“World of Dance” judge Derek Hough and his sister Julianne Hough have toured with contestants Ashley and Zack, but even they were worried that the duo might get lost in the shuffle. The Cut is no time to fly under the radar, not when the seven competitors in the Upper Division were competing for just three slots in the Division Final. Luckily for them their performance to Coldplay‘s “Fix You,” inspired by the death of one of Zack’s close friends, was the “massive breakthrough” performance they needed exactly when they needed it. Watch it above, and read the judges’ comments below.
Derek Hough: “Zack and Ashley, that was absolutely stunning. In the past dances, Ashley, you are the focal point, and Zack was a great partner. But I think with this performance, Zack, you really came forward and you really showed your heart out there. You really told us a beautiful story. Such unique and different types of transitions and lifts just flowed from one to the other, and I feel like you guys had a massive breakthrough in this competition with that performance, so thank you very much. Well done, you two.”
Ne-Yo: “This is a prime example of what real emotion looks like. This is what it looks like. I was moved, and if that was your mission, well mission accomplished. Great job.”
Jennifer Lopez: “This was a really nice piece. I felt the difficulty and the struggle trying to help her. You had to muscle her around at the end and there was something about that that I really loved because it’s hard, and it’s not smooth, and it’s not easy when you have situations like that. And that to me was kind of like how art imitates life. It’s not perfect, and in that sense it was perfect.”
Ashley and Zack scored 90 from Ne-Yo, 91 from Lopez and 93 from Hough for an average of 91.3. They ended up finishing third in the division, just one-third of a point ahead of krumpers BDash and Konkrete. That was the difference between making the cut and getting cut. Did you agree with the judges’ comments and scores? Vote in our poll below to let us know who you think should win the Upper Division.