Free SYTYCD Newsletter Want to receive the latest news on So You Think You Can Dance sent straight to your email? Join hundreds of other SYTYCD fans who subscribe to Pure SYTYCD for FREE!

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.

Top 14 to Top 10: Thoughts

After last weeks episode, it’s not really surprising the tonight’s show was a bit of a let down, with a few bright spots. First bombshell of the night is the fact that there is a double elimination. The second was the fact that Jim was injured, before Cat said he was cleared to dance in his duet, I honestly thought oh no I hope he didn’t pull an Alex. The music for the opening number took me back to my days in dance class. That song was a staple in dance class so thank you Brian Friedman for that trip down memory lane.

1) Jim & Yurelis: Sonya
Happy to have Sonya back. This was one of those dances where the concept was kind of lost on me but I was still fantastic to watch. So nice to see Yurelis using her contemporary dance skills. Agreed with the fact if you took a picture that you have a picture of a great pose.

2) Edson & Jaja: Misha Gabriel
I loved what Misha came up with and I agree with Paula that is was fun and funky. The only thing that I can think of that may have made it a little better is maybe it could have been a bit cleaner/sharper.

3) Virgil & Hailee: Tyce Diorio
These two knocked it out of the park again. Tyce managed to bring out more of a darkish from these two…even himself for that matter. This might be my favorite Tyce routine ever.

4) Alexia & Ariana: Tracy Phillips & Dominic Carbone
So this was a Jazzy Burlesque? I think that the choreographers maybe should have gone the fun flirty route and this might have been a little bit better. So thankful that Paula found a positive way to give these girls a critique.

5) Derek & Megz: Dave Scott
This was one of those dances that it was good but it wasn’t great. I guess I was thinking that they may have dressed Megz a little more feminine, she looked great regardless. I didn’t think that costume fit the dance, thought that the costume department should have went a little more fun and flirty…like a skirt.

6) Gaby & Neptune: Stacey Tookey
Seriously Stacey does it again. My other favorite of the night and the reason Neptune got the Twitter save.

7) Kate & JJ: Brian Friedman
This might have been better as a group routine, but I thought the girls did a great job. Nice to see Kate’s personality breakthrough tonight.

Bottom 6: Derek, Alexia, Kate, Yurelis, Ariana, and Neptune

The Twitter Save went to the two boys Derek and Neptune.

Next week the All Stars return!

August 10, 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.

Top 16 to Top 14 Thoughts

In my opinion, tonight’s show was pretty good from start to finish. There was also an injury that happened this week. Derek strained a muscle in his back and was advised not to dance this week. Also, Team Street is catching up to Team Stage when it comes to the percentage of votes, it was almost 50-50 this week.

1) Hailee & Jaja: Ray Leeper (Jazz)                                                                                                                         Love these two dancers and agree both are power houses and are easy favorites in this competition. I know they classified this as jazz but it had a modern dance type of feel.

2) Alexia & Neptune: Dave Scott                                                                                                                                       This is a great example of why I love Dave Scott, just a crazy cooky concept. According to Cat there were 7 men holding that padded wall in place. Again thought both dancers were great.

3) JJ & Derek: Miriam & Leonardo (Argentine Tango)                                                                                       Stepping in for the injured Derek was Leonardo. This meant JJ had to be on her game. All I can say is wow…JJ held her own dancing with Leonardo and I agree with Nigel, JJ would have been on the hot tamale train.

4) Jim & Ariana: Sean Cheesman (Contemporary)                                                                                                    Love the Lorde version of this song. I knew Jim would be amazing but I felt like Ariana had proven why the judges have saved her last week.

5) Gaby & Virgil: Al Blackstone (Broadway)                                                                                                              Such a fun routine. However, I think sometimes the Broadway numbers tend to either you like them or you don’t. Even if the taps were prerecorded it was nice to see that Gaby have a little bit of tap in the number. Virgil’s Broadway experience paid off tonight.

6) Kate & Asaf: Sean Cheesman (Jazz)                                                                                                                         This one fell flat for me, but it wasn’t a train wreck. I think Kate is a fantastic dancer but there is something that is not coming through the screen. Asaf had a better week and was able to pull of the list.

7) Marissa & Yurellis: Chris Scott                                                                                                                             This was a great routine and felt like we finally saw Marissa in a different light. I thought both girls were great. The only thing I would have changed was the beanie that Yurellis was wearing.

8) Edson & Megz: Talia Favia (Contemporary)                                                                                                     Beginning to think that Megz can do just about anything. She isn’t going anywhere anytime soon. Finally we get to see Edson in his element and I hope he continues to shine.

Bottom 6

Team Stage: Kate, Marissa, and Derek. Team Street: Asaf, JJ, and Arianna

Twitter Save: JJ and Derek

Judges Save: Arianna and Kate

Going Home: Asaf and Marissa


August 3, 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.

Top 16 Thoughts

Dance on a Monday night is a great way to unwind, especially if your Monday is a little “manic”. Tonight we were treated to several new choreographers, including Reina Hidalgo and Asiel Hardison, who created that fun opening routine. Love a good dance to a Justin Timberlake song.

1) Alexia, Derek & Jaja: Stacey Tookey (contemporary)
Stacy is one of my favorite choreographers on the show. She found a way to show case each dancer. Jaja is continuing to grow and blossom. Glad they were all safe…even if Cat psyched out Derek.

2) Megz, Moises & Jim: JaQuel Knight (Hip hop)
JaQuel another new choreographer and it’s the mastermind behind the Single Ladies dance. This was one of those that didn’t quite work…well for the guys at least. Megz was in her element and I’m really starting to like her.

3) Edson, JJ & Yurelis: Tovaris Wilson (Jazz)
This jazz had a real groove to it which I liked. I really hope Edson wilt some votes this week because I don’t think we have really seen him peak yet. JJ’s technique was lacking just a little bit.

4) Asaf & Marissa: Jean Marc (Club Salsa)
I just so bad…I was hoping it would have been some what ok but it wasn’t. Asaf really did try but he seemed to just be walking through it. While Marissa was able to pick up the steps she completely ignored her partner and played towards the crowd. If they were able to pull off some chemistry then maybe the dance would have been slightly better.

5) Gaby, Ariana & Birum: Sean Cheesman (African Jazz)
This was a fun routine and the girls were in beast mode. Over all a good routine.

6) Kate & Neptune: Justin Giles (Contemporary)
Just a simply beautiful routine and a great connection between Neptune and Kate. They both stepped up their game.

7) Virgil & Hailee: Pharside & Pheonix (Hip hop)
This was definitely my favorite street style routine of the night. I was even entertained by these two as they stayed in character throughout the judges critique.

Bottom 6: Stage; Kate, Edson & Moises Street; Asaf, Birum & Ariana

Twitter Save: Kate and Ariana (this actually surprised me)
Judges Save: Edson and Asaf
Going Home: Moises and Birum

Personally I think the B-boys should have been switched and I’m sure I’m not alone in thinking that.

July 27, 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.

Top 20 to Top 18 Thoughts

Love tonight’s opening number choreographed by Pharside and Pheonix. My mom and I like to try to guess who does the choreography for the opening number before Cat reveals the answer. After watching last weeks show it seemed clear to the public the Team Street won the show. However, Cat revealed that according to the voting results that Team Stage (much to the surprise of Travis) won the night with 54% of the vote. Also, cute to see Twitch blush when Cat said she saw Magic Mike XXL (btw Twitch is fantastic in the movie) over the weekend.

Okay back to tonights show…the competition really gets started.

1. Haliee, Darion & Yurelis: Salsa; choreo by Jonathan & Oksana.
This had the possibility of being a great salsa trio but fell a little short. The girls were fantastic and hopefully they will be safe next week. Darion was the weak link in this trio. There wasn’t any emotion coming from him and the fact he also bobbled that lift did’t help either.

2. Derek & Ariana: Jazz; choreo by Ray Leeper
So nice to get to see Derek in a smaller number, giving the audience a chance to know who he is. I thought what Ariana said in the package was great, that she can also have technique in other styles. She had Twitch asking what team she was on. Overall a nice dance.

3. Alexia, Virgil & Megz: Contemporary; choreo by Dee Caspary
This was one of my favorites tonight. I was definitely impressed by Virgil and Megz. Also I saw Megz in a different light and looking forward to seeing what else she can do.

4. Burim,Gaby, Edson, & Lily: Bollywood; choreo by Nakul
While Bollywood routines are always fun to watch but they do make me nervous just because of the amount of detail and energy this style requires. Like usual the dancers pull it off. Happy to see that Burim is continuing to pick up the choreograph and love that he also gave credit to the other dancers for helping him. This dance was a great example of team work.

5. Kate, Asaf & Neptune: Broadway; choreo by Spencer Lift
Love this version of “All About the Bass” but the dance itself was okay. I like Kate and I agreed with Nigel that her cool confidence doesn’t always work in her favor. She needed a little more sass. Asaf seems to be his own worst enemy, hopefully he will get out of his head cause he seems to pick up the choreography pretty well.

6. Jaja & Jim: Hip hop; chore by Chris Scott
My other favorite of the night. Jim really reminds me of Alex Wong, which isn’t a bad thing in my book. Also I love the softer side of hip hop and the softer side of Jaja. These two are in my personal Top 10.

7. Marissa, Moises & JJ: Jazz; choreo by Ray Leeper
It was another good jazz routine for me. Though it was interesting to hear the difference of opinion from the judges. Nigel and Jason didn’t like they fact the girls had a smirk during some moments of the dance. Paula on the other had liked it.

Overall enjoyed both of the team dances but the prop in the Team Street routine was fun.

Bottom 6
Team Stage: Darion, Derek, and Moises
Team Street: Ariana, Lily, and Neptune

Twitter Save: Moises and Neptune
Judges Save: Derek and Ariana

Going home: Darion and Lily.

*Tune in Tomorrow night for the 10 year anniversary special at 8/7 central.

July 20, 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.

Top 20 Thoughts

The first live show of Season 12 was a nice introduction to the dancers and what they can do. This week only each team each team performed in their own style, which is always nice to see them in their comfort zone.

Last nights show kicked off with a great group number by Chris Scott and Jessica Kellar. It didn’t take me long to spot Asaf Goren, the replacement to the top 20 dancer that had to withdraw. Unfortunately, Alain “Hurrikane” injured his knee and due to the conditions it was a better idea to heal properly than to cause a reoccurring injury.

We also got a glimpse of what the live shows will be like this season. We will see duos, trios, and quartets of dancers. Starting next week stage and street will have to dance together and probably will expose some weaknesses. So for this episode I’m just going to give my thoughts on the dances and my best guess of who might be in the bottom three next week.

Team Stage
1) Stacey Tookey: Contemporary; Gaby, Derek, & Moises
Stacey once again creates a beautiful routine and the dancers knocked it out of the park. This was my favorite dance from the stage team. I think that all three dancers will be safe.

2) Brian Friedman: Jazz; Marissa, Hailee, & Alexia
So great to have Brian back on the show and he didn’t hold back with the choreography. The highlight was seeing him breakout his stilettos and show the girls if he can do it, so can they. Overall, I enjoyed this jazz number. I do have to agree with the judges when the dance and costumes are sexy, you don’t need to oversell the sexiness.

3) Swan: Ballet; Darion & Jim
From what I’ve seen online everyone loved the dance and the dancer but they did not love the costumes. I agree the costumes just did not work for me.

4) Travis Wall: Contemporary; Edson & Kate
Okay so don’t know what the judges had a problem with this dance and neither did Travis. I really hope these two stick around next week.

Team Street

1) Dave Scott: Megz, Neptune, & Jessica (JJ)
Seemed to have a mixed review from the judges but nothing really negative. There is a part of me that wants to say maybe nerves were a factor.

2) Chris Scott: Jaja, Lily, Burim & Asaf
This dance was a great example of why I love Chris. He likes to show off the dancers strengths. Also was one of the few times that I did not like the camera work because I could not see everything that was happening. I also hope the B-boys continue to work hard to pick up the choreography.

3) Pharside and Pheonix: Virgil, Ariana, & Yorellis
This was a fun routine with a clear theme and a well known song. Virgil will be an audience favorite. Yorellis will be one to watch since she does have training in some of the stage styles.

I honestly thought both teams had there winning moments and there okay moments. Who will be in the bottom is tough to say but based just on a gut feeling here’s who I think might be in trouble. Stage: Hailee, Alexia, and Darion. Street: Megz, Neptune, and Ariana.

Tune in next Monday night to find who stays and who goes.

July 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.

Vegas Week Part Two

Part two of the Vegas week call backs begins with the always interesting group round. Much to my surprise, there weren’t too many train wrecks. Perhaps the dancers are learning what to expect when they get to this round and have made the right decisions when working together. Only a few were cut after groups.

Choreography Round 3

Team Stage gets to learn a jazz routine from Sonya Tayeh. While Team Street get to work with NappyTabs. What I really loved was watch Tabitha showing the contestants what their choreography is supposed to look like. I’m not sure if they have done that in the past but it is nice to see what the choreography is supposed to look like.

Cat took notice that Travis was starting to get competitive, and he replied with how he lost the show the first time around. The same is true about Twitch. Both mentors were the runner-up on their season, so it’s safe to say that both would like a member from their team to win.

Now the moment we have been waiting for, the green mile and the reveal of the Top 20 dancers for Season 12. I correctly predicted 9 of the 20 dancers, it would have been 10 had Denys not dropped out. Still not sure why he really decided to drop out but at least he can still say he won the Canadian version of SYTYCD. Also, one of the top 20 has been injured and will no longer be able to compete but of course we won’t find out what happened till next week.

Here is your Top 20

Team Stage: Merissa Milele, Edson Juarez, Moises Parra, Kate Harpootlian, Hailee Payne, Jim Nowakowski, Alexia Meyer, Derek Piquette, Darion Flores, and Gaby Diaz

Team Street: Alain Hurrikane, Jessica Jrabone, Yorelis Apolinario, Lily Frias, Ariana Crowder, Virgil Godson, Eddie Eskridge, Megz Alfonso, Burim Jusufi, and Jaja Vankova

July 6, 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.

Detroit Auditions

Tonight’s auditions took us to the motor city; Detroit, MI.  I felt like Jason was starting to feel a little bit more comfortable in the judging role. Detroit seemed to lack stage dancers, there were a few but the auditions were mainly street dancers. Team Stage had 12 dancers make it to Vegas and Team Street had 23 dancer move on to the next round. Who were your standouts? Here are mine.


Christine Shepard, Brooke Fong, Kelsey Rose Young and Gabby Diaz


Kenya Sutton (Queen of Detroit), Samantha Reyes (Sam I Am), Roydell Shannon and BamBam (how cute was he)


Total Dancers through to Vegas: Team Stage: 55   Team Street: 60

Next week is the LA Auditions and from the preview I am excited to see all of the talent the LA has to offer.

June 8, 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.

So You Think You Can Dance Season 12 Renewal!!

We posted previously about Nigel’s somewhat cryptic tweet about whether So You Think You can Dance would be renewed and return for SYTYCD Season 12. The good news today is that Fox announced the renewal and return of So You Think You Can Dance for Season 12.

As part of the renewal, the show is going through some major changes. Here’s the details of those changes:

Throughout the auditions, the dancers who advance will be placed into two teams – the STAGE dancers, featuring those trained in styles such as contemporary, ballet, jazz or tap; and the STREET dancers, hopefuls skilled in hip-hop, animation or breaking. As the auditions continue, the judges, along with each team’s All-Star Mentor, will eliminate dancers until only the Top 20 – 10 Street Dancers and 10 Stage Dancers – remain. When the competition goes “live,” the Top 20 will be challenged weekly to perform a variety of styles, working with world-renowned choreographers. One dancer from each genre will be eliminated each week leading up to the Season Finale. Who will win…a dancer from the stage or the street?

This sounds like it could be a very good change. I (and I think Nigel) was always upset when an amazing street dancer was sent home from the show because they didn’t have skills in the other styles of dance. This sounds like it will give them an opportunity to stick around much longer. Plus, we should see a new level of choreography on the show as the choreographers can go nuts with their skills. My only caution would be that the choreographers think more about the art of creating something amazing versus just trying to showcase the dancers skills.

I do hope they’ll have some cross over dancing where we can see some b-boys doing contemporary and some ballroom dancers doing Krump. Oh wait. The announcement doesn’t list ballroom anywhere. Does that mean that ballroom will not be part of the new season or are they just grouped with the trained styles? That will be interesting to see. It would be a shame if Nigel included his beloved Tap and shutout ballroom.

What do you think of this new season?

November 17, 2014 I Written By

Just call me Charlie...but where are my angels?

Will There Be A So You Think You Can Dance Season 12?

This is the looming question. Will Fox choose to renew So You Think You Can Dance for another season or not. The ratings have certainly fallen off lately, but SYTYCD still has an amazingly passionate fan base. Here’s to hoping that Fox will at least give SYTYCD one more season to send the show off properly.

Nigel offered this tweet about the SYTYCD Renewal or SYTYCD Cancellation:

There’s also a petition on for So You Think You Can Dance as well. It could use a few more thousand people signing the petition to really make a difference. If you love the show, go and add your name to the list.

November 6, 2014 I Written By

Just call me Charlie...but where are my angels?