The biggest dance competition on TV is back. In Us Weekly’s exclusive first look at World of Dance season 2, the judges are joined by brand new acts as well as 11 returning acts from season 1 of the NBC hit.
“The first season so superseded any of my expectations that I can’t even imagine what season two’s gonna be like,” judge Jennifer Lopez says in the video above. “Now everyone knows that this is the Olympics for dance, the biggest dance competition in the world.”
For season 2, Lopez is joined by season 1 judges Ne-Yo and Derek Hough as well as host Jenna Dewan. “Season 1 just set the standard,” Hough notes. In the clip, Ne-Yo also tells one performer that they put on “the first million dollar performance” of the season.
Dewan, 37, also explains that while it is a huge dance competition, that’s not always what attracts people to the show. “The talent is mind-blowing. It’s gonna be a really tough competition this year,” the Witches of East End alum says. “This is actually bigger than dance. It’s about people and their stories in their lives and where they’ve come to, to get to this point.”
Lopez echoes that thought. “Dancers have so much passion for what they do, so much passion for life,” the “El Anillo” singer, 48, says. “At the end of the day, we have great music and great dancers, things that will move you to tears and things that will make you want to get up and dance out of your seat.”
The mother of two also reflected on getting her start in dance during the FYC Emmy panel on Tuesday, May 1. “Honestly, watching these kids, I don’t think about my beginnings. They’re so far beyond what I could do at that age,” she said. “The limits to which they push themselves in this completion, it’s scary to me sometimes. I’m watching it and I’m thinking, ‘Please don’t break your neck!’ That’s how I feel, and I’m like digging my nails into Derek.’”
Lopez continued: “It takes me back to how much I love dance and how much I loved, you know … it’s universal. It’s not just about dance, it’s about dreams. It’s about wanting something, going for it, being unafraid and pushing yourself out of your comfort zone into limits that you never thought you could do. And shining in the moment that you need to. And it is riveting to watch.”
World of Dance premieres on NBC Tuesday, May 29, at 10 p.m. ET.