After a dizzying, dazzling four-month journey from Davenport to L.A. for Quad Cities celebrity Essence Wilmington, the 20-year-old star was eliminated Wednesday night on FOX’s “So You Think You Can Dance.”
The Davenport North alum and aspiring rapper/dancer/choreographer/actor/model did not make it to the top 2 dancers, as the judges picked Keaton Kermode and Alexis Warr Burton to advance to the Aug. 10 finale, and vie for the $100,000 prize.
The Essence W. Dance Facebook page posted Wednesday night: “Essence W. we are more than proud of you! Out of 1,400 dancers you made it ALL THE WAY to the Semi-finals and placed 3rd!! Congratulations and it is only UP from here.”
In an interview on the high-energy, inspiring TV series Wednesday, Wilmington said: “Just be yourself; be proud of how you were brought up, and whatever happens, you have to keep going. Because you’re gonna miss 100 percent of the shots you don’t take.”
“I just feel so blessed to be here,” Essence told the crowd at the close of the show. “Everything, I did, I’m so happy.” She gave a tearful shout-out to her parents, who gave her a standing ovation in the audience. “You sacrificed so much for me.”
On Essence’s Facebook page, among the many congratulatory comments was from Shannon Finch: “You’re a star baby girl! You make the quad cities proud and your parents have a diamond!”
Davenport teacher Erin Hayek Gehret wrote: “I love the shout out to your parents, they are so amazing!!! Excellent job, Essence, way to represent Davenport in a positive light!!”
For more information on the show and to see Season 17 episodes, click HERE.