Kylie Peitz and Alex Jones. DDeRosa photo.
Wellington, Fla – March 9, 2017 - The dance floor at the Grande Ballroom was hopping Wednesday night and when the whirling, twirling and leaping were done, 12-year-olds Kylie Peitz and Alex Jones danced their way to the win at American Equestrians Got Talent (AEGT) Week IX.
The pair cut a rug in a 1940s-style dance duet titled “Big Time” and stole the judges' and the over-flowing audience’s hearts. Martha Graham Company principal dancer and judge Ben Schultz said they have great chemistry and fellow pro ballroom dancer and judge Sherry Tautiva compared the duo to Judy Garland and Mickey Rooney. Peitz and Jones, students at the Bak Middle School of the Arts in West Palm Beach, claimed the AEGT $1,000 prize from sponsor On Course Consignment and the chance to compete for $10,000 in the March 19 Finale.
The talented pair also advanced to the second round as soloists but their lively jazz-inspired duet stole the show and, when their music faltered, they picked up the dance from the beginning like seasoned pros and never missed a beat. They have been dancing together at Dance Universe Studio for less than a year and dream of being professional dancers or dance teachers. They agreed that performing was the highlight of the evening for them.
“I felt more excited than nervous,” Peitz said. “I just love performing –especially as a duet. This piece is really fun for both of us. I didn’t want it to end!”
Her dance partner agreed. “I thought the whole experience overall was very intriguing,” Jones said. “I thought it was nice to come in here and perform for everyone. The audience was alive and that kept us going and made us work even harder.”
Their next step is to polish their moves for the March 19 Finale at the Adequan Global Dressage Festival showgrounds, where the dancers and 13 other acts will compete for the $10,000 grand prize offered by Robert Dover, chef d'equipe of the U.S. Dressage Team, and Robert Ross of Keller Williams Real Estate Luxury Division.
Not only will the winner claim the grand prize, but 10 percent of the total proceeds from all nine audition weeks and the Finale will be presented to the equestrian sport for which the winner competes.
The contestants in the Finale and their chosen sport (in the order of Finale performance) include:
- Alix Who? (jumping)
- Cassie Ortiz (dressage)
- Laura León (dressage)
- Kylie Peitz and Alex Jones (jumping)
- Olivia Willis (dressage)
- Robyn Marie Lamp and Edgar Miguel Abréu (dressage)
- Roberto Gallardo (dressage)
- Robert Nichols (endurance)
- Zach Duckworth (jumping)
- Kyaunnee Richardson (dressage)
- Frances Novella (eventing)
- Michael Boone (dressage)
- Brandon Olavarria (endurance)
- Grady Lyman (jumping)
Robert Dover announced his three wild-card finalists, including
Alix Who? (top), Cassie Ortiz (left) and Grady Lyman (right). DDeRosa photos.
You may vote for your favorite performer ahead of the Finale via text. Remember that each vote will help fund US Equestrian High Performance Programs.
- Text to: 565 12
- Enter message: AEGT
- Click on the link in the reply.
- Select or enter the dollar amount you’d like to donate. Each $5 donation increment counts as one vote.
- Enter your payment and contact information.
- Vote for your favorite performer from the selection.
To buy tickets for the Finale, go to AEGTFinale.com. There, you can also bid on the chance to spend a day with an entire U.S. Equestrian Team from Rio! Whether you choose dressage, jumping, para-dressage or eventing, or all four, you and your friends can host a series of clinics, a symposium, a dinner or even a car wash with these incredible athletes. Don’t miss the fun and excitement of the March 19 Finale of American Equestrians Got Talent.
American Equestrians Got Talent, a fundraiser to benefit US Equestrian High Performance Programs, returns to Wellington, Florida, for its third year in 2017. Contestants participate in weekly auditions to earn a spot to compete in the season finale. Celebrity judges at each audition critique the performances and the audience's applause determines who will progress to the Finale.
AEGT FAST FACTS
When: March 19, 2017
Where: Adequan® Global Dressage Festival show grounds, Wellington, Florida
Purchase Tickets and Tables: Go to: AEGTFinale.com
or contact Patty Scott at (917) 318-0425 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Online Auction: Your winning bid gets you a day with each member of one of our U.S. 2016 Rio Equestrian Teamsthat competed in Rio
Jumping, Dressage, Eventing or Para-Dressage! Bid now at AEGTFinale.com
Prize: The winner, who will be named America's Most Talented Equestrian, will receive a grand prize of $10,000 sponsored by Robert Dover, chef d'equipe of the U.S. Dressage Team, and Robert Ross, P.A., luxury equestrian realtor for Keller Williams.
Vote Now for Your Favorite Finalist:
Each vote is a donation to US Equestrian High Performance Programs.
Vote more, donate more and your favorite performer has a better chance of winning. Here's how:
From your mobile devicetext to 565 12 | Enter message: AEGT | Click on the link in the reply | Select the dollar amount to donate (each $5 donation increment counts as one vote | Enter your payment and contact information | Vote for your favorite performer from the selection
Robert Dover at: Rdover2@aol.com or(561) 758-6186