Episode Aired: Wednesday / 05/15/2013
Joining Nigel and Mary tonight for the first time at the judges’ table is the wildly popular Season 4 all-star Stephen “tWitch” Boss. First up on the audition roster we see the very talented freestyler Jade Zuberi, who dances to the unorthodox choice of “Steam Forest” by Andreas Vollenweider. Nigel is engrossed by the performance and doesn’t want it to end, but when it does, the judges rise to give Zuberi a standing ovation. With tWitch calling it one of the best auditions he’s seen and a great to start the show, Jade makes Detroit proud and earns a ticket to Las Vegas for the competition.
Dance hopeful Amy Yakima is up next, and she lets us know about her father, whom she had convinced to take “Dad Jazz” classes. Nigel eggs Dan Yakima into coming to the stage, and before Amy can audition, she has to join the judges in critiquing her dad. The Northville, Michigan, native performs a contemporary piece to Lara Fabian’s haunting “Je Suis Malade,” and her stunning interpretation brings the house down. In light of her father’s performance, Nigel says he’s relieved she is so good and he can’t find fault with her, while Mary raves that she was spectacular and tWitch says that her movement spoke volumes. Not surprisingly, Amy is invited her to come to Vegas to compete.
Dedicating his performance to his recently departed grandmother, Morgan “Mo” Williams is up next, dancing to “Goodbye My Lover” from James Blunt. Nigel wants to see Mo dance in the choreography round to determine his eligibility to compete, but Mary puts him in his place and sends Morgan straight to Vegas instead.
Did you know that Detroit has its own dance style? Host Cat Deeley spends some time learning about the Jit as dance hopeful Will “Sysko” Green shows the crowd and the judges his Jitting skills onstage. Sysko explains to the judges that he also knows how to do the Detroit Hip Roll, and he even performs a special Hip Roll for Mary. Mary jokes that she needs a medic as Nigel and Twitch fan her down, with Nigel joking that he’d brought blood to parts of her body that haven’t seen blood in years. Will earns a unanimous pass to the choreography round and praise from Nigel as a wonderful representative for Detroit dance.
The first day of auditions at the Fillmore Detroit draws to a close with Nigel telling the hopefuls that dancers never stop learning. To illustrate his point, tWitch takes to the stage and shows off his Detroit Hip Roll as well as the other reasons he has become such an integral part of the fabric of the show.
We then go from an all-star to a who-knows-what as Garrett Frye does his best to earn a spot in the competition with his questionable brand of hip-hop dance. While it’s obvious Frye doesn’t have the skills, he does entertain the crowd, and tWitch quips that he learned a few things from watching Frye dance. Nigel tells Frye he should continue to enjoy dancing all his life — just not on the show — and Mary and Twitch agree.
Detroit’s first choreography round takes place next. Marko and Sasha coach the dancers through the steps for an hour before they perform for the judges, but Nigel has to stop Sysko in the middle of his routine to explain to him that he cannot Freestyle during choreography, as he might hurt his partner. Sysko is sent home for his mistake, but eight more dancers are elevated to the next round.
Day two in Detroit kicks off with tapper Tyrone Cobham, who says he just wants to make his grandma proud and keep tapping for the rest of his life. The melody of Art Tatum’s “How High the Moon” is drowned out by the sounds what Nigel calls one of the best tappers they’ve had on the program. Mary agrees and calls it the best audition she’s seen, while tWitch says he wishes he could be that smooth. There’s nothing left for Nigel to do except wave the golden ticket at Tyrone.
Next we are treated to a bevy of dancing beauties who all have dreams of stardom. One had her brother paint her stomach in support, while another tells the judges her grandma does “Gangnam Style” — which of course means the judges have to dance with her as well.
Cat appears at one of Detroit’s car factories as she introduces the exotic dancing group Fame, whose members are competing for a chance at Vegas. Members Darryl Harrell (aka “Smilez”) and “Prince Charming” DeFonte Thomas are selected to stay for the choreography round, while their three partners are thanked for their efforts and sent home. Smilez and Prince Charming join another 20 dancers for day two of the choreography elimination, but Smilez is ultimately sent home. Nigel thanks Prince Charming for coming and gives him as well as six other dancers their golden tickets to Vegas.
Next week promises to hold more excitement, as actress Minnie Driver joins the judges for auditions in Austin, and we see the second round from Los Angeles.
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