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The Academy: Day 3 and 4

It’s the final rounds of the Academy and by the end of the episode the top 10 will be revealed. I’ve said it before but I am so glad I don’t have to make the decision that the All-Stars do.

A NappyTabs hip hop was up next and they had an hour to learn this very fun choreography. Not sure why hip hop got an hour and the other style got an hour and a half rehearsal time. Tabitha and Napoleon were impressed by the talent of the next generation. Most of the kids were impressive, I thought. Comfort was having a difficult time with this round of cuts, so she has Phoenix and Logan dance for their lives.

Contemporary with Travis Wall was next and an hour and a half to learn it. Travis didn’t hold back and the kids went for it. I thought that the All-Stars got their chance to show why they were chosen to mentor these kids. I thought they all gave great advice, especially Joshua in telling his team to use their hip hop experience in the contemporary round. I thought all of the contestants were impressive and the All-Stars were moved, Jenna seemed the most emotional. This was the round the struggle of making the decision was really starting to show on the All-Stars faces.

Before the All-Stars made their final decision on who would be joining them in the top 10, they had a one on one talk with each of their final two contestants. This is when I decided to play the guessing game of who I thought they’d pick. 5 out of 10 I guess correctly. So here is your top 10.

Kathryn and Tate
Sasha and Jordan
Fik-Shun and Kida
Jenna and Jake
Joshua and Sheaden
Robert and JT
Paul and Ruby
Gaby and Emma
Jonathan and Daniela
Comfort and Tahani

Since it will be two weeks till the live shows, I post my thoughts on the top 10 next week. Also a post with the National Dance Day routine.

June 27, 2016 I Written By

Dance is one of my biggest passions. I grew up dancing at Augusta West Dance Studio (the same studio that Kathryn McCormick). I have a BFA in theatre/dance from Valdosta State University. Tap is my favorite style of dance.

The Academy: Day Two

Day two of the Academy and it’s time to learn a tough Broadway routine from Tony Award winning choreographer Warren Carlyle. The dancer have 90 minutes to learn the routine before having to perform it for the All-Stars. While they are learning the choreography the All-Stars and Maddie are there to help them and give them advice.

They pair off the dancer in groups of two and perform. Then comes the hard part, having to eliminate on of dancers from each team. I can’t help but think that Nigel, Paula, and Jason are happy that they don’t have to do this part. There were a few standouts that I saw in the montage that we saw. Also, love how supportive the All-Stars are and cheering the dancers on. In end we had to say goodbye to, Enoch, Diana, Pullany, Lera, Parker, Ava, Kai, and Jaryan. Didn’t catch who was eliminated from Kathryn and Comfort’s team.

It was the end of the Episode that both broke my heart and warmed it at the same time. Jaryan was unfortunately cut from Fik-Shun’s team and he broke down in tears and proceeded to say he has been bullied. I have to say Fik-Shun handled that so well by tell Jaryan that “we don’t bully in dance”, the rest of the contestants surrounded him and proceeded to lift his spirits. If there is one thing I know bullying is not OK and the theatre and dance community is the most accepting groups of people out there.

Next week is hip hop with NappyTabs and contemporary with Travis Wall.

June 20, 2016 I Written By

Dance is one of my biggest passions. I grew up dancing at Augusta West Dance Studio (the same studio that Kathryn McCormick). I have a BFA in theatre/dance from Valdosta State University. Tap is my favorite style of dance.

The Academy: Day One

First off now I am starting to see why the two hour shows are beneficial. These one hour shows are jammed packed with a lot of information and it is hard to catch everything the first time I watch the episode. So recording them so I can pause to take notes and make sure I spell the contestants names correctly. Loved the opening with the All-Stars, Maddie, and some familiar music.

Nigel and the rest of the judges get to take a break and it is up to the All-Stars to form their team of five (at least 3 in their style and 2 wild cards) and eliminate the dancers round by round till they are left with the one dancer that they will be performing with for the remainder of the season.

Before the All-Stars pick their team each of the 100 dancers get to impress them with their solo. We only got to see a few of the solos and Tate had the All-Stars impressed. So did many of the others. Each of the 50 dancers were called to the stage and the All-Star who picked them were lit up. If there was more than one lit up then it was up to the dancer to decide what team that they would like to be on. Kind of a SYTYCD meets the Voice.

TEAMS
Kathryn: Tate, Brooklin, Brightyn, Quinn, and Avery
Robert: Sage, JT, Gavin, Enoch, and Joziah
Sasha: Diana, Jade, Ashley, Bostyn, and Jordan
Jonathan: Daniela, Pullany, Victoria, Rylee, and Camila
Paul: Ruby, Shelly, Lera, Sophia, and Lennox
Jenna: Jake, Lev, Joshua, Parker, and Dougie
Gaby: Emma, Jazzy, Ryan, Ava, and Lucas
Fik-Shun: Kida, Jaryan, JJ, Lior, and Alex
Joshua: Merrik, Romeo, Tre, Sheaden, and Kai
Comfort: Tahani, Aniyah, Fiona, Logan, and Pheonix

Fun Facts: Rylee is Lindsey Arnold’s little sister. Phoenix danced with Cyrus on last season’s finale and was a sort of the inspiration for the concept this season.

Sad to see the other 50 go but hopefully we will see them back or at least I hope they continue dancing.

I Written By

Dance is one of my biggest passions. I grew up dancing at Augusta West Dance Studio (the same studio that Kathryn McCormick). I have a BFA in theatre/dance from Valdosta State University. Tap is my favorite style of dance.

All Stars for The Next Generation

The Academy starts next week and the All Stars are introduced. Also, Maddie from Dance Moms is introduced as on of the judges. Each of the 100 dancers get a chance to audition for the All Stars. Each All Star has to pick five dancers to be on their team and mentor them throughout the week. Eventually, they have to narrow it down to one dancer that they will be dancing with during the entire competition. I’m sure the details will be a little clearer next week. Until then here are the All Stars for Season 13.

Joshua Allen: Winner of season 4. Happy to seem him back as an all-star. I’m sure many will ask why not Twitch and while I don’t know that answer but I think he will enjoy the time to spend with his family.

Comfort Fedoke: Another season 4 alum who I have enjoyed watching grow into an even better dancer.

Jonathan Platero: I’ll admit I had to look up to see what season he was on. He was on season 5 and was eliminated in the third week. Jonathan has choreographed for the show the last few seasons.

Kathryn McCormick: Season 6’s top finishing female dancer. Yes…she’s still my favorite.

Robert Roldan: Season 7, Robert is one of my favorite guys to compete on the show and I still get tears in my eyes whenever I watch “Medicine” the dance he did with Tucker in season 10.

Sasha Mallory: Season 8 runner-up. I want to say this is her first time being an all-star.

Fik-Shun Stegall: Season 10 co-champion with Amy. He has always been a fan favorite and I think he will work well with the younger dancers.

Jenna Johnson: Jenna was the Judge’s favorite of season 10. For whatever reason I couldn’t connect with her…until she dance with Mark. Now I love watching Jenna dance on DWTS as a troupe member.

Paul Karmiryan: While he placed 6th on season 10, he won the Armenian version of the show before competing in the States.

Gaby Diaz: The reigning champion on SYTYCD and the first tap dancer to win the show.

June 13, 2016 I Written By

Dance is one of my biggest passions. I grew up dancing at Augusta West Dance Studio (the same studio that Kathryn McCormick). I have a BFA in theatre/dance from Valdosta State University. Tap is my favorite style of dance.

New York Auditions

The New York auditions in the past have always had a lot of talent and it is no different this season. Plenty of young talent in many genres of dance. I love watching Cat interview the contestants, she has always been great with the contestants but the kids bring out something different in her. Plus they started the audition process not long after she had her son.

RJ 11 and Jake 12: Hip Hop, When they said Magic Mike, I think my reaction was much like Cat’s. A great duo of brothers, looking forward to seeing what else they can do. I think RJ was the stronger of the two.

Ruby 12: Ballroom; I loved her interview about her family. Her audition was equally enjoyable. Personally watch her dad do the dance with her while he was sitting was great. So glad Nigel got him up to dance with her. Seems like next week she is torn between the two guy ballroom All Stars…can’t say I blame her.

Tate 12: Without a doubt she is an early favorite of mine. All of the training she gets from the Ballet school plus the additional training has paid off. Nigel is right that the All Stars will be fighting to have her on their team. Her solo at the academy has been previewed on social media and she does this move and the All Stars lose the minds.

Valeriya 10 and Alex 11: Ballroom; I love the young ballroom dancers. Especially watching them nail the footwork.

Lucas 13: Tap; He’s a smart guy already knowing that girls love guys that can dance. Also, why he enjoys tap is a great answer too. Lucas could easily keep up with the other tappers that had been on the show. I would pair him up with Zach from season 11 if he was going to be a part of the show.

Liza 9 and Joshua 12: Ballroom; Another cute couple. It was a bittersweet audition in that Joshua made it through and Liza did not.

Kia 12: Our first b-boy and he’s even a part of a crew. His crew members have taught him well and loved that they got to dance with him.

Dougie 11: Love that Cat was willing to let him show off his wrestling moves. Dougie is a great performer however, his technique is quite there just yet. Something I pointed out to my mom before the judges did. Glad they are giving him the chance to go to the academy and hopefully grow as a dancer.

Olivia 12: Another contemporary girl with great technique and legs for days.

Let me know your thoughts so far? Do you have a favorite yet? The All Star post will be up next.

I Written By

Dance is one of my biggest passions. I grew up dancing at Augusta West Dance Studio (the same studio that Kathryn McCormick). I have a BFA in theatre/dance from Valdosta State University. Tap is my favorite style of dance.

Chicago Auditions Thoughts

I have to admit I like the hour long audition shows compared to the two hour shows. Everything seems to move quicker and with LA, Chicago, and New York being the only stops, it makes sense that the show is only an hour. Also, I like that the parents and other family members are seated on the stage to support the dancer. The montage of family interviews and dynamics are cure.

This weekend I was lucky enough to be around some talented young dancers at a local dance studio’s annual recital. Between that and tonight’s episode it is evident to me that technique, flexibility, and discipline can be taught at a young age. Flexibility in particular is something that is best started at an early age. I watch these auditions and thinks some of these dancers have rubber bands for muscles.

Here are some of the dancers that I liked tonight.

Emma 10: Tap, Those were some clean, crisp and fast moving taps. I honestly think she could keep up with some of the other tap dancers that have been on the show in the past. Emma is like younger version of Gaby Diaz (Season 12 winner)

Leanna 10: Ballroom. I love seeing the young ballroom dancers do the jive, since they have the energy for it. I also hope this is what we might see when the top ten get to dance with the All Stars. Something that is appropriate for the situation.

Ainsley 8: She may not have gotten a ticket to the Academy but she was just too cute. Plus that face she made when she was told she might have to dance with BOYS…haha.

Daniela: Ballroom, Ballroom solos are hard but Daniela took the opportunity to show that she is also trained in some other styles. The saying like Mother, like Daughter is true for her and her mom.

I you missed any of the auditions or want to rematch them subscribe to the SYTYCD youtube page

http://fox.tv/SubscribeSYTYCD

June 6, 2016 I Written By

Dance is one of my biggest passions. I grew up dancing at Augusta West Dance Studio (the same studio that Kathryn McCormick). I have a BFA in theatre/dance from Valdosta State University. Tap is my favorite style of dance.

SYTYCD: The Next Generation LA Auditions

There is a lot of young talent out there and honestly I’m glad that SYTYCD has decided to share it with us. First off I enjoyed the new intro for the show, but still missed the so you think you can dance at end. How else am I supposed to know when the show is starting or back from commercial.

Los Angeles is the first stop on the audition process. Like before the dancers perform in front of the judges to move on to the next round. So instead of a ticket to Vegas, they get a ticket to the Academy. I’m not sure what exactly what the academy will be like but I have an idea. Then the All Stars have the task of picking who will be on their team.

I can honestly say that these kids have impressed me…lots of talent in many genres of dance. Their personalities are great too and add in embarrassing parents usually leads to entertainment.

Hard to pick out a favorite just yet, but I did enjoy the ballroom dancer Lev and the tap dancer Ava.

May 30, 2016 I Written By

Dance is one of my biggest passions. I grew up dancing at Augusta West Dance Studio (the same studio that Kathryn McCormick). I have a BFA in theatre/dance from Valdosta State University. Tap is my favorite style of dance.

SYTYCD Season 13…Starts Tonight!

SYTYCD: The Next Generation is then new title for season 13. This season is all about the young dancers between the age 8-13 competing for the title of America’s favorite dancer. Can’t say I’m surprised by the format change and from what I’ve seen on social media so far it hasn’t received good feedback yet. I’m choosing to be open minded and look forward to seeing what the Next Generation has to offer. Something tells me we are in for a surprise. Nigel, Paula, and Jason are back at the judges panel and Maddie Ziegler from Dance Moms will also be a judge during the live shows.

Look for my initial thoughts later and the full list of All-Stars that will be participating in this season.

I Written By

Dance is one of my biggest passions. I grew up dancing at Augusta West Dance Studio (the same studio that Kathryn McCormick). I have a BFA in theatre/dance from Valdosta State University. Tap is my favorite style of dance.

Witney Carson & Chehon Wespi-Tschopp Star in New Dance Movie

Had it not been for Witney instagraming a photo from the premier of her movie “Dancin it’s On” I may not have know about it. The movie also stars fellow Season 9 SYTYCD alum and winner, Chehon Wespi-Tschopp. Let’s not forget that Witney and Chehon were also partner’s on Season 9, so the chemistry was already established before the movie. The plot line of the movie seems typical of a dance movie but as a fan of dance I’ll most likely check it out. The Movie hits theaters on October 30th. While Witney and Chehon are the stars, there are a few other SYTYCD alum in the film, Comfort Fedoke (Season 4), Tadd Gadduang (Season 8), Russell Ferguson (Season 6 winner), and Brandon Bryant (Season 5).

Thanks to my babe @dance11brooklyn for supporting at my premiere of Dancin' It's On! In theaters Oct. 30th 👍🏼

A photo posted by Witney Carson (@witneycarson) on

October 24, 2015 I Written By

Dance is one of my biggest passions. I grew up dancing at Augusta West Dance Studio (the same studio that Kathryn McCormick). I have a BFA in theatre/dance from Valdosta State University. Tap is my favorite style of dance.

The Winner Is…Finale Thoughts

Stop reading now if you don’t like spoilers.

A great way to start the finale with the Top 10 and the All Stars. Love the Astrology theme of the dance.

A huge congratulations to Travis Wall on his Emmy win. How special that Cat was able to present that to him. Also, congrats to Derek and Julianne Hough and Tessandra for their Emmy win as well.

Jason’s Pick: Vigil and Joshua: The energy alone in this dance makes me want to get up and move. It was better this time around when it came to timing, which is normal when the pressure is off.

Paula’s Pick: Edson and Megz: Great pick, this was a standout routine for these two. Looking forward to seeing this one on the tour.

Paula’s Pick 2: Jaja and Ricky: Paula is like me…it’s hard to pick just one favorite. I love the actress that Jaja is…so expressive. Ricky kills me (in a good way) with those leg extensions…so good.

Cat’s Pick: Team Street: If you didn’t notice this was just the replay…or else Jaja had one heck of a quick change. I enjoy watching the strength of this team.

Twitch’s Pick: Gaby and Neptune: I don’t know if I can say that I am surprised that Twitch picked a stage routine for his favorite. This was a beautiful routine by Stacey Tookey and a great moment for Neptune. Beautifully danced by both dancers.

Nigel’s Pick: Lil’ Pheonix and Cyrus: So glad that Nigel shared this cute routine from the Dizzy Feet Gala. Love getting to see talented kids dance.

Hailee’s Pick: Jazz with Robert: I can’t blame her for picking this as her favorite dance of the season. I agree…who would want to dance with Robert and even get the chance to kiss him.

Travis’s Pick: Gaby and Joshua: He picks a street routine. This was one of many breakout moments for Gaby. It’s been so great to see Josh this season.

Jason’s Pick 2: Travis’s Ghost Light routine: This was one of my favorite group routines too.

Virgil’s Pick: Robot routine with Hailee: Still a fun routine that showed of their characters just as much as their dance skills.

Nigel’s Pick 2: Jim and Alex: Requested by the audience and I’m so glad that they listened. Absolutely beautiful routine that will no doubt earn Travis another Emmy nomination.

Results: Top Team Stage is Gaby

Nigel’s Pick 3: Jaja and Alex: Agree with everything Nigel had to say about this routine.

Travis Wall and Jenna Dewan-Tatum: Again I am happy that they shared this number from the Dizzy Feet Gala. So good to see Jenna dance again and hopefully there might be another chance to see her dance with her husband Channing.

Results: Top Team Street is Jaja

Jaja’s Pick: Hip Hop with Jim: This routine reminds me why I love Chris Scott. Such a great dance for both Jim and Jaja.

Gaby’s Pick: Contemporary with Robert: This was hands down the best routine of the entire season, beautiful choreography by Mandy Moore.

Before we get to the winner, I just want to say that both of these girls have been my favorites from the beginning and the both could easily win.

The Winner is…Gaby Diaz!

Will there be a season 13? I don’t know yet but I’ll will post as soon as it’s announced.

 

 

 

September 14, 2015 I Written By

Dance is one of my biggest passions. I grew up dancing at Augusta West Dance Studio (the same studio that Kathryn McCormick). I have a BFA in theatre/dance from Valdosta State University. Tap is my favorite style of dance.