'The Glee Project' Exit Q&A: This week's eliminated contestant discusses opening up 'in front of an entire nation'
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On this week’s episode of The Glee Project, we said goodbye to Marissa Von Bleicken, the NYC native who won the last two homework challenges but struggled with the vocals for the video. “There hadn’t been a homework winner in the bottom three yet,” said the college student about her elimination. “So I was shaking in my boots waiting to find out what I had done so wrong to be the first one.” EW talked with Marissa about what’s next and what the “Vulnerability” challenge meant for her.
ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: On this week’s episode you finally got the iconic slushie to the face. Did it live up to all of the hype?
MARISSA VON BLEICKEN: It was definitely more painful than I though it would be. The concept of it is a lot funnier and more entertaining and exciting than you’d think, but it’s actually a very cold, sticky experience. I was completely uncomfortable, so I can’t blame any of the other contenders or Cameron for having a hard time with it.
Something seemed to go wrong in your recording session. What is your take on what happened in the booth?
I think it was the fact that I was given an excess of parts just because I won the homework assignment. When I told Nikki that I hadn’t practiced the part we were working on as much, I didn’t mean for it to come off as if I had slacked off or not practiced at all. I was trying to get across that there were other parts that I put a lot of time and energy into focusing on. We do really only have a night before we go and record, and I spent a lot of time on certain parts while others were overlooked unintentionally. It wasn’t that I hadn’t practiced. Unfortunately, the way that I had worded it, I can see how it came off poorly.
Were you surprised to end up in the bottom three, especially after winning the last two homework assignments?
It was surprising, but also embarrassing. There hadn’t been a homework winner in the bottom three yet, so I was shaking in my boots waiting to find out what I had done so wrong to be the first one.
What was your reaction to finding out that your last chance performance would be one of the songs you used to audition?
I was terrified. In a way, I did appreciate that they were letting us sing our audition song, only because we wouldn’t have to learn a whole other song in two hours. But also, I didn’t pick my song because it was easy, so I was worried about the state of my voice after the shoot and all the late night slushie-ing.
Have you stayed in touch with the other contestants since leaving the show?
It’s one of the saddest parts about leaving, leaving behind people you’ve become so close to and have grown to love. You can’t just forget that kind of family dynamic that comes from spending so much time together in such a stressful setting, so we’re all friends. I’m particularly friends with Emily, Alex and Hannah. I’ll never forget Alex’s face when he saw my name on the list. My family loves him, to say the least.
What was the most rewarding challenge for you in the competition?
As difficult as it was for me, the “Vulnerability” challenge changed my life. I’ve been so much closer now with the people that I love because it has broken down a barrier that was starting to form. It closed a distance between everyone that I care about. As hard as it was to do, I’m really grateful for it. What a huge way to come out with a personal struggle, in front of an entire nation! I’m glad it happened.
So what is next for you?
I don’t have any distinct plans at this point. I know that I want to continue in film and TV because the mentors did tell me that it was my medium. I’d like to continue singing and move out to LA as soon as I can. I’m just waiting to see what offers or opportunities I might get.
‘The Glee Project’ Exit Q&A: This week’s eliminated contestant says, ‘You fall and then you pick yourself up’
‘The Glee Project’ Exit Q&A: This week’s eliminated contestant says, ‘I know I did the best that I could’