SYTYCD: The Yak Talks To Eliminated Dancer Jasmine Mason

After watching their friends Brittany & Carlos be eliminated last week, the remaining 18 dancers gave it their all in this weeks SYTYCD! Before the dancers took the stage, we found out that this week they would not be eliminated at the beginning of the show, but at the end as in the previous season of SYTYCD, because producer/Judge Nigel Lythgoe listened to the fans after last weeks show and tweaked the format. We also learned contestant Jade Zuberi had to withdraw from the competition this week, due to a torn meniscus that will require surgery followed by a recuperation period of three or four months.

So the energy was high, and I’m sure nerves were crazy as they danced for regular judges Nigel Lythgoe & Brittney Murphy and along with guest judges Paula Abdul & Erin Andrews!  After the dancers finished their performances, the bottom 2 guys.  Curtis Holland and BluPrint,  found out they got a pass from elimination due to Jade having to drop from the competition. All bottom 3 girls, Jasmine Mason, Jenna Johnson, and Alexis Juliano, were asked to Dance For Their Lives… we then found out we had to say goodbye to Jasmine!


The Yak got to participate in on a conference call this week with Jasmine Mason…

All the judges seem to kind of agree that you didn’t really let loose and just have as much fun in the routines as you could have, to a certain extent, how do you feel about the way you performed it.  Do you believe it was as quirky as you could have made it and given it as much energy as you could have?

Jasmine: Well, when I was doing the routine I felt that I was being quirky and I was having fun.  But obviously the judges know what they’re talking about, and I’m sure I could have loosened up a little bit.  But I was so focused on trying to be this prim and proper queen that I think I kind of let that take over a little bit.

You weren’t in the bottom six last week, so did it surprise you that you landed in the bottom six this week and also that you were the girl that ended up getting eliminated?

Jasmine: Yes, I was a little bit surprised.  But the show is so unpredictable.  The bottom three last week I didn’t think was going to be the bottom three.  You’re just always prepared and you always are practicing your solo, so I was a little surprised.  But I wasn’t too surprised, because it’s so unpredictable.

How did you feel about the twist last week in which they revealed the results at the beginning of the show, and this week they revealed them at the end.  Do you think that was the right move to make?

Jasmine: Honestly, I think eliminations, no matter what, are going to be hard, and they’re going to be sad.  So if it was at the beginning or the end it doesn’t matter, because it’s still so hard.  I think it’s a little bit better because it’s really hard to go back on the stage and perform, but knowing that it’s your last time, you can probably be in it a little bit more, do you know what I mean?  So I think either way it’s tough.

Nigel last week was pretty unimpressed with everyone’s Dance for Your Life performances.  Do you feel like the bottom six dancers this week kind of felt pressured to up their game and improve their dance for the live performances, or at least feel the pressure to deliver it better?

Jasmine: Yes, I feel like everyone upped their game, because you have to really dance for your life on that show and the judges are really looking at that solo, and you have to show what you can do, because that’s how you got on the show.  I feel like everyone, we had another week to kind of pull ourselves together.  We saw Brittany and Carlos go home, and nobody wants to be that person, so we all practiced a lot, put our head in the game, and I feel like everyone really stepped it up.

 What do you plan to do next?

Jasmine: Oh my gosh, I’m not stopping here.  I want to obviously continue my dance career, get back with my dance agent, see what we can do, but I had so much fun on the stage acting and playing different roles that I think that I really want to get into some acting stuff and see where that goes.

What was your favorite performance that you did?

Jasmine: Definitely the blindfold with Alan, because I was so proud of us, because it was our first week together, and anybody’s first week together is the hardest, because you have to find that trust in that person right away, instantly, and a connection, and not only did we have to do that, but we had to do it with blindfolds on.  I felt so accomplished when we pulled that routine off, so that was probably one of my favorite routines to do on the show.

I wanted to know what brought you back to try out again for the show and if that was a tough decision to come back.

Jasmine: Once I heard a “no” last year I was like, I’m probably not going to come back, because it was really hard to bounce back on your feet because you prepare yourself to be on the show, of course.  But once the time came to decide if I was going to … or not, I was like, I have to do this because I made it so far last year that I know I can do it again and I know I can get on the show.  So I really trained hard and I wanted it so much more than I did last year, because last year I was very like, you know, whatever happens, happens, it was my first year, and I didn’t expect to get that far, and then I had gotten that far and I was like, I have to do it again.  It would be not very smart if I didn’t try out again, so yes.

It seems like being on the show can be tough.  There’s a lot of information being thrown at you, there are a lot of emotions flying around, so how did you stay focused throughout your time in the competition?

Jasmine: Well, everybody there is with you and we’re all going through the same thing, so I was like everyone really helped each other, all the other contestants, and we always were rehearsing, we were always practicing, you’re also taking in what the judges are saying.  So you and your partner are going over all the corrections you might get, and I just really tried to focus on me and my partner’s connection and just rehearsing all the time.  If we weren’t rehearsing in the studio with our choreographer, we were finding a spot where we could rehearse, whether it was on the street corner, but no matter what we were always trying to focus on our routine, no matter what.  We weren’t getting sidetracked or social networking all the time.  We were really just focusing on us and making our routine better.  And you have no time really to do anything else, because you’re always rehearsing.  Everyone thinks we have that one day in rehearsal which is on camera, but no, you have another six hour rehearsal the next day.  And it’s really tough, but I loved it.

Is  there any choreographer in specific that you wish you got to work with that you didn’t?

Jasmine: I would say that I wish I got to work with Stacey Tookey, because every single piece she puts out on the stage is beautiful, and her concepts are beautiful.  She’s beautiful.  So I really wanted to work with her, because looking at past seasons everyone seems to have really gotten a good routine with her, and I wish that I could have worked with her.

What do you think Alan brought out in you as a partner… How did he help you or enhance your performance?

Jasmine: Alan is seriously the hardest worker ever.  It’s 10:00 at night and he’s like, “Let’s rehearse.”  And I’m just lying in bed like, “Okay, let’s go.”  I feel like he really made me, I had to step up my game just to be with him, because he was always trying to practice and working hard, and if he didn’t get one thing he was doing it over and over and over again, so he kind of taught me to be more persistent.  And he was such a good partner.  I had so much trust in him.  And if we messed up a lift, he always had me and he just made me feel a little bit more confident in us, because it’s your first time partnering with somebody and it’s going to be hard, but he was like, “No, we’ve got this.”  And he believed in us and he believed in me and he helped me a lot through this competition.

Was there any particular dance genre that you wish you would have been able to accomplish or take on that you didn’t get to?

Jasmine: Oh my gosh, hip hop.  I wanted to do hip hop so bad, because it just seemed so fun on the show and not as stressful as the tango or a blindfolded dance.  I really wanted to do hip hop so bad, and probably work with Nappy Tab or Luther Brown, I don’t know, but I just wanted to get the opportunity to do that.  And I feel like if I was on the show that would have been my next genre, but I’ll just take a lot of classes here at home.

Knowing that you guys build good relationships with your partners, what kind of words of encouragement or advice did you leave him with when you left?

Jasmine: I was just like, “You need to find the trust that you found in me with your new partner, and go for it.  Don’t be afraid.  Don’t hold back.  You have this.”  He is such a hard worker and I know that he’s going to be amazing at every single genre that he gets.  He did jazz, and he’s never done jazz before, and he really trusted in me, and we helped each other out.  And I feel like Malece, that’s his next partner, and they’re just going to go out there and they’re going to kill it.  And I told him just to “Go for it.  Be happy.  You’ve got this.”  That’s what I told him.