SYTYCD Season 9 Top 20

19 07 2012

The All-New format of SYTYCD Season 9 made it’s debut last night.

If you’ve read my blog in the past, you’ll know that I have very little patience for ‘Elimination Shows’. The results could be read in 2 minutes, yet at times, we are forced to sit through a full HOUR of ‘fluff’ – yes, shameless movie and upcoming TV show promotions, oh look whose in the audience, D- list performances by people who are coincidentally releasing a new album or going on tour, commercial breaks, video montages, recaps of what we JUST saw the night before… DWTS has this inane format down to a Japanese war torturous tee.

Results shows are useless – and SYTYCD has just proven, that the performances and the results (plus a few shameless plugs for SYTYCD: The Movie… errr, Step Up something) can all fit together in a neatly compact, 2-hour package. Ground breaking television.

So all the dancers performed in pairs again this week – and the bottom 6 from last wee’s performances were picked from the bunch to face elimination at the hands of the judges. Democracy is overrated. America always makes the wrong decision in these situations, I’m perfectly happy to give that power back to the hands of the Sovereign judging panel.

Let’s talk about last night’s performances:

Cole/Lindsey – a Jazzy/Hip Hop number about a nerd going to the dentist. Who knew there would be a perfect song for that scenario. It was a SYTYCD kinda dance. Good characters, high energy, kinda goofy but technically very sound – great way to start the show! Um, you’ve heard of Twi-hards? Cole is a little bit of a ‘TRY-hard’, and I think he needs to snap out of it. Getting into character is one thing, pretending you are NOT in character, but that the character has embodied you is an entirely different and awkward viewing situation. I did not connect with him AFTER the dance, which means I wouldn’t necessary vote for him. The dance was good, his odd personality may have been a turn off.

Amelia and Will – performed the first Sonya Tayeh routine of the evening to perfection. Both dancers were salivating at the chance to work with such a unique and quirky choreographer (Mia Michaels who?) and they embraced that opportunity with every fibre. This pair is an early favourite. They both received a lot of help from the editing crew, giving them camera time during audition stages. They also have the ability to scale up or scale down their individual oddities. When the dance calls for it (like in last weeks performance) they can be borderline kooky… but when the dance calls for honesty and true technique, both can deliver.

Amber/Nick – Tango. Who drew the short straw? To make matters worse, Amber admitted in her pre-dance video that she was having trouble ‘connecting’ with her partner “Like oil and bubblegum”. Guess what? it showed. Amber out-danced her partner, and the routine was seriously lacking the tension or sizzle of a sexy tango. One last kick in the teeth? This was Nick’s genre. Ouch.

Time for another Sonya Tayeh routine…

Audrey and Matthew were human robots in love… or something. Anyways they were wearing a lot of make up, and the style of the dance was hard-hitting and less fluid than Sonya’s previous effort. If I have to be honest, I enjoyed her first piece far better. I didn’t really see the story line (if there was any) in this routine, and the dancers did not attack each move the way ti was probably intended. The judges liked it, but then, you should hear them talk about Step Up 4 (or whatever). I wasn’t a huge fan of this piece, I don’t know if it was the dancers or the choreography.

Janelle and Dareian- danced a lyrical Hip Hop routine to ‘My Girl’. It had SO much potential to be another SYTYCD classic. The clothes, the song, the characters. The judges were BANG on in my opinion. This routine lacked material. It was too simple, too academic… a let down for the dancers. There’s not much you can do to augment poor choreography. In fact, I think they knew it was sub-par, and tried to make the number more interesting by adding a smooch at the end. This would not have been a bad performance… on season 1. The level of dance has risen exponentially each season, and this dance didn’t cut it. BUT… I still enjoyed the refreshing simplicity of a cute song, cue clothes, and a cute story.

Janaya and Brandon – picked my favourite dance style from the board… Broadway! This Sean Cheeseman routine was EVERYTHING you want to see in a Broadway performance. A perfect blend of character, story and dance. These two danced this routine to perfection – both were strong in character and pulled off some tough choreography without breaking the illusion. This was the dance I wanted ‘My Girl’ to be.

Eliana and Glitch – were put to the test with a high-tempo Jive… a style Glitch has never encountered or studied. Shocker! It was not very quick, it was not very precise or snappy (the way I like to see my Jives). He has the capacity for it, I just think a week was not long enough to build confidence in his abilities, or to work his own style into the dance. The choreographers had Eliana dance AROUND him for the majority of the time, and gave him plenty of lifts to showcase strength over technique. Good move… he did not come across as completely out of his league.

Daniel and Alexa – Can I just make an observation about this couple? They look like the dance version of Emily and Sean on the Bachelorette. Non? C’mon, you totally see it now, right? In terms of a critique, I had a few issue with this piece. First, I think choreographers need to tone down the hair flipping, body flinging back and forth style that has become standard in contemporary routines. It gives me motion sickness… and in this piece, it went a little over board for me. Also, I had never warmed to Alexa, and I feel that she was once again a little bit ‘in her  head’ and not connecting with her partner or the audience.

Tiffany and George – Drew the shortest straw and were left with the Foxtrot. The dreaded foxtrot. how can you compete with kicks and flips and “genius” contemporary pieces with an out-dated, simple ballroom routine? Well, it is slightly novelty, which can help. Also, the judges will give out HIGH praise for a decent Foxtrot. If you can be successful in channeling Astaire/Rogers , and you look good in ballgowns and tails… you might just have a winner. Last night the judges gave ‘mad props’ to this pair for pulling off a classic ballroom routine. I was slightly underwhelmed.

Witney and Chehon – were given a very difficult task. Master Bollywood in a week. Give them a lot of credit, they both put in extra hours of research and practice to ensure accuracy. And they NAILED it! There is nothing better than watching a high energy, artfully crafted Bollywood routine. It has become one of my favourite styles. Russian dancing didn’t ‘catch’, but I hope Bollywood is here to stay! What a great way to end the show…

Oh wait! Shows not over…

Results!

Nigel assures us this is all about love, not war. Or something. Dancers are not ‘eliminated’ they are just not America’s favourite. Dancers aren’t voted ‘off’ they are voted to be kept ‘on’. Get it?

So the bottom 6 vote getters…

Girls: Janaya , Alexa  and Whitney 

Boys:  Chehon, Nick and Daniel.

Based on a collaboration between the choreographers and the judges, they chose to SAVE (love not war):

Whitney and Chehon

thoughts?

 

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SYTYCD Season 9: Top 20 Revealed!

28 06 2012

All in one show, we saw the results of Vegas week, met the Top 20,  marveled at the first group performances of the season, and had a guest judge appearance (Zooey Dechanelle). It was jam packed, and very well executed. In the past, shows have played with the format of determining the Top 20 (or Top 10…) and there have been some pretty strange variations on the ‘big reveal’. Remember a few seasons ago, the judges actually went house-hopping to all the contestants to tell them ‘yes’ or ‘no’? It was cruel and unusual punishment for both parties involved. How do you drive a thousand miles, and bring an entire camera crew into a home for the afternoon… just to sit on th couch and say ‘you havent made it’?! That was just plain painful to watch.

Well, Last night I believe the producers at SYTYCD have found a winning formula. The top 20 was selected (on tape) by genre. Then cut to a performance by those dancers, in their own style (designed by this seasons chosen choreographers). It is a showcase of their talents, and a celebration of making it to the Top 20. There was no criticism this week, nor is there a ‘vote’. It is simply the BEST way to give each dancer a moment in the spotlight to shine, before the hammer falls. Someone always has to ‘go’ first – but it is particularly bitter when you havent had any opportunity to engage an audience and campaign for a following. If you were one of the ‘highlighted’ stories, you’ve got a FAR better chance at making it through the first rounds of the vote…it’s simple logic. There are some faces in the Top 20… I dont recall seeing throughout the auditions or Vegas week. How is that possible? They have NO footage whatsoever of a person who has surpassed hundreds (nay thousands!) of other hopefuls to make the Top 20 dancers?! Really?! Is it because they didnt think they were good TV? It does them a disservice when it comes to voting. There are two blondes I’ve never seen before, a couple of brunettes that look the same to me… I will be voting for the flapper incarnate because I saw her dance every week!

I digress… it’s my right, this is my blog.

Overall,  I thought it was a highly entertaining evening – chalk full of fabulous routines playing to each dancers strength (before they are forced to perform WAY out of their genre competancies!).

Things I LOVE about the Top 20…

1. Ballet is back baby! Yep, this year there are 3 ballet dancers… and there’s nothing I love more than watching Da Vinci chiseled bodies fly through the air in perfect form. Usually, I’m chowing down on a guilty ‘after 8 pm’ snack and kicking myself for not going to the gym for the last 5 years (maybe I’ll start tomorrow). They are magnificent, and I love having their calibre of technique as part of this show.

2. The Girl/Guy split. New this season, Nigel has announced that there will be two winners… Best Girl, Best Guy. This elvels the playing field in my opinion. Consider the demographic (mostly female and begrudging husbands), and consider the results of seasons past… there’s a bit of a theme emerging (take note American Idol). The contestants that do very well in this competition are the good looking guys, who look great without a shirt and who can dance hip hop but blossom in contemporary (unter Mama Mia’s tutilage). If a girl wins, they look like Selena Gomez or one of her friends. My point is, no longer will the votes be one-sided based on gender. Apples to apples. I like this decision, and I’m very interested to see it all play out.

3.  Variety – there have been a few seasons that heavily favour one genre over the next. Ahem-contemporary… ahem-Hip Hop… This season has ballroom, ballet, contemporary, hip hop, jazz, even a bellydancer…

Looking forward to next week for the official start of competition – but after last night, I have very high hopes for a memorable season 9!

Thoughts?





SYTYCD: Top 6 August 3rd

4 08 2011

SYTYCD is easily on of my favourite competition shows, but it is also one of the hardest to watch as it gets closer to the finale (next week!). Hard to watch such talent be a) judged b) in competition and c) eliminated each week.

But still extremely entertaining every wednesday night!

So let’s get to it, the dances from last night:

Melanie – A Hip Hop with Twitch. I was not a huge fan of the song, or the choreography… but I was a huge fan of Melanie in this piece. She was powerful, controlled, meticulous… she is everything a dancer should be and more. I think she is an artist and a technician… putting work into the details, and giving it heart. So, I wasnt a fan of this piece, but I could watch Melanie for hours in any number.

Sasha – Contemporary/Jazz with Kent (a former favourite!). They used a wall to leap onto, pound against, make shadows etc. It was a beautiful piece, one of the best I’ve seen particularly from Tyce. These are two power-house dancers, and the piece was elevated because of their strength and emotional rawness. I loved it, Sasha has gotten stronger every week… I never wouldve expected form her audition, for her to be such a contender til the end. Now, it’s a two-woman competition with Melanie.

Marko– Paso Doble. Poor guy. His chances of making it into the finale hang int he balance…and he picks the Paso. Dont get me wrong, there have been a few Pasos that have given me chills. However, this was not one of those nights. Marko is a great dancer, probably still my favourite guy… but this was slow and lacked the density and intensity to make me pick up the phone.

Tadd– Contemporary. This was more of a Cirque du Soleil performance than a “dance”, at least for this stage of the game. I wouldve liked to see less dangling from a chandelier and more dancing, but that’s my opinion. I think Tadd it a darkhorse in this competition but I wasnt a huge fan of his first attempt last night.

Ricky– Contemporary. If you didnt already think that Ricky was a bit ‘wooden’ as a dancer, give him batons to twirl for an entire number and see how wooden he CAN get. The inability to use his hands was a disastor in my opinion. He lacked line and he lacked full movement. Not a grat combination. I get it , the concept was supposed to be him conducting with his batons…but it came across very laboured and awkward.

Caitlynn – Samba. She can definitely shake it, and her legs are insane. But I dont think this dance did her any favours either. She has been squeaking by every week. becuase the judges see her technique and promise…but the problem is, I don’t get anything from her. I dont get soul like I do Melanie or heart like I do Sasha. So giving her a Samba, a party dance, didnt do it for me on an emotional level.

Paired dances:

Sasha and Ricky: Wacking (?!). Guess who kept my attention the whole time? One guess. Pairing a strong dancer with a lesser partner only exaggerates the gap between them. Sasha was fierce, she attacked this dance the way she attacks every dance. Ricky felt like a DWTS ‘Star’… just trying to keep up and not mess up. Sorry, my opinion.

Melanie and Tadd– Broadway. O.M.G I think I just re-fell in love with Melanie again. Sorry, bare with me. This dacne was about a choreographer and his muse, and it was JUST liek watching a professional Broadway number. It was professional quality. These are not amateur dancers people, these are true professional artists. Melanie was flawless and totally embraced the character she was given. Tadd was brilliant also, you would never suspect he was a ‘untrained’ B-Boy.

Caitlynn and Marko -Jazz. A great lyrical piece about a woman trying desperately to leave a controlling man. Both dancers put their heart and soul into this piece, as if it were the last time. THAT is what dancing for your life looks like. I think Marko redeemed himself and gave himself a fighting chance for the finale. Caitlynn was the best I’ve seen of her, but too little too late?

Thoughts?





SYTYCD Top 8: July 27

28 07 2011

The Top 8 performed on last night’s SYTYCD, and now is the time when it starts to get very difficult for me.

I love these dancers, I love watching them every week. I wish the show wasnt a competition, I wish the premise was finding 8 amazing dancers and watching them dance with no one ever getting cut.

Last night’s show in particular, was probably one of the best 2-hours of competition TV i’ve seen…ever. It’s hard to watch THIS show and then transition into watching DWTS, because it doesnt compare.

Also, last night we were graced on the panel with Director of Chicago and Moulin Rouge, Rob Marshall and the… i-have-no-words-to-describe-her, Lady Gaga. She is the female version of a 1970’s Elton John no? Last night she was in a a Psychedelic Military Smurf get up. But honestly, i hang on every word she says. She has such a unique way of expressing herself and showing her feelings artistically. She was honest, and that’s all you can ask for.  Great panel.

Let’s get to the dancing! (each contestant had 2 dances)

Sasha-
dance 1: a quirky quickstep with Pasha. Beautiful, precise, charasmatic. The judges loved it and are starting the night off with ‘you’re my favourite dancer’…too soon?

Melanie-
dance 1: A contemporary with Neil, showing off her greatest strenghts. Her lines, he reckless abandon, her soul. She is a beautiful dancer and her passion for giving 100% and beyond is so evident in everything she does. She is by far, the most talented dancer of the bunch, and has never fallen from that position.

Caitlynn-
dance 1: Hip Hop – I wasnt a fan. She performed it ‘ok’, but as Gaga said, she really has to let go of her ‘this is a dance competition’ approach. She has never given me something to write home about or get excited for, and i feel like this dance was just medicre… she will get eaten alive by the rest of the dancers.

Jordan-
dance 1: Jazz with Ade. A great partnership, I loved seeing Ade again! I know Iknow, i am supposed to be watching Jordan. She has almost elastic legs, which makes her very interesting to observe – and probably a choreographers dream. Gaga loves her- i think more because of her confidence and overt sexuality.

Ricky-
dance 1: ballroom with Anja. This was a bit of a trainwreck for me. Again, Gaga said it right…it felt more DWTS than SYTYCD at times. Anja is such a strong female All-Star that Ricky looked like he was just treading water beside her brilliance. I think he showed his weakness in this competition, and could be in some danger tonight as a result.

Tadd-
dance 1: Jazz. A slick (or sick)  jazz number depicting two criminals doing a job. It was full of great character work, interesting MJ-esque moves and overall…it was just really cool. I’ve been saying all along that Tadd is a guy to watch, he is GREAT at what he does, and able to adapt to every dance thrown at him.

Jess-
dance 1: A lyrical Hip Hop a la Nappy Tabs. (just a question…are there any other hip hop choreographers who might be talented enough to give it a shot on this show? I mean…really.) It was a very nice story, and Jesse really put his heart and soul into it. Jesse has long been one of my favourite dancers, but i’m not sure he was given enough to WOW people this week.

Marko-
dance 1: Sonja contemporary. This dance saved the guys. Until this point, the girls had badly outshined the guys… but Marko’s dance was beautiful and raw. It brogh the panel to tears, and to make the water works worse, his mom came all the way from Guam to see him dance. Marko is the best male dancer in the Top 8, and I dont think he’ll have trouble making Top 6 (or 2).

Second dances-

Tadd/Caitlynn: Foxtrot. It was….nice. It was the least memorable dance of the evening, not much to say. I dont think it helps eith of them in their quest to make Top 6.

Ricky/Marko: Hip Hop. Watered down with all the props and gimicks… but still a pretty memorable dance for the two of them. They both danced it well, I dont think it will save Ricky from a bottom two spot.

Jordan/Jess: Rhumba.  Two totally different dancers, and the pairing just didnt work for me. I felt contrived and ‘this is a dance compteition piece’. There was no emotionall connection and even the choreography didnt really fit the song. Not a great way to end the night for either dancer.

Melanie/Sasha: A sonja contemporary with Melanie. The last dance of the night, and it brought the entire house to the floor. Unbelievable strength, power and dynamic performance form these two…it also brought upon the moment of the night: Gage Throwing her shoe as a sign of respect for the dance. And we can’t go without mentioning the shoe. It was a red leather, 12 inch heel. ’nuff said.





SYTYCD Top 10: July 20

21 07 2011

The Top 10 performed on last night’s SYTYCD… paired with All-Stars from the past, the dancers stepped it up this week and proved why they are in the running for America favourite dancer.

let’s face it, there isnt a BAD dancer in the bunch.

There isnt a weak dancer in the bunch.

So the decision will likely come down to who lands the best choreographer each week, who performs the heck out of the piece they are given, who makes the judges scream and hollar their praises, and who connects to the largest audience.

Hollywood’s Man for Every Event/Occasion Neil Patrick Harris joined the panel. Surprised? Me neither.

Let’s get to last night:

Starting with Marko– He was paired with Chelsea Hightower of DWTS fame, who started on this stage a few seasons ago. THey were given a fast, intricate and hip-defining Samba. Marko was in a great pairing with Melanie up til now, but tonight, he broke free and showed his strength as an individual. He is charasmatic, strong and puts 100% into every dance he’s given. He has a chance…watch out.

Jordan – paired with the perfect picture of dance,  Brandon. They were given contemporary, and Jordan was forced to grow up a bit to dance with such a strong partner. And she did. I have personality issues with this girl, but she CAN dance, and last night, she danced at the same level as her All-Star. She will be stretched in this competition, and it will be interesting to see if her youth impedes her art.

Caitlynn – and Pasha (swoon) took on a steamy, sultry, slow moving Tango. I’m with NPH, I never like the tango because it’s too slow, rarely has a storyline and can be hard to judge. This tango, however, I got. It was super sexy, there was intricate movement and passion between the two dancers. IT was great, great great. I still dont know, how the voting public will judge the performance, Tango is always less exciting than a Jive.

Tadd– shocker, got paired with Comfort for a Hip Hop routine. I would rather have seen Tadd jump into a Jive, Quickstep or Jazz routine… I feel like the reason he is a contender is because he puts his own style and energy into dances outside his genre. But he was definitely in his element here (a relief from previous weeks!) and delivered a strong Hip Hop performance.

Sasha – lucky girl, was paired with a perrennial favourite, Twitch. What a cute couple! This pairing was genius and the choreography was equally amazing. They did a throw back, old school Hip Hop as a couple in the 60’s (70’s?) who had fallen out of love. It was fun, bright, fresh and totally character driven – right int heir wheelhouse. Sasha is back on top after this performance…

Jesse – had an unbelievable solo, and was paired with Kathryn for a contemporary routine. Jesse is not a big strong dancer, he has the body of Gene Kelly… therefore the core strength and upper body abilities that a contemprary routine requires is a tough challenge. He was able to perform these moves and inject the passion he brings to every dance. He can do anything, but his forte lies in the performance-driven routines, so hopefully he’ll get on next week!

Melanie– paired up with Pasha pulling double duty tonight! Not that I mind. Melanie has been the leader of the talent pool all season long, and even after splitting from long time partner Marko, she proves that her talent is unstoppable and that she can shine as an individual. Their contemporary piece was stunning. Beautiful, and expertly performed. By far, she is the strongest dancer on the stage this season…that doesnt necesarily guarantee a win.

Mitchell- was parired up with Melody for a Tyce Jazz routine. It… was confusing. There was a ‘storyline’, but it wasnt evident. The choreography was all over the place, and he danced it with too much ‘try’…it came off insincere and forced. Not a great way to start the Top 10 journey for Mitchell, I think he’ll be a bottom dweller tonight.

Ricky – was paired with Alison for another Tyce Jazz routine. This one was better than the previous attempt, but I still didnt LOVE it. Ricky is a strong dancer, but I find I forget about him almost every week, and this piece didnt stand out for me either. He could be another bottom-dweller tonight.

Clarice– ended the show with a Bollywood joined by Robert. Question. Why would they give a Bollywood piece to this dancer, when everyone else basically got a routine in their element? It seems unfair! Also, as much as I like Bollywood for it’s excitement and flambuoyancy…I still find it hard to judge. It’s difficult to compare Bollywood to a Waltz or a contemporary for example. It was a great way to end the show though!

Thoughts?





SYTYCD: Top 12 July 13

14 07 2011

The Top 12 had their last dances as partners on last night’s SYTYCD.

Bitter sweet. Because some pairs have absolutley blossomed together, yet the time has come to see each dancer as an individual.

So let’s get to last night’s dances (plural…they danced two numbers each). Joining the panel this week was Modern Family’s Jesse Tyler Ferguson. He was amped up. Like super fanned out. It was at times a bit…much. But nice to have a true watcher of the show on hand.

Alexander and Sasha: were originally one of my favourite pairs, but have recently lossed connection with the audience. This may change once the pairs are split, because I think Sasha has the true star potential, where Alexander may be the weak link. Last night they danced a controlled, powerful Paso that had the judges giving luke warm praise. Their second dance was a Jazz number to ‘That’s Life’ that was more in their element, and received better judgement. They could be in some trouble tonight, just a hunch.

Tadd and Jordan: I’m not sure who the bigger star is in this group, but I tend to think Tadd might be the one with the most potential to ‘shock and awe’ as the weeks go on. Last night, they hit the jackpot with a Travis Wall piece about a vulture. It was dark, quirky, and Travis-Wall-esque. Judges raved (no way). Their second dance however, was a mess. I think it was a Broadway number, I think, but the costuming was a dog’s breakfast and so was the choreography. Not a great way to finish for the pair.

Ryan and Ricky: I don’t know what to say. Ryan has the credentials of a fantastic dancer, and all the right stuff to be a contender, yet….I’m getting nothing. Last night they couldve absolutely KILLED a Broadway routine based on Breakfast at Tiffanys…but it fell flat. Then they had a Cha Cha that only Ricky showed up for. Strange, and spending the past 2 weeks in the bottom, I’m not the only one who feels this way.

Caitlynn and Mitchell: Are a strong pair, but often have forgettable dances. It will be good to see these two apart for the audience to connect to each of them as individuals. Their first dance a was a Hip Hop dance with a social awareness moral. It didnt come across very well, it looked un rehearsed and the meaning was not delivered. Not sure if it was the choreography or the dancers. They turned it around in their second piece, arguably the sexiest dance all season (tame compared to SYTYCD Canada…just sayin) Caitlynn rocked a garter and stockings like nobodys business.

Melanie and Marko: Here’s a pairing that was made in Heaven. The two of them have ying/yanged eachother from the very first show, and it will be sad to lose that chemistry. Their first dance was a Louis van Amstel (DWTS crossover) Tango. It was fast, rhythmic, and OMG the ending! There was a move I’ve never seen in my life… a flip under the legs and back into a final pose. Unreal. Their final piece was also a knockout, a contemporary. It was stunning, beautiful and understated. Probably the dance of the night.

Jesse and Charise: Another one of my favourite pairs that will be a shame to break apart. They are such a dynamic duo. Last night, they danced a lyrical hip hop about a girls insecurites. Jess turned into a B-Boy, and Charise was beautiful. IT worked way better than I thought! Their last dance was a high flying, fast-tempo Jive… and do you think Jesse tore it up? Oh yes, he did. This kid has such a career in Broadway, in his element and Charise has kept up with his energy all the way through.

A great show last night, I was thoroughly entertained. Next week, some all-stars join the Top 10 dancers…and it’s every man for himself now!





SYTYCD: Top 14 July 6

7 07 2011

The Top 14 performed on last night’s SYTYCD.

The judges panel switched it up yet AGAIN adding a new ‘face’ Carmen Electra (with marginal association with dance) and an ‘old face’ in Travis Wall, a graduate of the SYTYCD program.

Why was Carmen Electra there? Seriously, I’m asking. The only reason I can think of in my ever-scheming TV-critical mind is that for some odd reason this season, Nigel has partnered with the Pussy Cat dolls. You’ll remember, the PCD ‘producer’ was on hand at a few audition stages…I was confused THEN! Carmen made it very clear that she was also a member, therefore giving her the right to sit on the panel. I’m still not putting two-and-two together on this one…I dont see the connection.

Back to last night

The first dance of the evening was a group dance – an all-boy contemporary. It was beautiful, and showed off the strengths of this year’s guys. It also gave another choreographer a chance to show HIS stuff… great piece. Don’t you find, with the absence of Mia Michaels, it opens the door for fresh choreographic talent to shine? Just saying…

Melanie and Marko started the night of competition on a seriously high note. I don’t think there is a stronger pair at this stage, they are both powerhouses that are breezing through new routines. The judges of course, had the same sentiment. It’s ridiculous how great such young dancers can be…

Sasha and Alexander were next with a Hip Hop routine that WASNT a NappyTabs. It did not go well. It was uneventful, it was soft, and it did not fit into their strengths as a couple. For some reason, there was a lack of connection to the piece. The judges called them out for it, and in a small way, embarassed the new choreographers for putting together something ‘rudimentary’.

Jordan and Tadd danced an etherial ballroom number – and as much as I don’t LOVE Jordan as a personality, she and Tadd danced very well last night. Tadd is someone to watch, he is a B-Boy who filled the role of a male ballroom dancer to a tee last night… incredible ability to adapt and learn.

Jess and Clarice were next with a hard hitting, contemporary piece. It was filled with sharp, staccato movements and great connection between the dancers. This is another very strong pairing, able to adapt from style to style. They both have grea personalities, and the judges said this was their best dance to date.

Ashley and Chris tried to pull off a ballroom, but were too far out of their elements. The judges gave them a luke warm response and review, it wasnt bad…but it wasnt the dance of the night.

Ryan and Ricky are also an impressive pair. We also learn that Ryan is close friends/student of Mia Michaels (the goddess of dance) so no wonder she has gone this route. They danced a jazz routine about fashion zombies?!?! It was exactly how it sounds, odd, unique, full of character.

Caitlynn and Mitchell got the ‘dance of the night’ card from the judges for their Mandy Moore piece. It was definitely strong, beautifully choreographed and emotional. Mary was screaming, the whole panel was crying… it was one of those moments.

The final dance of the night was the girls piece. We all know by now, that the girls are really showing up this season… and this dance proved it. The talent is electric, and the choreographers are LOVING it… yes, there is a strong female contingent this season.

Thoughts?

Who were the dances of the night for you? Who will be in the bottom? Why the heck was Carmen Electra on the panel?








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