Sunday, May 30, 2010
International battle on Dynamite stage
Just hours before the Red Label Wine Dancin' Dynamites International Battle of the Five was scheduled to take place, a national state of emergency was declared for the parishes of Kingston and St Andrew; but nonetheless the show went under way, with a few minor changes.
The venue was changed from Mas Camp to the studios of Television Jamaica on Lyndhurst Road where the show was pre-recorded on the night of May 23, as opposed to being presented as a live broadcast.
The competition featured two rounds - dancehall and hip hop, as dancers representing five countries competed for the coveted prize of US$5,000 (J$450,000).
Adrenaline Duo of Barbados stepped out for war and they were met with shouts from fans as they moved to Shaggy's Bombastic. The performance earned them 70 points out of 100 from season judge Kerry Ann Henry and 65 from American guest judge Tamara 'TT' Thomas.
In the hip-hop round, clad in a red, white and black ensemble with matching baseball caps, the duo returned to the stage, dancing to Justin Bieber and Ludacris' Baby, but they needed to "punch, punch, punch" more, according to Henry who gave them 80, while judge TT gave them 70.
America's best dance group, X-Factor, came out in full black but their routine failed to pop as judge TT highlighted that they were not in sync, giving them 55 and Henry 50.
"When you come out looking like that you need to pop," said Henry.
For round two, the duo's outfit was the most impressive for the night and was topped off with masks resembling the painted faces of mimes. The execution of their choreography to the instrumental for Chris Brown's I Can Transform Ya was lacking, but judge TT awarded them 80 points for their creativity and theatrics while Henry gave them 70.
UCCI Fresh Boys from the Cayman Islands came up with one dancer dressed as an old lady being serenaded by the other that gave the audience much to laugh about.
Then it was on to some hardcore dancing as they moved to RDX's Everybody Dance. It was 50 points from Henry and 60 from TT who said "spacing was an issue as you were too far apart".
For their hip-hop effort, 65 points came from TT who thought that the routine lacked the hip-hop element, but Henry dropped 90 points for the good storyline, use of music and comedy within their routine. The audience burst into laughter as one of the dancer's pants ripped as he completed a split.
When Card Unit came onstage, it was mayhem as screams erupted from the audience.
Their performance was a concise version of some of their best dance moves throughout the season and their inclusion of a skipping-rope routine that garnered them a perfect score a few weeks ago and the audience exploded!
Judge TT gave the duo an 85 saying they "did really, really good, I like the way the tricks came in and out". With a 90, Henry declared, "That's why you are the winners!"
For the second round, Card Unit resembled vampires, draped in red and black outfits with half of their faces painted and wore plastic canine teeth. Their routine was done to Missy Elliot's Get Your Freak On. Infused with drama that was in sync with the choreography, the audience were duly entertained as they jumped from their seats in support and appreciation.
"Love di costume, love di use of space and love the choreography," was all Henry said as she released a perfect score.
"I give thanks for good entertainment. From beginning to end you had me!" exclaimed an ecstatic TT, with a 95.
Black Diamond, a comical Japanese and Italian duo, gave a performance that made it very difficult to persons to keep a straight face as they attempted to execute some of the more modern dancehall moves, failing in most of their attempts.
The audience laughed intensely as they danced. However, the performance did not lack energy and entertainment.
"Your coordination was not so good," TT said as she gave them 40 points. Henry followed suit with 40 points, informing the group that their timing was off.
Their hip-hop stint scored them much less, with 35 points and an 'A' for effort from TT and 30 from Henry.
At the end of the night, the season's top-five dancers performed excluding fourth-place winners Xcalade Dancers.
Henry later handed out certificates and Red Label Wine gift bags to the International groups, all of whom await the votes of the viewers, via text messages and through the Dancin' Dynamites website, to see who will walk away with top honours.
We will still have a live show to announce the winners of the International Battle of the Five, so we have not at all taken away the voters' opportunity to see the performance of their favourite artiste at Mas Camp. The live broadcast will also be Skyped as some of the dancers will be unable to make it, so viewers should keep it locked to TVJ to see when it's going to go down," said host Jenny Jenny.