Chock full of pride and inspiration. With strong possibility of popping and locking.

A couple of months ago, I posted something I’d been holding back for a little while: how I honestly feel about living away from England.  Though I still don’t quite feel at home here, I am thankful for everything my time in Canada has taught and brought me… but every once in a while I can’t help but feel terribly homesick.

Like the whole of last week, when a small phenomenon known as Britain’s Got Talent took over the UK and the whole of the Internet. Now, stay with me here, I know America’s Got Talent has a bit of a bad reputation – but BGT brought us Susan Boyle, Paul Potts, and Diversity – the street dance crew that set the bar for the future of modern dance, combining innovative DJing, INSANE synchronization, unpredictable moves, comedy, surprises and stories throughout, pretty much rendering every former style obsolete.  I remember watching last year’s final, eating my tea with my mouth open and my fork stuck mid-air, not being able to take my eyes off them for a second.

This year, I was a little nervous the acts wouldn’t live up to last year’s standard. But with the strange, the compelling yet vomit-worthy (yes, a regurgitator made it to the semi finals – and tore at the country’s heartstrings!), and the downright bizarre have also come moments of sheer genius that have given me goosebumps, and had me giving standing ovations in my living room, applauding like a madwoman. (This is why we have curtains.)

What I love about this competition is that it gives the opportunity to showcase not only variety, but imagination, something different, and gives ordinary people a platform upon which to surprise the world. This year’s final was nothing short of STUNNING, and I honestly had no idea who’d take the title for 2010 and go on to perform for the Queen. Here are some of the acts that made my SPINE tingle with awesomeness:

Spelbound – a young gymnastics troupe who auditioned to Carmina Burana, with routines including human cannonballs, bodies as skipping ropes, launching bodies over the judging panel and SUPER HUMAN STRENGTH, balancing upside down, on their heads, sideways on a single hand, building stories, drama, and will literally make your jaw drop to the floor. I’ve never seen anything quite so exhilarating and awe-inspiring (and so proud they’ll be representing the country – amazing winners!!)

Tobias Mead, a 22-year old “body popper” whose limbs and joints appear to be held on by jelly, or string… who absolutely defies physics and throws in totally creepy and downright GENIUS imagination. Probably the most mind blowing two minutes you’ll ever see.  Plus, he’s gorgeous. LOVE him:

Tina & Chandi. The first human-canine dance team I’ve ever seen – this dog does whole routines, ballet, Sinatra, and the can-can all in perfect timing. Their bond reeks of absolute devotion to one another and it’s one of the most simultaneously adorable and impressive acts ever:

And I couldn’t leave out everyone’s favourite 80-something diva, Janey Cutler. A great grandmother from Scotland who’s delightfully oblivious, endearingly full of absolute joy, and belts it out just as well as Shirley Bassey and Whitney Houston. I ADORE her spirit, her strength, her absolute DARLING personality, and the fact the her massive voice blew the entire nation away. NAN’S GOT TALENT!!

The finale was made up of all these acts, as well as a street dance comedy double act, the man of a thousand voices (<3), another Susan Boyle moment with the petrified but incredible opera-singing ACCOUNTANT, the smallest boy band in the world, a UFO flying drummer and more… I’ve always been a little bit patriotic, but after being thoroughly blown away last week, I HAD to share with you one of the things that really make me love Great Britain.  I had no idea who’d possibly win this year…but it’s confirmed that one of the things on my 26-before-26 list is going to be learning to sing and DANCE.

Not ballroom dancing or hopping about my kitchen (although Ashalah may argue the latter)… but actually moving. Like Tobias!! I want to dance (and sing), even if I start from nothing. Even if it’s not for me – I want to try!! This year’s competition has filled me with pride and inspiration, so they’re both going on the list.

I hope you loved this lot as much as I did. 🙂


  1. I must say, I do love BGT and watch the repeats (and my, do they do repeats in the Middle East!) when I’m home.

    Tobias was fantastic. I have the world’s largest crush on him. It’s kind of sick.

    Nan Cutler was phenomenal! I couldn’t believe it.

    Sigh. I wish I owned a telly so I could watch all this on a bigger screen than my laptop! O_O


  2. Ha ha! I love this post. We don’t have BGT but I always love how diverse your posts are. You are like the greatest person I know, you know that??

    Hope your week is going well Emily.


    Hannah Katy

  3. BGT was the best this yr!! Tobias was amaaaaaaaaazing every single routine was incredlbe but i’m glad you put the first one up just cus it was so cool & creepy!!!!

    love Janey Cutler & that dog was to die for!!! i want one. loved this season thx for sharing & i definately want to see you pop & lock lol.

    1. Wasn’t his first audition amazing!! I’m glad I wasn’t the only one who was blown away 🙂 And we’ll SEE how popping & locking goes before there is any talk at all of vlogs!

  4. that’s all kinds of awesome. lol just another way britain shows us americans up 😉 good luck with the list. i LOVE singing even if it’s only in the confines of my own car

  5. Fun! I’m not a huge fan of America’s Got Talent, Chad watches it sometimes (because he’s a crazy reality show junky…) but some of it is really cheesy and I just can’t waste my time on it. I agree there are some pretty cool ones sometimes.

  6. Ho…ly…CRAP!! All of those videos are incredible. Thank you for sharing them with us! I think my favorite was the kid drumming on the tilting UFO thingy. And the regurgitator?! MIND-BLOWINGLY WEIRD. 😛

    1. Oh I forget which I linked to, the billiard ball one or the engagement ring one but he was SO strange… and strangely compelling!! lol!! The little kid on the drums came top 3 in the final 🙂 What a sweetie!!

  7. Thanks for the reviews, you’ve got me all curious now! I haven’t watched any of it but you’ve definitely got me wanting to. Are these videos? My work computer is being lame and not showing them, if they are, so I’ll have to come back later to watch!

    And yay for wanting to try new things, it’s super important!! Stretching ourselves and pushing our limits is absolutely exhilerating! ❤

  8. Admittedly, I’m a little hormonal this week. But with that said, I cried throughout all of those videos. I was just…moved. People (and dogs) can do such incredible things!

  9. You are too cute. I love the enthusiasm you have for your country & their performers! So sweet!

    So have you converted Sweets to calling the evening meal ‘Tea’. For the longest time that confused me!

  10. Those were all SO incredible! I could never get into America’s Got Talent, but if Britain’s Got Talent showed here in the U.S., I would definitely be watching it! (I never really think to go on YouTube, lol!) The gymnast group was just unreal, Tobias was great (I love watching that style of dance), and the whole time during the Tina and Chandi routine, I was wishing I could teach my dog to do that!

    P.S. If you learn to pop and lock, you better be post a vlog! 🙂

    1. Oh you know it!! I should send you some more of the street dance entries, they were all amazing. I wish they had somewhere in Canada you could learn how to do that properly.

  11. The two things I wanted to get into this spring and didn’t were Britain’s Got Talent and the world cup, and somehow I ended up missing them both!

    Lucky for me BGT is all over youtube! I’m watching all of these now 🙂

    (Sorry I’m late to the party, wild day! lol)

  12. Woo! I think the solution here is to move to London! I’ll be there (hopefully) and it will be brilliant! Promise! 🙂

  13. Nothing beats original shows; America’s Got Talent is kind of ridiculous and annoying if you ask me. I prefer a lot of England’s shows to our own. Does that make me a bad American? I mean, Graham Norton? Jonathan Ross? They are so awesome. As are their guests!

  14. Okay Tobias is adorable. Is it weird that I got a little teary eyed when I saw his beaming smile as Simon praised him? I love this. Wow!

    Also, when you wrote this, “I remember watching last year’s final, eating my tea with my mouth open and my fork stuck mid-air, not being able to take my eyes off them for a second.” I could totally picture that in my head. Great visual!

    1. Oh no. we watch it at work sometimes over lunch and my boss always comes armed with a box of tissues! I cried a bit at Tobias too when he was talking initially about how his dad and brothers didn’t speak to him because he went into dance instead of football 😦 ❤

  15. so the ‘strong possibility of popping and locking’ makes me laugh everytime =) get the pillows for your friend you would for sure win best present EVER.

  16. You made my afternoon by sharing these clips, thank-you so much! I understand you missing England. I lived there for three years and I loved every moment of it. A wonderful place!

  17. Did you ever do the whole singing for the blogosphere thing? I’ll have to read your archives. I HAVEN’T BEEN HERE IN SO LONG. I love this place. And you! Of course.

  18. I was seriously laughing AND crying during Tina & Chandi’s piece. They are way too adorable!

    I do watch AGT. I watched 2 years ago and got supremely annoyed with the show. And I’m trying it again this year. I mean, they do have some awesome talent and some fresh new faces, but some of the people they put through I just don’t get! I mean, the prize is a show in Vegas…so when you put through a guy who can play a harmonica really good, well that’s great but WHO IN THEIR RIGHT MIND WOULD SEE A SHOW LIKE THAT IN VEGAS?!?!?! Ugh!

  19. Ohhh! So you mean to tell me, that Britain’s Got Talent isn’t rigged and the people in Britain do have talent?! On America’s Got Talent, no one does. Its nice for a change!

  20. Ooo, thanks for sharing those BGT links. I watched some of them and enjoyed it as I watch AGT and love it! I don’t really watch people who sing since I’m deaf & can’t tell the difference between good & bad singing unless the captioning says, “[off key]” lol.

  21. I did see tobias on your twitter! He’s great. the magic ball performance was GENIUS. he reminded me of the cute guy from the Notebook.. Ryan Gosling? 😛 But I LOVED the dog dancing!! Thanks for sharing.

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