Oh! Loreena McKennitt. That's who I thought that song sounded like. Did you guess right?
Clarice and Jess. Prepare yourself for a shock: Clarice's parents support her. She's from Whittier and goes to CSU Long Beach. Dance class, parents' sacrifice, etc. It's a little generic, frankly. Jess is from Little Falls, New Jersey. His father used to be an actor, and Jess has been a drama nerd his whole life. They've got Justin Giles for a contemporary dance about the end of a relationship. It appears that it's going to involve a lot of freezes and speeding up and slowing down.
Celeste Lear's "Light Through the Branches." That damn leg extension. A neat leg thing that Jess does. Yep, it's very stop-and-starty. I like Justin's style, and I look forward to seeing more of it. It ends with Clarice facing the camera (and away from the audience) in close-up as Jess walks off the stage and down the aisle in the background. It's a nice shot, but it's a little weird to have it so clearly framed for the television audience, not the people in the theater. I loved it.
Travis says it's his favorite Jess-and-Clarice routine and takes a moment to praise Justin's musicality. He believed the sexual chemistry and can't want to work with them. He takes a moment to give Clarice tips on pushing down with her "supporting leg" so she can do whatever she wants with her "working leg." Nigel is delighted to have a chance to praise Justin for this and the men's group routine (that he's not supposed to comment on). He liked the staccato nature of the routine. I wish I'd thought of the word "staccato" in the last paragraph when I invented the phrase "stop-and-starty." But it's too late now, because I'm going to stick with it. Carmen says she believed the characters, which doesn't mean anything. Mary likes the partnership and says that Jess and Clarice are going in the right direction. Clarice seems touched by the specificity of Mary's praise, which is a good reason she should keep talking like a dance expert and not shrieking like a locomotive-obsessed banshee.
Ashley and Chris. Ashley is from Antioch and her father is a deacon. She likes to cook. Chris is from Dallas and has six siblings. He's severely dyslexic and had trouble with school as a result. But now he's in college, so there! And they have a Liz Lira salsa. It's going to be fast, full of tricks, and hopefully fairly sexy. Chris says he doesn't like moving his hips around, which seems like the sort of thing a dancer is going to have to do occasionally. He characterizes the lifts as throwing Ashley around like a bag of potatoes. Sexy, right?