"World of Dance" Week 3 Recap: The Necessary Qualifications
Derek Piquette, breaking our hearts in the best way possible (Trae Patton/NBC)
Alright, y'all, this is it. THE LAST WEEK OF QUALIFIERS. In our humble opinions, every single act that walks onto the "World of Dance" stage is supremely overqualified to win all of the prize money, but this is a TV dance competition, so cuts will be made. Tears will be shed and wiped away gently, so as not to disturb eye makeup. J.Lo will wear another blindingly sparkly outfit, while dishing out the most quotable feedback this side of The Hot Tamale Train. But enough about all that—let's get to last night's unsurprisingly glorious dancing, shall we?!
Denise & Josh (91.0)
As the judges could not stop gushing, this routine was a textbook example of the magic that can happen when you add juuuuuuust the right amount of negative space into choreography. These two moved perfectly in sync, showing off clean contemporary lines and a crazy-strong emotional connection. We couldn't look away, and neither could the judges—which enthusiastically sent this Toronto duo on to the Duels.
Derek Piquette (91.3)
Watching Derek Piquette's no-holds-barred performance from last night, it's super hard to believe that "WOD" marks Piquette's last dance comp before he undergoes a double hip replacement. 😢 His every move is just that effortless. The panel agreed, praising Piquette's undeniable facility and challenging him to bring his creativity up to that particularly high bar. For our part, we cannot wait to see more of Piquette's boundless extensions and v. springy leaps in the Duels round.
DD Flection (92.0)
These two gave us so many "OMGGGGGGG" moments that it feels impossible to pick just one to shout out. The fish dive like no fish dive you've ever seen before? The jump backwards off of her partner's shoulders, straight into a somersault? Or the moment when they casually announced they're the reigning champs of the Thai version of "World of Dance"? No pressure whatsoever, other contestants. DD Flection just has the whole package and OH YEAH, they already won the show, in a sense. Nbd.
Unity LA (95.3)
The night's top scorer was a classic "World of Dance" top contender: a contemporary/hip-hop team that ruled their routine with insane precision, technically intricate Tessandra Chavez choreo, and full-on stage presence. Derek Hough declared immediately afterwards that "I have goosies on my thighs," and SAME. We can't wait to see this powerhouse team—along with all the other Qualified acts—bring things up to the next level with the Duels, starting next week!
School of American Ballet students (Rosalie O'Connor, courtesy SAB)
Do you have a "Strictly Ballet"–sized hole in your heart? Good news: The upcoming docuseries "On Pointe" just might fill it.
The School of American Ballet is teaming up with Imagine Documentaries and DCTV for the project. Though it's not yet clear where "On Pointe" will air, we do know that it'll follow talented SAB students preparing for professional ballet careers—much as Teen Vogue's popular "Strictly Ballet" web series did back in the day. But "On Pointe" marks the first time documentary filmmakers have been allowed access to the school, and it sounds like it'll paint an even more complete picture of the dancers' lives inside and outside the studio.
Choreographer Bob Fosse's signature style—with its jazz hands, inverted knees, and slouched shoulders—is still a huge influence in the dance world (and, thanks to the gloriously dancyFX series "Fosse/Verdon," the TV world). But while you know to expect plenty of Fosse-isms during a stage performance of Chicago or Sweet Charity, Fosse's legacy has also seeped into pop music culture, inspiring the likes of Beyoncé and Lady Gaga. Here are just six of the many music videos that reference Fosse's iconic works.
Gabrielle Hamilton in John Heginbotham's dream ballet from Oklahoma! Photo by Little Fang Photo, courtesy DKC/O&M
Last night, longtime theater legends (including Chita Rivera herself!) as well as rising stars gathered to celebrate one of Broadway's danciest events: the third annual Chita Rivera Awards.
The evening paid tribute to this season's dancer standouts, extraordinary ensembles, and jaw-dropping choreography—on- and off-Broadway and on film.
As usual, several Dance Spirit faves made it into the mix. (With such a fabulous talent pool of nominees to choose from, we're glad that ties were allowed.) Here are the highlights from the winner's list: