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Next Generation Top 6: Thoughts

So now that the Olympics are over we can get back to the competition. I honestly think that the remaining dancers are all fantastic and it’s really hard to pick just one that will win. This week we got to see them dance with their all-stars and paired with each other.

Each of the next generation dancers shine when they are dancing with their all-stars. I feel like three of them stood out the most. Ruby, JT, and Emma.

Ruby: She has probably the most infectious personality and the Jive was the perfect way to show it off. Love seeing Mark Ballas choreographing for SYTYCD again and loved that Ruby teased him about  his man bun. Only critique I have is that maybe Paul could have channeled Mark just a little bit more.

JT: This routine choreographed by Al Blackstone might have been my favorite so far that JT and Robert have done together. I can’t help but to smile watching these two together. I do think that JT is slowly turning into Roberts mini me…saw that in his solo. Maddie said it the best, that this dance also  explains what this show has been about.

Emma: I’m consistently blown away by her tap skills. It was so great to see Nick Young from season 8 choreographing for the show. SpecTAPular! Thanks Paula for that new word to add to my vocabulary.

Now on to the Next Generation pairings and I think I’ll rank these.

  1. Tate and Kida: Mark again delivers another great routine. I think he turned Kida and Tate into ballroom dancers, they both did a great job. I will probably watch this Paso again and again.
  2. Tahani and Ruby: While this broadway routine was a little bit lack luster for Nigel, I enjoyed it. I really enjoyed the simplicity of the routine and thought that Ruby and Tahani performed it well.
  3. JT and Emma: I really like what Travis brought out in these two. They seemed to have a more maturity to their dancing. However, I think that there is still few things that they still needs to work on.

Unfortunately someone had to leave and Ruby was the one that had the least amount of votes. Sad to see her go but I think she will have a great dance future.

Next week will be the shows 250th show and the Next Generation is taking over the choreographing jobs. I’m not sure about this idea but if they all-stars are allowed to help then it may work. Plus a special performance from Travis Wall and Maddie.

 

August 22, 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.

Next Generation: Top 8 thoughts.

Tonight the top 8 become the top 6…that means there is a dreaded double elimination (the bottom two will go home). To add to this bit of information Cat also said that the show will be taking a two-week break. If I had to guess they are taking the break so that won’t have to compete with the Summer Olympics.

Each contestant had two dances tonight, one with their all-star and one where they were paired off with each other. I’ll be the first to admit that it is kind of hard to critique the dancers when they are dancing with their all-star and in their comfort zone. Each of the top 8 shined in their own style tonight. Emma really stands out when it comes to tap…she is a pro and makes something that is incredibly hard to learn look easy.
When they paired off with each other to take on a dance outside of their specialty, I feel like we saw a few weaknesses start to show. So here’s how I would rank them.

  1. Emma and Tate: Broadway It was a cute routine despite the fact they were supposed to be trouble makers. I feel like these two were the best of the night in technique and performance.
  2. Kida and Ruby: Contemporary I already knew Ruby would be fine taking on contemporary, but I was looking forward to seeing Kida dance. I’m really enjoying watching Kida grow throughout the competition. All he needs is just a little fine tuning (so to speak) and he could make it into the top 3 or 4.
  3. Tahani and JT: Cha-Cha- They both were outside of their style but I thought they managed to pull it off. I didn’t feel like it was uncomfortable to watch like Nigel stated. I give Emma and Sasha major credit for teaching these two.
  4. Jordan and Jake: Hip hop- I thought that these two gave it their all but something just fell flat for me…just couldn’t get into it. They did have that one trick that stood out.

I’ve never really like double eliminations but some how I dislike them even more now when it involves these kids. Unfortunately Jordan and Jake landed in the bottom two and were eliminated from the competition. I’m really going to miss Jake, I thought he would have at least made it to the top 6. So with that I hope the dancers are able to get a little bit of rest in the next two weeks and come back stronger.

August 1, 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.

Next Generation: Top 9 Thoughts

So this week the dancers are back dancing with their all-stars in their own styles. I think I’m starting see the pattern of how the show will go from week to week. Great opening number choreographed by Brian Friedman to Meghan Trainor’s “Me Too”. On a side note did not know that Jason Derulo wrote that song.

Jake and Jenna: (Samba) Always good to see Dmitry back on the show. I think he found the way to work around the height difference. I also liked seeing Jenna helping Jake with the steps he didn’t know yet. Overall it was a fantastic performance.

Tate and Kathryn: (Contemporary) I’m really loving Brian Friedman’s choreography tonight. This piece was stunning and so are the dancers. My only complaint was maybe they went a little overboard with the smoke machine. I agree with the judges Tate is the best technical dancer on the show.

Kida and FikShun: (Hip hop) Dave Scott hit the jack pot with these two. Loved the concept of this dance. The make up department out did themselves, Kida really did look like a puppet.

Jordan and Sasha: (Jazz) This was definitely a fun piece and boy was it jam-packed with a lot of fast moves. They did fall out of sync a few times but no other real issue.

Sheaden and Marko: (Hip hop) I think Sheaden proved why he was picked to be on the show. I also think this truly allowed him to show off his personality.

Ruby and Paul: (Argentine Tango) Pretty sure that Paul had bruises all over his legs. Loved that the piece had a lighter feel compared to the usually darker feel I’m used to seeing. After watching the performance I would have never had guessed that Ruby has never really done the Argentine Tango.

Tahani and Comfort: (Dance Hall) It’s always good to see new style on SYTYTCD. Just hard to judge…I thought it looked good.

JT and Robert: (Contemporary) Seriously, Travis Wall will have another Emmy nomination next year. My favorite of the night. It is so nice to see JT slowly breaking out of the “cute kid” role.

Emma and Gaby: (Tap) Like Nigel, I really enjoy being about to see tap on the show every week. There is no denying the fact that Emma is a fantastic tap dancer.

The bottom two tonight were Sheaden and Ruby. This is just going to get harder every week to watch these kids get eliminated. I did agree with the judges that Sheaden would be in 9th place. I have a feeling we might see Ruby in the bottom next week.

July 25, 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.

Next Generation Live Show 2: Thoughts

Before I could watch tonight’s show, I to catch up on last weeks episode that I missed while I was out-of-town. I have to say I’m impressed not only by the talent but also the work ethic of these kids. Twitch stepped in as a judge since Jason out-of-town. After that fabulous opening number, we learn that each of the dancers were paired up and would perform two dances together, not to mention a small duet with their all-star.

I loved the small duets with the all-stars. I do think Jake and Jenna had the best and quite possibly the cutest one. Kida and Fikshun were a close second. Something I noticed in the last episode and tonight’s that the all-stars (with the exception of the ballroom) seem to pick their mini me’s.

Jordan & Ruby: Afro Jazz and Contemporary
I thought both dances were great. Their contemporary was my favorite of the two dances. I did enjoy Jordan’s reaction when the judges mentioned that the afro jazz was a difficult routine.

JT & Emma: Hip Hop and Broadway
These two made a cute pairing. It was fun to see them working with NappyTabs and I like the candy theme. I think JT just needs a little bit of tweaking when it comes to hip hop.

Tahani & Jake: Contemporary and Jive
I’m glad that they were able to capture the emotion of the choreography they were given. They both seemed genuinely moved by it. Then there was that Jive, that was high energy and so much fun. It allowed them to show off their personalities. Fingers crossed will see more choreography from Emma and Sasha.

Tate & Kida: Hip Hop and Jazz
There isn’t much to say about these two other than they are my top two of the night. Also, Nappy Tabs may have created my new favorite routine of theirs with great props.

Sheaden & Daniela: Cha-Cha and Broadway
I thought they had a good night and that we got to see Daniela shine a little bit more this week than last week. I enjoyed their broadway routine and Fosse is a hard style to learn. Unfortunately, they were also the bottom two dancers.
The judges decided that they would keep Sheaden. It’s a tough decision to make but I will say this about the judges, I think they handle the critiques and letting these kids down easily very well.

July 18, 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 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.