter & Voguerista Soundcloud. To view my photography site, see Lisa Kay Photography.

‘World Of Dance’ Finale Clip – Swing Latino On The Walk Of Fame

How about another teaser for tomorrow night’s finals on World Of Dance? Here’s to Swing Latino!

I Written By

Just a music and dancing fan here ....and a lover of life, nature, animals, and spending as much time as possible camping all over in our travel trailer. Favorite Quote at the moment: "Sing like no one is listening. Love like you've never been hurt. Dance like nobody's watching, and live like it's heaven on earth." ~ William Purkey. Follow me at: Voguerista Twitter & Voguerista Soundcloud. To view my photography site, see Lisa Kay Photography.