inTENsity’s Exit Interview! X Factor Supergroup Talks Elimination and Simon Cowell’s Glee Comparisons
On last night’s X Factor USA elimination show, America voted inTENsity into the bottom two. They sang for their lives, but the judge’s had to let them go. We ran to their post-show press conference to hear how they felt about it!
inTENsity group members: Nick Dean, Francesca Duncan, John Lindahl, Emily Michalak, Arin Ray, Lauren Ashley, Ellona Santiago, Ma’at Bingham, Austin Percario, Emily Wilson
Do you hope to stay together as a group, or break off into solo acts? Austin Percario: Hopefully we can continue as a group. We just want to try and be positive, even though right now it might seem like the world is kind of ending. We’re just going to try and wait to see what kind of opportunities we get from this.
What it was like to work with Groups judge Paula Abdul? Ma’at Bingham: I think Paula is one of the most amazing mentors because she is one of the only judges who was there every day at the rehearsal studio. She would always help us. She would actually be our choreographer. We didn’t have anyone else, she would always make it up. It was just so amazing having her as a mentor.
Did being part of a group put you at a disadvantage? John Lindahl: It is definitely a lot easier to connect with a solo artist on screen. [...] With a group, let alone a ten-person group, you can’t really focus on every single person in the group. You only get a limited amount of time with them. I feel like America didn’t really get to connect with us a lot, and we hope that eventually, they will.
Nick Dean: Rehearsals were really fun, but also extremely intense. We would spend long hours tightening up on choreography, because working with ten people - the look and feel of our performances was supposed to be very tight. We really focused on choreography.
On song choice and avoiding a “teenybopper” sound Franchesca: We were nervous with our first two song choices. We were originally going to sing “Kids in America” and ”We Got the Beat” and we just didn't really want to put up like a kind of childish or teenybopper kind of vibe. We wanted to be more pop and, like, edgy — so we actually chose the other song, “Party Rock Anthem” ourselves. I think it mixed really well. I think we performed really well.
What it was like to get eliminated by your own judge? Emily Wilson: We know that even though Paula chose the Stereo Hogzz over us, we know she still had a lot of faith in us. We understand how difficult it was to have to choose one from her own category.
John Lindahl: The last thing we wanted was to be in the bottom two with another group.
What did yiou think of Simon Cowell’s comment that they could be sort of like another Glee?
Franchesca Duncan: Honestly, we were so honored to get that compliment from Simon and the other judges. We’re different from Glee. We’re not exactly like them. But they’re so successful. [...] I take that as a really big complement. Hopefully one day we could be as successful as them, if we stay as a group and if we get noticed. [...]
We got kicked out of the competition and brought back. We know what it feels like. We’re the underdogs. We definitely know what that feels like. And that’s really similar to the people on Glee, because there’s a lot of underdogs there.
In the beginning, a lot of people didn’t believe in us, because we had 10 people and they didn’t think it would work out. We actually ended up really working out.
What will things be like for you now? Emily Wilson: The difference between us going home and Stereo Hogzz going home is when we go home, we’re all over the country. We have to hope that there will be someone who will notice us and want to sign us or something so that we can still be together.