The Greatest Dancer had one of the greatest feel good moments when 21-year-old Andrew Dancer, who has Down syndrome, left judge Cheryl in tears after his performance of Justin Timberlake’s “Can’t Stop the Feeling”. Andrew’s free-flowing dance and the joy coming off him during the audition captivated the audience and the judges.
Andrew started off with a relaxed and loose freestyle dance, which the audience loved straight away and he quickly got enough votes to pass the audition and open the studio to the audience. The young English dancer then quickly picked up energy and started doing cartwheels and the splits, which had the whole crowd cheering for him. Check out the performance below.
Andrew Self goes by the name Andrew Dancer on his social media channels and he is now 25 years old. His appearance on the first season of The Greatest Dancer not only impressed the judges but he left a big impression on the public as well, with 16.6 million people watching the performance on the BBC’s YouTube channel.
You can see a profile by the BBC on Andrew below, which showcases some more of his dance moves. Andrew’s journey with dance started at the age of 11 when he began teaching himself. Andrew’s mother Donna said on the profile that “when he’s walking he’s quite flat-footed, but the change in him when he dances is quite amazing. He’s just so graceful.”
Following his hit audition judge Cheryl was left in tears, along with plenty of audience members. The English pop star said “I just feel really moved by the whole thing. That was amazing. To see your excitement and see how much you thrive from an audience is such a special moment. It does something for your soul and you’re in your element.”
Judge Matthew Morrison was also a big fan. The Glee leading man said “that was absolutely incredible. I think you’re gonna inspire a lot of people with the performance you gave us today, so thank you so much.” This left Andrew obviously ecstatic and he wasn’t able to respond verbally, although his mother explained that he was overwhelmed as Glee is his “absolute favourite” television program.
Although he began as a self-taught dancer, Andrew later enrolled in the Orpheus Centre in Surrey, which is a performing arts center for young people with disabilities, which aims to promote greater independence through engagement in the arts. Andrew’s dance skills are not the only impressive thing about him however. He also has a remarkably sensible philosophy which we can all learn from, stating: “I have down syndrome; it doesn’t stop me doing anything.”
Andrew’s story really caught on with fans online, with comments like: “You can’t help but smile when you watch someone like Andrew doing what they love and were born to do. We need more people like Andrew in this world!” and “Couldn’t believe that a dance could make me cry. He’s amazing. He has a gift. He’s more than a great dancer.” If you would like to see more from Andrew Dancer, you can subscribe to his YouTube channel or follow him on Instagram.