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Wednesday, June 20, 2012

The New American Dream


The American dream is the idea that suggests that all people can succeed through hard work and all people have the potential to live happy, successful lives.  It seems the American dream now is defined by winning one of the sensational reality competition shows. For some, this can be considered a lousy short-cut while to others, a well-deserved opportunity coming out of diligent hard work.

Last night I was watching America's Got Talent and there was an all male group called 787 from Puerto Rico who got were sucked into the dream and paid their own fare to audition.  Dressed in black and florescent green outfits, their hairstyles closely resembled dance crew Quest and it was obvious they were both overwhelmed and frightened to be in the competition.

The judges loved their performance and Howard Stern claimed they are "one of the best dance acts we've seen on this stage".  Really?! I'm not an avid watcher of the show so I don't know who exactly he is comparing them to but they definitely didn't blow my mind.

To me, they were just okay.  Too many stunts and not enough actual dance.  If they are going to be called a 'dance crew', they need to actually DANCE and have more choreography.  The dance choreography they did execute was limited, not synchronized and  unexciting to me. It all felt very robotic and instead of letting the music guide them, it seemed their goal was to deliver the most flashiest and eye-catching stunts as in cheerleading (and trust me, cheerleaders and dancers are like comparing cantaloupe and broccoli)

But really who can blame them?  A majority of the dance crews featured on reality television shows these days deliver this same formula and they are simply offering a replication of what they know with their Puerto Rican stamp.  Good on them for coming out to audition and represent because they have just put Puerto Rico in the running and who knows, maybe they will get their American dream in the end.  But as far as representing true dance culture, unfortunately they don't get my vote.

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