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Interview with Melanie Moore of "So You Think You Can Dance" on
FBC PUBLICITY: So You Think You Can Dance
August 12, 2011/10:00 a.m. PDT
Moderator Welcome to the So You Think You Can Dance Conference call. At
this time, all telephone participants are in a listen-only mode. Later,
there will be an opportunity for your questions. As a reminder, the
conference is being recorded.
Iíll now turn the conference over to our host Ms. Kalyn Seymour.
K. Seymour Thank you, everyone, for joining our So You Think You Can
Dance Conference call. Today, you will be speaking with the season eight
champion Melanie Moore, 19 years old, contemporary dancer from Marietta,
Georgia. Please limit your questions to one question per outlet, and we
will begin our call.
Moderator We go to Mike Hughes with TV America.
M. Hughes Hey, Melanie, youíve always made the point that youíre a lot
more outgoing than the shy kid that we saw on TV, and I thought one of
the interesting things I read was that you were actually homecoming
queen in high school, so tell us a little bit about that. Were you
homecoming queen, and if we knew you would you really be kind of a much
more outgoing kind of a social person?
M. Moore Yes, I was homecoming queen in high school, which was really
exciting for me. I donít know I feel like on TV Iím definitely that
bubbly person that you guys see but I am a lot more talkative and
chatty. I feel like throughout the competition Iíve just been so focused
that you havenít completely gotten to see how outgoing I am but as the
competition progressed I definitely think that people got to know me
Moderator Our next question is from the line of Rodney Ho with the
R. Ho I was at Lassiter High School last night with 1,500 of your
closest friends. I got to meet some of your teachers over the years;
Amanda and Miss Paula came up to me, she was so proud and Katie was
crying. Katie Ö.
M. Moore So was I, itís okay.
R. Ho Well, I was wondering after all the press is done I here youíre
going to get a little bit of time off. What do you plan to do when you
come back down to Marietta?
M. Moore I have ten days off and I was planning on definitely being at
my studio and taking classes because thatís one thing about me I can
never sit still for that long, ever. Yes, so Iíll probably sleep for
about a day then Iíll be ready to go again, and I donít knowómy
boyfriend, Mitchell, is moving back up to Athens to go back to the
University of Georgia. Heís been out here this whole time so I was
definitely going to go out there and help him get all of his stuff
together because heís been out here and not prepared to go back to
school. I was going to make stuff about him instead of me for a little
R. Ho Iím sure that will be a nice change for you because it has been
all about you a while.
M. Moore Yes, Iím ready to step out of the spotlight for just a couple
of minutes at least.
Moderator And a question from the line of Lindsey Dreyer with Wetpaint.
L. Dreyer So you got some pretty interesting offers while you were on
the show. Lady Gaga said she would love to have you on tour. Kenny
Ortega said that you would make a great addition to Dirty Dancing while
Nigel said that you could probably join any company that you wanted,
which three of those options appeal to you most, joining a company,
going on tour or maybe getting into movies?
M. Moore I donít know. I feel like my dream has always been to be in a
company, and I feel like as far as my movement I would be more suited
for a company atmosphere, and alsoóI donít even know though because I
would love to do tour work. Iíve always said that I want to do dancing
and I didnít care what I was doing, whether I was in the back of a
commercial or whether I was dancing, I didnít really care. I want to be
able to sustain a living dancing and thatís really what Iím hoping to
do, so I donít know. If any of those offers come through I will let you
Moderator We go next to Jennifer Still with Digital Spy.
J. Still It was really great watching you on the show and you got so
many compliments from the guest judges and the regular panel sort of
every week. And everyone just loved the emotion that you put into your
dancing and stuff like that, and you were sort of in a way kind of being
told from the beginning that you could win this thing. Was that
something that was in your head? Did you go into the finale last night
knowing that everyone really believed in you and that you had a real
chance? Were you unsure? Did you think it could go any way? What were
your feelings going into it?
M. Moore Well, going into the finale I definitely thought I had a chance
but sitting there on stage next to Sasha, Marko and Tadd really I
couldnít pick a favorite because all of us are so great at the things
that we do and I donít know how America picked. I was this is going to
be such a hard decision. And I definitely felt confident with what I did
on Thursday and what I had done in the course of the competition because
I just tried to do what I could every week and really focus on the
dances that were given to me and not look backwardónot look forward but
really focus on what was going on and keep my head in the game sort of.
I mean I donít know. I didnít want to put any extra pressure on myself
by thinking that I was like a favorite or I really had this amazing shot
at it but I always kept in my head that there was definitely a shot and
it was worth going for.
Moderator Weíll go to JD Montgomery with YacketyYack.com.
J. Montgomery We actually have a question from one of your fans on our
Website. And she was wonderingóIím sure you were expecting a question
about this, the big leapóworking with somebody in such a sort time span
how do you gain so much trust in somebody like that to make a leap into
somebodies arms not expecting to fall?
M. Moore I donít know. Neil and I sort of just clicked from the very
beginning. Heís so funny and he made me feel so comfortable, so when
Mandy told me that I was going to be sprinting across the stage jumping
into his arms I wasnít too nervous because Neilís got a lot of muscle. I
knew he could handle it but we started out just a couple of steps away
and within three tries I was across the room just because we were both
like okay, that was fine, letís keep going. Letís keep moving back.
Letís keep moving back, so we both were sort of daredevils about it but
I feel like whoever Iím partnering with I usually have complete trust in
them because I want them to have total trust in me because what you give
is sort of what you receive in that relationship. I donít know. We were
sort of fearless together in that respect.
Moderator Weíll go to Jackie Strause with Life & Style.
J. Strause You touched on this a little bit before but would Lady Gaga
be someone you would go on tour with and what other offers have come in,
if any, so far?
M. Moore Well, I would definitely be interested in going on tour with
Lady Gaga. I think sheís an amazing artist and Iíve seen a lot of her
stuff. I never got to go to her tour but my best friend is literally
obsessed with her. She loves her so much, so Iíve seen it and Iíve seen
the ACO Specials and just everything she does is so amazing so I would
be more than happy and overjoyed to work with her. As far as offers, I
havenít really been scouted for anything like that besides what Kenny
Ortega said about Dirty Dancing. I donít know. Iím just really excited
about the tour. Thatís what Iím looking forward to right now and trying
to keep my head in that and trying to remember all those routines that
theyíre going to make us do. Itís kind of like a throwback to the
Moderator Weíll go next to Debra Seirle with Dance Informa.
D. Seirle My question was what do you attribute your success to? Is it
your hard work or the support of you mom or your great dance teachers?
Why do you think you did so well?
M. Moore Thatís a great question. I donít know. I feel like the reason
why I did so well was probablyóit would probably be because first off my
partnership. I had an absolutely amazing partner from the beginning.
Marko was so strong and I feel like we really carried each other. We
feed off of each other from the very beginning. I donít know. Marko and
I put so much hard work in, in the beginning, and it wasóI donít mean to
say that it was more than everybody else because I know that everyone
was working really hard but we were the only couple who rented studio
space outside of the rehearsal time that we Ö. And so we would be in
rehearsals all day and then we would go to rehearse at night.
Marko half the time wanted to kill me because I was so nitpicky and heís
one of those people whoís like okay; no it will come together when we
get on stage. I know how you perform and I was no, it needs to come
together before we get onstage because I know how we perform and it will
be even better. I need to have things in line before we go onstage
because then when you go onstage you donít need to be thinking about
stuff that youíre worried about coming together. You can really just
live in that moment. In that way Marko wanted to kick me half the time
but our partnership really worked out well, and I can definitely
attribute my success both to him and our work ethics because without
those I donít think we would have made it as far at all in the
Moderator We go to Beth Kwiatkowski with Reality TV World.
B. Kwiatkowski You said in the interview with People that you thought
Sasha was going to win once it just got down to the two of you. Why was
that? Why were you so convinced that you were going to take the runner
M. Moore I donít know. I really did think Sasha was going to win. First
off, sheís an absolutely amazing dancer and literally Iím so inspired by
her but secondly, theyíve been calling me a favorite since the beginning
and usually the person whoís the favorite or the front runner doesnít
win because for some reason or another it usually doesnít happen in that
favor, so I really didnít expect it at all. Sasha really has improved so
much over so many strides and sheís really grown on people. We werenít
that good of friends in the beginning either and as she opened up in the
competition it was really when she was opening up to us. And I have
nothing but absolute love and so much respect for her, and honestly I
was so ready to be second place and really just tell her how much of an
amazing job she did because any of the four of us that were on that
stage, I feel like, could have taken it.
Moderator Weíll go to Sheri Block with CTV.com.
S. Block I wanted to follow up on the question about Dirty Dancing. Now,
you werenít even born when the first movie came out. Have you seen it,
first of all, and what do you think it would be like to be part of the
M. Moore Of course Iíve seen Dirty Dancing. Itís one of my momís
favorite movies but I donít know. I feel like it would just be sort of
electric to be a part of it. I have a friend who worked on the Footloose
remake, and they said that everyoneís energy was just crazy because
everyone knows how great the first one was so theyíre expecting so much
from the second one. And I feel like it would be so much fun and the
choreography would be amazing because Kenny Ortega is absolutely amazing
and it would just be a blast. I would really hope that works out because
everybody saw it so Iím hoping that was a verbal contract.
S. Block Yes, it could be another huge opportunity for you.
M. Moore Yes, definitely.
Moderator We go to Henry Hanks with CNN.com.
H. Hanks Another caller from Georgia here so congratulations for winning
the first for Georgia, and I was wondering which of all the routines you
did that you felt that you worked the hardest on and you were proudest
of it for that reason?
M. Moore The routine that we wereóitís kind of an odd one. The routine
that I think I was the most proud of was the tango routine that I did
with Marko because it was our first ballroom style and they gave us the
standard American tango, which is so hard because you have to keep your
connection basically the whole time. And when I tell you that in
rehearsalóand Nigel even said that. He said in rehearsals it didnít look
like that. I didnít even look that good, and Marko and I just kept
working on it and we kept working at it. We went to rehearsal space
everyday afterwards and we were there until like 11:45 at night. We were
pounding it to the ground with that number and to get positive comments
about it and for Mary to say, ďNo, it wasnít perfect but it was good, it
was not badĒ was just such a relief because we worked so hard. And we
wanted our first ballroom number to just come out well, and thatís
definitely the one I was most proud of that we got through.
Moderator We go to Mike Hughes with TV America.
M. Hughes Melanie, I was really surprised that you went to Fordham and
that you were an art major rather than a dance major so tell us both
halves of that. Why did a Georgia kid go to a New York City school
especially when your boyfriends going to Georgia and why arenít you
majoring in dance, which youíre so good at?
M. Moore Well, I knew that I wanted to go to New York because I have
always loved it. We always took family vacations there and I knew that
if I wanted to pursue dancing that it was the best place, and then when
I decided that I wasnít going to do dancing in college it was sort of my
momís and my decision. We just thought that dancing is such a hard
industry to break into and it is smarter to have a backup plan and
something that you can really go off of because you can get hurt. And I
could break my legs and I would never really be able to dance again, and
you always need something that you can really fall back on.
That was my decision because art is definitely my second love and thatís
why I went to school for that, and then it was my final decision to go
to New York City was when I knew that I would be pursuing art and not
dance because I knew that I could take amazing classes in the city so I
sort of got the best of both worlds. It was a nice compromise between my
mom and me.
Moderator Weíll go to Rodney Ho with the Atlanta Journal.
R. Ho I wanted to ask you, to follow up with Mike Hughesís question
about art what is your specialty in the art fields?
M. Moore My specialty is oil painting. I mean Iíve done a lot of
everything but oil painting is definitely my favorite. I like to do
portraits, more impressionistic because those are just my favorite.
R. Ho Anything online that we could see?
M. Moore I donít have anything online right now. I had to start over
basically when I got in college because I am an art major so you have to
start back over with charcoals and basic drawing classes, so I donít
have anything right now but I can probably get some stuff up online.
Moderator Weíll go to Beth Kwiatkowski with Reality TV World.
B. Kwiatkowski Melanie, just a follow up, you won with 47% of the 11.5
million home viewer votes. Thatís a huge margin given it was a four-way
vote so what are your thoughts about that? Do you have any theories
about why you had so much fan support or ideas about why viewers were so
drawn to you or do you think it was just you were relatable or your
personality? What are your thoughts on that?
M. Moore I really have no idea. I was just surprised. Literally I was
just like, oh my gosh; 47, wow. I donít know I tried to make sure that
my personality really came through in everything that I was saying and I
definitely think it hadóI always laugh. I always laugh at myself. I can
never take myself too seriously and I definitely think that came
through. I mean I hope that Iím relatable to people. I would hope that
they see something in me that inspire them to get up and do something.
Maybe thatís why, I donít know.
Moderator Weíll go to JD Montgomery with YacketyYack.com.
J. Montgomery Itís been brought up today a few times, of course,
throughout the whole session the whole front runner idea. I was just
wondering if there was a particular comment or critique from a
particular judge or guest judge that kind of stuck in your mind
throughout the whole session of kind of a standout; hey, this is about
me type of motivating comment?
M. Moore No. I canít say that there is anything that stuck out in my
mind in particular. Just because I know as far as the judgesí comments
go what they say means a lot to me but really how I felt about the
dances is really whatís important to me, and as long as I get out there
and I do the best that I possibly can thatís what really matters to me.
It was really nice to be getting praise so much from the judges and to
be getting such nice comments but at the end of the day it really
matters about how I felt and how America felt about it.
I donít know. I didnít ever want to consider myself a front-runner. I
know it had been said so much but I feel like once you put that pressure
on yourself it adds a lot of stress, and I never wanted to think about
oh, I need to measure up to what I did last week and I need to measure
up because Iím the front-runner. I didnít ever want to put that in my
head because I didnít need that stress. I put enough pressure on myself
as it was, so I tried to stay away from that idea.
Moderator Letís go next to Debra Seirle with Dance Informa.
D. Seirle I just wanted to know what your plans are now for the huge
prize money youíve won. Do you have any things you definitely want to go
and spend it on or any plans?
M. Moore I donít know. Everyone has said to sort of like indulge myself
on one thing because Ö so crazy and then put the rest of it away, and I
donít know. This is so stupid and crazy but I sort of want to get really
nice carry-on luggage so I can feel really cool when I walk into the
airport when I travel or maybe like a nice ring or something. I donít
even know and then I just want to put the rest of it away.
D. Seirle Thatís sort of random. You want to get nice carryon luggage.
M. Moore Or like a watch or something. I donít know.
D. Seirle Yes, oh, thatís cool. Okay, yes, just wondering if you wanted
to go out and buy a car or anything like that?
M. Moore No, I donít want to drive. I want to go back to New York. I
donít really want to drive.
Moderator Letís go to Mike Hughes with TV America.
M. Hughes Yes, just to follow on that a bit. I didnít know if you came
from a comfortable family financially or not. What did your dad do for a
living before he died and what does your mother do for a living? Because
they seem very supportive of you, is there any kind of Ö in their
background or anything?
M. Moore Well, my mom was a nurse and she got into executive nursing and
now sheís a nursing consultant, and my dad was a risk analyst before he
died. I mean I definitely come from a comfortable family. Weíre not
struggling in any way but my mom has worked so hard to put us in a
comfortable position, and she always puts my sister and I before she
puts herself. And sheís instilled such a good work ethic in us so weíre
very ready to work for it, and I think that has definitely shown because
I donít really want to spend the money. I want to keep it and make sure
that itís safe so if I really need it later that I can use it.
Moderator Weíll go back to Beth Kwiatkowski with Reality TV World.
B. Kwiatkowski Melanie, Nigel said you had everything that he wanted in
a female dancer while the judges also commented how you tended to master
every style or genre of dance that you attempted to learn and perform.
It seemed like the judges were suggesting you danced so effortlessly so
was there actually a style of dance you found very difficult and
struggled to learn, and did you face any major struggles during the
session as a whole? I know you talked about the tango and the ballroom a
little bit butó
M. Moore Yes. Well, I definitely hadnít been trained in ballroom and
that was basically the only style besides disco that I hadnít ever taken
a class in, so those were definitely struggles but the hardcore hip-hop
with NappyTabs with Twitch was definitely a struggle for me. I mean you
guys have seen how I move. I donít move so hard and quick and it was so
fast, and they knew that I could do it so they gave me a really hard
piece but it was super challenging. I donít think I would have gotten
through it without Twitch because he was everything for me. He just got
me through that.
B. Kwiatkowski Sure and youíve discussed the offers youíve received but
whatís going to be on your to-do-list after the So You Think You Can
Dance tour, and what are your plans? What do you hope to accomplish?
M. Moore I donít know. Right now Iím thinking that I really want to go
back to school but major in dance rather than art just because Iím so
inspired and people have asked me about choreography and things like
that and I donít consider myself a choreographer at all. I can improve
my solos and I can do that kind of stuff but Iím definitely a dancer
right now and not a choreographer, and I look up to people like Stacey
and Sonya so much, and I would not classify myself with them in any way.
Maybe after some schooling and learning how to choreograph and really
just a little bit of growing up then Iíll really be able to choreograph.
I donít know. Iím definitely going to be auditioning though soó
Moderator Weíll go back to Debra Seirle with Dance Informa.
D. Seirle I was wondering if they ask you to be an All Star next session
would you like to be one?
M. Moore Oh, my gosh; I have already told them that I donít care what I
have to do I will be an All Star next session without a doubt. I told
them that from the minute I got into the top ten. I said, ďOkay, so
hereís the thing. I got into the top ten. That means I have to be an All
Star next year.Ē I donít care whether you put me in Bollywood. I donít
care whether you put me in disco. I will be here and so I really want to
be an All Star, and Iím hoping that I may be able to be like an
assistant for some people next year to soó
D. Seirle An assistant for the choreographers?
M. Moore Yes, maíam.
Moderator And a question from JD Montgomery with YacketyYack.com.
J. Montgomery You mentioned your interest in choreography, and I was
just wondering if there was a particular choreographer this session that
you felt you learned the most from or that you kind of connected the
M. Moore I definitely think that the choreographer that challenged me
the most and she pushed me the hardest was Sonya Tayeh. I didnít get to
work with her really intensely until the end when I got to work with her
and Sasha, and she pushed me so hard because she knew that ďGame OnĒ was
going to be a challenge for me because of the dynamics. They were
totally different than what my body naturally does, and she has just
been so inspiring through the whole process.
She really cares about each and every one of us that were in the top 20,
to the top ten, for the top four, and then I donít know. Sheís been life
changing and sheís so inspiring to all of us that I could not have asked
for somebody better to work with. I mean definitely all the
choreographers were super inspiring but I think that she took it to more
a relationship with us rather than a choreographer stance, and we really
knew that she cared about us.
J. Montgomery Thatís good, and thereís definitely been like the running
theme with all the other dancers that weíve talked to. Sonya seems to be
a very standout asset to the show, so thank you for that.
M. Moore Yes, she is amazing and her choreography is ridiculous. All of
its crazy outstanding and I donít know she just likeówhen youíre in a
piece with her sheís really intimidating and sheís very scary but when
you dance you know that sheís watching and you know that sheís really
caring about what youíre doing and sheís pushing through it with you so
itís really nice.
Moderator Thank you and Iíll turn it back to Ms. Seymour for any closing
K. Seymour All right, thank you, everyone, for joining us for the
conference call. There will be a transcript available on Monday.
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