Jess and Jordan talk about their 'SYTYCD' elimination and being judged by Lady Gaga
Jess LeProtto and Jordan Casanova were the next pair to be eliminated from “So You Think You Can Dance” during the Top 8 Results Show.
LeProtto, an 18-year-old Broadway dancer from Little Falls, N.J., and Casanova, an 18-year-old jazz dancer from Chino Hills, Calif., spoke to the media during a recent conference call about their eliminations, their future plans and what it was like having Lady Gaga as a guest judge. Excerpts are below.
On whether they showed enough variety in their performances:
Jordan Casanova: I’m pretty happy with how I performed. I agree I didn’t switch it up a little bit and that’s why I went on to the contemporary solo … I just had a lot of fun and I left my heart out on stage … When it comes down to it, you have to just take the best moves and the best things in your solo and you only have 30 seconds. So I think I did actually well.
On whether their dance genres may have worked against them:
Jess LeProtto: I don’t think so because for any type of special genre like dancers have, like for me Broadway, or for hip hop dancers or especially sometimes tappers or any type of special genres that are featured on the show … I think we (get) the kind of same respect because we are different. We’re not currently on the show every season and then we come up and then people are so happy. I think people are so happy to see our genres pop up.
So I never feel against it. It’s just like I feel like I’m a part of it now because I fill the slot back up for a Broadway dancer. That’s what I wanted to do.
On their future plans:
Jordan Casanova: (I’ve) been dying to get into film and singing and so I would like to take on that challenge and see how far I can get. I’ve always been interested in it, but dance has always been my first love. I think I’m just really excited for any opportunities that open.
Jess LeProtto: For me I think after the tour, (it) will bring me back to New York and starting to get back into the whole audition process … and then maybe explore other things, including movies and TV, as well as branching out not as a dancer in front of an audience, but hopefully something behind the scenes as more of a choreographer and learning more things, so I can expand my knowledge. Because honestly you never know where life is going to take you, but I always feel like you should be prepared for anything, so I look forward to it. I look forward to the future.
On what they learned from being on the show:
Jordan Casanova: For me I just learned that it was actually possible for me even to be here. I lacked a little faith in myself because in this industry, it’s really hard to book jobs, and you have to have a look and people say no to you. It’s really hard coming from just graduating to the industry and so I had no faith in myself, in my dance career, and I auditioned for the show.
I think it taught me that you can do something. You can accomplish a goal with hard work and dedication. Being here, I also learned so many different styles. I got a chance to do two waltzes and a rumba and I’ve never done ballroom in my life. So with that, I learned other varieties of dance, and I’m so excited to do that because that expands your knowledge. I think I surprised myself in a lot of ways.
Jess LeProtto: I think what the show has taught me (is) that you don’t have to present yourself as different to attract an audience … And also with this experience, what this taught me is that I can be so many things that I never thought I could, as well as certain genres. You never know what you can be good at, so it was a fun experience to really see what I’m also capable of doing besides just my regular specialty genre.
On how judge Nigel Lythgoe said he was going with America’s vote and whether the dancers knew if they had received the lowest number of votes:
Jordan Casanova: Actually we don’t know who’s in the bottom at all. Everything that you see is exactly how it happened. I absolutely had no idea that you never know what’s going to happen on the show. It’s full of surprises and that’s what makes it such a great show. So no one had any idea who was on the bottom and I don’t know. I don’t know if that’s necessarily what he was implying, but if it was, then so be it. I’m just happy to have gotten this far.
On whether they were surprised they were sent home:
Jess LeProtto: Well, for first hand, you can never say that you’re immune from the competition for sure. Everybody is on pins and needles because they don’t know. You never know what the public is going to do. You may think that you danced brilliantly on Wednesday night and people are probably thinking he’s got it, he’s safe. It’s okay, don’t worry about it. But sometimes it doesn’t work on Thursday night …, so you’re never sure, but you always have to be prepared for it.
I was actually on the bottom the very first week and you never expect it. But I was saying to myself I have to be prepared for anything that happens, worst case scenario and just get it out of my head very quickly, so I can get into my solo mode and just really give an audience a good performance for 30 seconds.
On what it was like to have Lady Gaga as a judge:
Jordan Casanova: I never would have thought in my whole life that Lady Gaga would sit in front of me and tell me things about the way I dance, so for me, I couldn’t believe my eyes. I was so excited and so thrilled … because she comes from such an interesting background and she’s so interesting. She dresses interesting. She talks interesting. Everything about her is again so interesting, so I was so intrigued by what she was going to say. And once she started giving her comments, I like probably peed in my pants, but you just couldn’t tell on stage. She’s amazing and I was so happy to have her there.
Jess LeProtto: … I was really excited. And for a public who knows her so well, you never know. You can never know what she’s going to dress like. And when she made that entrance on Wednesday night in that flamboyant outfit that everyone is so used to seeing her dressed just like that, it was crazy. It was absolutely nuts.
I think her presence on the show is very professional. She is coming from a background from humble beginnings to where she is now, she’s a humongous super star, so she knows so much about this business. She knows so much about performing that her critiques and comments were so useful and helpful to us throughout the night. So I was really fortunate to be in the same room as Lady Gaga.
Watch the Top 6 “So You Think You Can Dance” dancers perform Wednesday at 8/7 C and find out which two dancers will be the next to be sent home during the results show Thursday at 8/7 C. Full episodes are also available online at CTV.ca.