"Revolution": Dancing Against All Odds

The two-year pandemic has taken a toll on dancers, and perhaps even more so on ballroom couples who can’t train and rehearse together. Living in Montreal and New York, Jesse and Jason managed to overcome this ordeal.

Jessie and Jason have been dancing regularly for the past two years, after all, if they’ve tried to do a joint workout via Zoom. “It’s complicated because my partner is a father of two, and we’re not in the same bubble,” Jesse explained in an interview. “There was also the issue of the mandatory two-week quarantine. We hadn’t seen each other in two years.”

An unbreakable bond

Jason couldn’t understand why the studios were still open in America when everything was closed on this side of the border. “We really like each other, we get along really well and we thought we wanted to finish our lives together,” the 33-year-old dancer said. With only a few years left to perform, we thought we’d conduct. The minute the borders reopened, Jason drove the 16-hour round trip with his partner for two hours of practice.

Photo courtesy / OSA Images / VAT

From their first meeting, Jessie and Jason had a friendly and professional attraction. “We are two enthusiasts on the same level and this is the first time we get along well with our partner. Training is much longer than performance and you have to be on the same wavelength to spend more time together.

A perfect investment

If they waited to audition for the show’s fourth season, it was also for administrative reasons.

“I thought we couldn’t be on the show because Jason needed a work visa. This year is the first year the production can bring us in. The couple is considered professional in the middle of the ballroom, but it’s never paid for in international competitions. They just get stipends that they have to declare to customs.

For “Revolution,” they decided to break out of the confines of the ballroom to woo their masters and the public. “On the show, you get to do amazing things that you wouldn’t normally do. So we went to get help. We took trash classes in Toronto with a professional and also took acting classes to show expressions.

Photo courtesy / OSA Images / VAT

The investment paid off as masters appreciated their routine and appreciated their technique and creativity.

For the future, the couple is looking big. “We want to make it to the finals. We know there is a lot of talent, everyone is good, and we want to win. Plus, no ballroom couple has ever won, which will be the first time in the history of “Revolution.”

Étienne Delorme, 25, Montreal

Having danced with Les Grands Ballets Canadiens for four years, Etienne is passionate about choreography. “I think I have a creative instinct more than a dancer’s instinct. I feel comfortable creating and that’s what excites me the most and I want to transition into the world of dance.” Her first ballet lesson, at age 10, left her with a bitter taste, but when she decided to dedicate her life to dance, she had no choice. “I knew it was important to take ballet lessons for technique and purity of movements. So I joined a school that had ballet lessons with great technique. My strengths are contemporary, but funnily enough, today I have a big background in classical ballet, even though I hated it when I was younger. Through his participation, Etienne wants to encourage young people to be more creative: “I want to allow myself to work in commercial dance, films, music videos, etc. and see what I can bring to this environment.”

Photo courtesy / OSA Images / VAT

Mélisande Lalonde, 17, Gatineau

Melisande was strongly advised to take part in the show by a friend of Justin Verro, a former candidate for Season 3. “I was told it was a good experience.” The young woman, who is very uncomfortable on a daily basis, believes that dance allows her to express herself more easily. “I’m a very shy girl at social events, but when I dance I’m a completely different person. Dancing gives me more confidence. I don’t know how to explain it. When I’m on stage, I know I’m on my own because I know what I want to do with my life. I know.” Masters were also impressed by his ingenuity, his originality and ability to take risks.

Photo courtesy / OSA Images / VAT

Gabriel Bouchard, 18, Chambly

A student at the École de Danse contemporaine de Montréal, Gabrielle enjoyed participating in the “revolution” with her two friends, Clodie and Angélyk. “We are always together at school, we prepare together. It was comforting.” The young woman wanted to reveal her dysmorphic disorder in her number. “At the time of the audition, it was a problem in my life and I was going through very difficult phases. In front of the mirror at dance school, I compared myself so much that it was hard to see myself. It affected my confidence a lot, but in this case dancing allowed me to feel less of it and show it off, which did me good. Today, she is much better, but if she still experiences small difficult passes. “Dancing this choreography helped me become more aware of my problem. By doing that, I felt better and completely relaxed. The masters were also touched by his truth and sensitivity.

Photo courtesy / OSA Images / VAT

Candidates selected this week:

Lil V, 13 to 15 years old, Trois-Rivieres (Hip-Hop)

Jessie and Jason, 33 and 30, Laval and New York (Ballroom)

Étienne Delorme, 25, Montreal (link)

Angélyk Delisle-Hevey, 18, Montreal (contemporary)

Miranda and Palomek, 27 and 25, Montreal (link)

Mélisande Lalonde, 17, Gatineau (contemporary)

Gabriel Bouchard, 18, Chambly (contemporary)

Waived Candidates:

Catherine Ng, 31, Ottawa (Contemporary)

Project K, 15 to 17 years old, Montreal’s South Shore (Contemporary)

Eclectic, 16 to 22 years old, Quebec (link)

Intrigued, 31, Montreal (breakdance)

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