“I’m going to be honest,” said Jennifer Lopez after The Young Cast performed during the “World of Dance” Junior Division Duels, “I didn’t know that you two groups had this in you.” Maybe that’s because The Young Cast and their opponents GRVMNT both had to fight hard to prove themselves once before, earning their spots in the Duels only after performing in the second-chance Callbacks round. In this battle of Canadian hip-hop crews, both teams raised the bar, but only one team could win. Watch The Young Cast’s performance above.
Lopez compared The Young Cast’s ferocious routine to “Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon,” and raved, “I’m really impressed right now … because you guys rose to a level that is world class.” Derek Hough thought they “absolutely crushed it,” like they were “shot out of a cannon” from the very beginning of their routine. But he thought their showcase moments and lifts were a little underwhelming relative to the high quality of their synchronicity when they were dancing in formation.
Ne-Yo also thought their tricks were a bit lacking, though guest judge Stephen “Twitch” Boss admired how they brought the fundamentals of hip-hop dancing and added a more modern layer to it. But all three judges agreed that it would be a close call. Granted, they say that in every Duel — you never want to tell a team of wide-eyed kids that they were blown out of the water — but this time I believed them. It’s possible either of these performances would have been a winner against any other act, but the judges could only pick one.
It was a split decision. Hough picked The Young Cast as the winners of the duel, while Lopez picked GRVMNT. So Ne-Yo was the deciding vote, and he gave the nod to GRVMNT, which means they get to advance to the Semi-Finals on the main stage. but I wouldn’t be surprised if we get to see The Young Cast again next week. Their performance was so good that there’s a decent chance Twitch will pick them to perform in the redemption round. It wouldn’t be their first time having to prove themselves again.
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