Team Bruno wins ABC's 'Dance War: Bruno vs. Carrie Ann'
By Christopher Rocchio, 02/19/2008
Team Bruno may have lost a couple battles, but they ultimately won the war.
The Bruno Tonioli-led singing and dancing group was revealed to be Dance War: Bruno vs. Carrie Ann's winners during last night's live finale broadcast of the ABC reality competition series.
"I am so delighted. I am lost for words, and coming from me -- I'm telling you -- it takes a lot of doing," Bruno told Dance War host Drew Lachey following the victory. "It's such a great opportunity for these young men and women. Their strength, what I've been through with them, you have no idea. I worked them to the limit. Never a complaint. They worked like professionals from Day 1."
Team Bruno's four members -- Kelsey Bourg, a 20-year-old from West Monroe, LA; Phillip Bernier, a 24-year-old from Sterling, VA; Lacey Mason, a 22-year-old from Nashville, TN; and Zack Wilson, a 25-year-old from Saratoga Springs, UT -- received the grand prize of a recording contract with Hollywood Records.
"I can't even explain it," Kelsey told Drew after her team's victory. "We worked so hard. I can't even explain it. I can't."
It was a comeback of sorts for Team Bruno, as the Dancing with the Stars judge was forced to eliminate two members of his team -- Charity Baroni and Tony Czar -- after his squad received the lowest number of home viewer votes during the first two weeks of the competition.
However home viewers came through for Team Bruno the next week, as Team Carrie Ann -- led by Bruno's fellow Dancing with the Stars judge Carrie Ann Inaba -- had received the lowest number of votes, forcing her to cut Alyssa.
Home Viewer votes cast immediately following last Monday night's live Latin-themed broadcast -- which saw Team Carrie Ann perform "Conga and "I Need to Know" while Team Bruno performed "Sway" and "Whine Up" -- crowned Team Bruno the show's champions.
"Thank you! Thank you!" gushed Bruno when the final voting results were read, falling to his knees and blowing kisses to the home viewing audience.
Team Carrie Ann's five members -- Marquis "Qis" Walker, a 26-year-old from Los Angeles, CA; Bradley Johnson, a 24-year-old from Nashville, TN; Mariel Sarangay, a 19-year-old from Chicago, IL; Elizabeth Huett, a 20-year-old from Riverside, CA; and Chris Holyfield, an 18-year-old from San Bernardino, CA -- looked disappointed after Drew revealed the results, but Carrie Ann seemed to take the defeat in stride.
"It's not as tough as I thought it would be," said Carrie Ann following her defeat. "This team is so incredible, and just remember -- Elizabeth, Bradley, Mariel, Chris and Qis -- you guys got great things coming to you. You guys were wonderful."
Prior to last week's voting results being revealed during last night's broadcast, the two teams each performed their best routine from the season, with Team Bruno performing "These Boots Were Made For Walkin'" and Team Carrie Ann performing "Papa Was A Rollin' Stone."
In addition, each squad performed the single they recorded earlier in the week, with Team Carrie Ann performing "Come With It" while Team Bruno performed "Falling In Love."
"That was incredible," commented Zack after his group performed their first Hollywood Records' single. "I mean, I'm sure it's all our dreams to have our own song and be able to perform it. But to be able to perform it in-front of millions of viewers for the first time, that was incredible. I loved it."
Dance War's finale broadcast also included a group number with Team Bruno, Team Carrie Ann and Drew -- Dancing with the Stars'second-season champ and a former boy band member -- performing "Stepping Out with My Baby."