‘Lip Sync Battle’ Live: Talent and Laughter Soar Where Voices Don’t

'Lip Sync Battle Live at Summerstage's big showdown was a rematch between siblings Derek and Julianna Hough.

I had never heard of the new Spike TV series Lip Sync Battle (airing Thursday nights) until I learned an event related to it was slated for an evening at Summerstage in New York City’s Central Park. Even then, I didn’t even realize that LL Cool J was part of the show till the day before Lip Sync Battle Live happened on Monday July 13th. But the loveable rapper makes for an excellent host with his sidekick Chrissy Teigen assisting by providing some oddball humor. As a intro Doug E. Fresh warmed up the Central Park crowd.

The televised competition premiered in April with performances from siblings Julianne and Derek Hough where, apparently, Julianne walked away with the title belt with her show stopping version of the Lonely Island’s “I Just Had Sex”. For the first ‘Live’ version of the show, the Houghs returned for a rematch. The show’s structure gave them each one song to casually perform before a brief intermission then a final round where they could go no holds barred. The intermission entertainment, teasing a future episode, was a competition between Broad City stars Abbi Jacobson and Ilana Glazer. The sparkly Jacobson performed “And I Am Telling You I’m Not Going” from the film Dreamgirls, while Glazer took on the Weather Girls’ “It’s Raining Men” with raincoat discarding gentlemen as her backup dancers. When Julianne returned for her final number, she came out clad in a tight gold number that to reprise “I Just had Sex”, while Derek averted his gaze. But it was he who doled out the comeuppance as he returned to conclude the event in an almost-as-tight-as-hers white jumpsuit to perform The Darkness’s “I Believe in a Thing Called Love”. He ended up stealing the show and walking away with the belt for his wild performance. It goes to show that Lip Sync Battle is the perfect show for celebrities to let their creativity, like in the hilarious video clip of Anne Hathaway doing Miley Cyrus’s “Wrecking Ball” from the show, and their dancing talents, or hilarious attempts to, soar given that voices don’t. I look forward for the inevitable rematch between the Houghs as they stand 1-1 now.

The Summerstage 30th Anniversary Season is well under way but there are lots of great shows of all varieties still to come. Some of the upcoming events: Smorgasburg vendors visit Central Park on the 21st but that’s already sold out while Quantic, Gilles Peterson and Afrika Bambaataa are free there on August 8th. Pete Rock and the film Time is Illmatic will be at Queensbridge Park on July 19th. Visit their homepage to get details on these shows and many, many more across the five boroughs.

Doug E. Fresh Intro:

Derek Hough and Julianne Hough intro and first round:

Hosts LL Cool J and Chrissy Teigen:

Abbi Jacobson and Ilana Glazer of Broad City:

Hoda Kotb:

Julianne Hough final round – The Lonely Island “I Just Had Sex”:

Doug E. Fresh and LL Cool J Freestyle:

Derek Hough final round – The Darkness “I Believe in a Thing Called Love”:


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