There were dancers, there were show clips and then there was Jennifer Lopez in an amazing leopard print dress at NBCUniversal’s pre-Emmy event for its “World of Dance” television show.
The evening was literally kicked off by the talented Lab Creative Arts Studio dancers, followed by a talk with Lopez (judge and executive producer), Derek Hough (judge), Jenna Dewan (host/mentor), NE-YO (judge) and three other producers — Kris Curry, Elaine Goldsmith-Thomas and Matilda Zoltowski. The evening was also hosted by Scott Evans from “Access Hollywood.”
When asked by Evans how the show came to be, Curry said it was the “genius” of Meredith (Ahr) and Paul (Telegdy) – there was another dance show in the pipeline originally.
Lopez related that she knew immediately there was something about the concept. However, she was just going to be another producer when Telegdy told her, “You should be a part of this.”
“I loved doing this, I wanted it to be a success so I swung for the fences, so to speak,” said Lopez.
Goldsmith-Thomas explained that, “Matilda and I expanded the boundaries, so every country could send their dancers to us.”
In agreement about the quality of the dancers on the show, Lopez added, “Dancers (in general) are the most dedicated athletes you will ever meet –they come in first, go home last and are in the background and underpaid. My favorite part is, even now, going into a dance rehearsal. I’ve been dancing since I was five.”
Dewan got a last minute call. “I knew I wanted to be a part of it and that the show would be a game changer, I loved it.”
It seemed that Hough had a few doubts at first. “When we first heard about the format, I thought how are we going to judge a solo act alongside a group? Then this little girl (Eva Igo) blew us away – good is good, that’s what shines through.”
Scott asked NE-YO if he was surprised about the show.
“I’ve seen so many things happen on stage that I didn’t think was physically possible, like I didn’t know bones could bend that way,” he laughed.
Lopez added, “The things they can do is way beyond what I could do at that age. It’s about wanting something and going for it. It’s riveting to watch. I also know that each one of those kids would do it (dance) for free.”
Curry chipped in, “The pedigree of the talent was so amazing, also the degree of our judges.”
“It’s not just the athleticism but also the choreography of the pieces are so beautiful and so relevant, the best I’ve ever seen. And I have been dancing since I was 12,” added Hough.
Dewan agreed. “There is something special and our hearts are on stage with them. It happens with every single taping.”
Evans asked what Lopez liked about producing.
“I choose things I love to do — I take on a lot because I love it. I am passionate about the show and seeing what could move the viewers in their journeys and their dreams,” said Lopez.
Evans also mentioned that “World of Dance” was the #1 hit over the summer.
Smiling, Lopez said, “It’s an organic process, sticking to the details, having great partners and knowing we have something special. I’m just happy to be here for Season 2.”
A clip of Season 2 was then shown and NE-YO said, “I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again — we have the sexiest judges on television!”