Josh Hellyer dishes on SYTYCD Canada
What exactly does a “warm-up host” do?
It’s a pretty big ordeal. I’m the first one on stage and the last one to go.
My job is to pump up the crowd, make everyone feel welcome and as if they’re really part of the show. There are so many kids who come to the show who aren’t of age to actually audition.
But this is great chance for them to actually dance on the stage of the show. So I’ll just ask the audience, “So who here thinks that they can dance?”
There are all these 13-year-old girls who will come up and are so shy. Then the second the music comes on, they’re incredible dancers and just the fiercest beings. That’s what my job entails – finding people in the audience who can help lift the spirits of everyone who is there.
How do you choose who you invite onto the stage?
It just depends on the person. Sometimes they can be enthusiastic, but then sometimes it can be just a shy little person standing in the front of our mosh-pit area and I look at them and I’m like, “I feel there’s something inside of you.”
Do these sorts of things happen throughout the taping?
If we’re delayed technically or a commercial break is going really long during the taping I just have to pull out all the stops to make sure everybody’s feeling energized and happy to be there.
Part of my job is also to inform the audience what’s happening so they don’t feel completely in the lurch.
Is it intimidating having celebrities in the audience?
It’s always fun for me to pull them up and make them dance and be ridiculous and get them to have a good time. Ben Mulroney’s been to the show and he was the absolute best sport. And Seamus O’Regan from Canada AM, whenever he comes to the show we do a waltz.