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!

D.C. and Austin Dancers Given “A Chance to Dance”

Tonight’s episode brought us to Washington D.C. and Austin. After finding 13 talented dancers in Salt Lake, it was interesting to see who was discovered in these two cities, and the differences in dance styles.

As, I think it was Billy, said, in Salt Lake there was a lot of talent and people, but the contestants didn’t have the best technique. Then after the D.C. tryouts, there was great technique, but not a lot of hopefuls showed up. I think that Houston definitely had great talent, technique, and a ton of dancers showed up. Perhaps, they saved the best for last? I do think that they might have been wishing they started in Houston, rather than end there.

At the beginning of the episode, Billy and Michael said they were going to some more unique areas in D.C., and they sure did! The pole dancing was a bit surprising, especially when Billy took the stage. But all I have to say is, dang. That man has seriously got some talent. While pole dancing isn’t usually (or really, ever) my favorite dancing to watch, but I will admit I enjoyed his impromptu dance. If you missed it, here’s a clip:

It was disappointing to see the lack of people that showed up in Washington D.C. I just wonder why that was, and why they chose to go to D.C. in the first place. They did seem to find a few good dancers here though, so it wasn’t a complete failure. It might have been good anyways, so Billy and Michael didn’t have to spend as much time deciding who should stay and who should go.

My favorites from D.C. were Kaitlin, a girl from Vienna, and Chase from Alexandria, Virginia. Chase stood out to me, obviously, because he had to leave early. I’m glad that he was there long enough to impress the judges and inspire them to select him to go on. I was  a bit concerned about his heart condition, and that he recently had surgery, but I guess you just have to trust that the doctors gave him the O.K. Patrick, the hippy-ish guy, stood out to me as well. I enjoyed watching him.

I felt like the second half of the show was more interesting to watch, mainly because I thought there was a lot of great talent there. As soon as they visited the University of Texas dance studio, I knew we were in for a treat. I was instantly impressed with the dancers, and felt like they hit the gold mine.

It was interesting how they called out one dancer to dance at the second studio they visited. His name was Trevor Allen and was from Austin, Texas. However, I’m so glad they did! He had some awesome moves and technique, and I doubt they would have seen that had he just shown up to the auditions. I wasn’t surprised when they asked him to move on before the auditions even started. Hopefully he will make it through to the final 12 dancers who will perform at the gala. I really enjoyed him.

The auditions definitely packed a lot of material into a short amount of time. In some ways, that is good, because the dancers that can perform under pressure were able to shine. But it was unfortunate for those that may not have been showing off their best moves, because it wasn’t the type of dancing they were used to. It was interesting to see the dancers as they showed of their best moves to “Chaine Chaine Chaine”. I thought that was a smart move on the part of Billy and Michael, as it showed who could do a basic task.

I didn’t catch a lot of the names of those that went on tonight, but there’s definitely some to watch for. I loved the group number. It was so creative and fun to watch! Houston was definitely a success, and I feel kind of bad that some of the people didn’t make it through.

Well, the auditions are over and next week we will find out which of the 24 will go home, and which 12 will move on to perform at the Gala for the Dizzy Feet Foundation. I think it’s going to be intense, especially because there are only 22 days left til show time! This preview definitely makes it seem that way:

Who was your favorite dancer from the night?

August 24, 2012 I Written By

Katie Clark is a journalism student at Brigham Young University in her senior year. She is originally from Littleton, Colorado, and hopes to move back there after graduation. Reality television is her favorite to watch, and has enjoyed writing about America's Got Talent and A Chance to Dance. She is a stay-at-home-mom who enjoys writing (especially blogs), cooking and sewing (while spending far too much time on Pinterest finding inspiration) and being outside with her husband and son.

Eldon Johnson: One of Two Men to Make it Through SLC “A Chance to Dance” Auditions

Because only two men made it through the Salt Lake auditions, it wasn’t hard to notice them. Eldon Johnson was highlighted a few times throughout the show, so for that reason, he stood out to me quite a bit. As I’ve done some researching on some of the dancers that made it through from Salt Lake City, he is one of the only ones I can find information on. Since I think we’ll be seeing him a bit more of him in the near future, I thought he’d be a good one to highlight.

Typing in the name “Eldon Johnson” on YouTube brings up pages and pages of videos. He is a very talented man. Here are a few of the top videos that I saw as I was watching him perform:

So who is Eldon Johnson? Well, he started getting professional dance instruction from the time he was 16, and his passion and talent took of from there. His first training was at the Winner School in Salt Lake City, and after two years, was offered a job dancing with the Odyssey Dance Theatre. After accepting that position, he continued to stay with Odyssey, and just completed his 15th year. He is now an instructor at Odyssey Dance Theatre, and has quite the resume.

In 2010, he was named the Best Individual Dancer 2010 at the Utah Best of State Gala and has performed all over the world. Some of the stages he has danced on have been in China, France, Mexico and Switzerland. He was a dancer in the hit Disney Channel movie, High School Musical and High School Musical 3. Eldon has worked with many famous choreographers and companies over the years.

In an article written by the Salt Lake Tribune, Eldon was quoted as saying the following about the SLC auditions that were featured in the premiere of A Chance to Dance:

They’re not looking for soloists, but people who work well together in a group . . . [The auditions have been] one of my favorite experiences I’ve ever had as a dance, and I’ve been doing it for 15 years professionally.

Because of his experience in the dance world, I’m not surprised a bit that he made it through. I mean, he knows how to work individually and with a group, and has worked with famous choreographers around the world, not to mention his experience traveling the world. He really impressed me last week, and I’m excited to see how he fares on the show. I don’t think this is the last we’ll see of Eldon Johnson.

August 21, 2012 I Written By

Katie Clark is a journalism student at Brigham Young University in her senior year. She is originally from Littleton, Colorado, and hopes to move back there after graduation. Reality television is her favorite to watch, and has enjoyed writing about America's Got Talent and A Chance to Dance. She is a stay-at-home-mom who enjoys writing (especially blogs), cooking and sewing (while spending far too much time on Pinterest finding inspiration) and being outside with her husband and son.

11 Dancers Move Forward for “A Chance to Dance” From Salt Lake City Auditions

Tonight was the premiere of the new dancing “docu-series” we’ve been talking about: A Chance To Dance. 

Nigel Lythgoe, executive producer and judge on SYTYCD, decided he wanted to create a company of 12 talented dancers from around the country and have them premiere at the Dizzy Feet Foundation gala in New York City. Easy, right? Maybe not — he wanted it done in 28 days. So he contacted the creators of the Ballet Boyz Dance Company, Billy Trevitt and Michael Nunn, to go to different cities to visit dance studios and then hold an open audition in hopes of finding talented, classically trained, dancers to make the final cut.

On the premiere tonight, Billy and Michael landed in Salt Lake City and were picked up by their host, Allison Holker, from season 2 of the SYTYCD, and were welcome by wonderful Utah traffic (which I know far too well) on the way to different dance studios in the surrounding area. At the first one, two girls automatically were given passes to the next stage because they impressed Billy and Michael so much, and everyone else was invited to attend the open audition the next day. They visited a few more studios before calling it a day.

But enough of the re-capping. If you’re reading this, you must have watched the show. So now I’ll just give my thoughts.

The show started off strong. We got right into the audition/scouting stage, which I liked. Most of these dancers were serious about what they were doing, and there weren’t any “spoof” auditions that we often see on dancing and singing shows. It also become obvious very early on that Billy and Michael meant business. I mean, someone left without saying anything, and you could tell it bothered them. I loved the speech they gave at that point — I would have been scared to even attempt to leave! They also didn’t waste time cutting people, which was unfortunate for those that didn’t have much a of a chance to show what they had, but it kept the show moving.

Here is a video from tonight’s episode that has Billy “showing how it’s done”:

Billy and Michael had three fears going into the open audition:

  1. Nobody would show up
  2. Those that showed up wouldn’t be any good
  3. How could they know if someone was really as talented as they appeared after one day

There was definitely a huge turnout of a variety of people — a dance student at BYU, an organic gardner, and a guy in his mid-thirties.

Jaecey, more commonly referred to as the hoola hoop girl, stood out to me right away because of her less-dance like attire, and, of course, her hoola hoops. Unfortunately, turning the first part of the audition, she stood out…but not really in a good way. I commented right away that I felt like she didn’t seem to be picking it up very well, and my thoughts were quickly voiced by Billy and Michael. I definitely agreed with that cut.

I did wonder why they kept around A.J. He definitely had a very cocky persona from the beginning, and he just didn’t seem to be that talented. He blamed it on the nerves, but I think he just wasn’t really wanting to listen. I was relieved when he was cut in the end, especially after he made the comment about saving the girls in his trio toward the end.

The group pieces were pretty cool. I think my favorite was Jen and Jessica, who performed second. They seemed very connected and fluid, and it was a beautiful piece to watch. Another stand out performance was Sarah and Eldon, who went first. I think these two could make it to the end. Here’s the clip of their performance:

In the end, I agreed with most of their choices. I noticed that they focused Sarah quite a bit throughout the entire episode. She had several interviews throughout the episode, and it seemed like Billy and Michael singled her out quite a bit. I wonder if that’s a hint at the future — will she make the final cut? She was a bit emotional, so if she can keep that under control, I think she has a good chance.

They are leaving Salt Lake with 11 dancers, however, only two of those were men. Hopefully D.C. and Austin will prove to have more talented male performers. I didn’t catch all the names of those moving on, but among those 11 are  Sarah, Jen, Jessica, Sydney, Joni, Megan, Chase, Eldon, and Savannah. In the individual pieces earlier on in the episode, I really liked Joni’s performance. Beyond her, Sarah, Jen, Jessica, and Eldon stuck out to me.

Don’t forget to tune in every Friday until September 28th to see more auditions and who makes the final 12. Plus, if you don’t have Ovation TV, remember that you can stream A Chance to Dance online. This is a competition like none other I’ve seen before. I’m excited for the upcoming episodes and to follow the journey of these dancers, and to see who makes it to the final performance. I love that there is more than one winner, and this is giving dancers an opportunity they may not have otherwise had. Just so you want to come back next week, here’s episode 2’s promo:


August 17, 2012 I Written By

Katie Clark is a journalism student at Brigham Young University in her senior year. She is originally from Littleton, Colorado, and hopes to move back there after graduation. Reality television is her favorite to watch, and has enjoyed writing about America's Got Talent and A Chance to Dance. She is a stay-at-home-mom who enjoys writing (especially blogs), cooking and sewing (while spending far too much time on Pinterest finding inspiration) and being outside with her husband and son.

National Dance Day 2011 – Dance 4 Your Life

DanceOn’s recap of National Dance Day, which took place on July 30, 2011. Find out what went down all across the country, and learn how you can incorporate dance into your everyday life for healthy living! Video Below 🙂

August 4, 2011 I Written By

Nappytabs Dance Day Choreography

Via Nigel and Adam, check out this short video where Tabitha and Napoleon walk us through some of their choreography to get us worked up and fit before tonight’s show. (Come on, you know your butt’s gonna be on the couch for hours tonight, catching the first performance episode of Season 7!) 🙂

June 16, 2010 I Written By

SYTYCD Season 6 Cheers and Jeers

Here’s Season 6 in review. Y’all brought up a lot of this stuff in recent comments (Mrs. D’s comment in particular), which gave me the idea to do a review of the season, what we liked and didn’t like. If you disagree with me (or agree), feel free to put your two cents in, as it’s all subjective and I’d love to know what you think!


This season felt more rushed that any other that I can think of. Between baseball, the Presidential address, so many audition episodes and an early end to the season because of Christmas coming up, I feel like this year’s Top 20 got shafted on actual dancing time. But not just the dancers – the choreographers got fewer chances to wow us. And the audience lost out, as well.


I loved that I didn’t have to wait till the summer for a new season. While America’s Favorite Dancer gets a shorter reign if they continue on the two seasons a year model, we had a shorter wait, which was really nice. After Season 5, I just don’t know how I would have contained my SYTYCD longing. Are the producers hoping to follow a Survivor/Dancing with the Stars model with the two seasons a year thing? If so, they should be just as smart about scheduling and not hesitate to move the finale to a separate night (like Survivor’s Sunday finale yesterday).


The new stage, or at least the screen behind it. It seems like we’ve transitioned from utter hatred toward the new stage, which always threatens to swallow up the dancers, to an acceptance that we’ll probably never get our intimate little stage back. Many readers have begun to say that the screen and imprudent use of it, is actually the bigger issue.


The group numbers were able to utilize this enormous space in really pleasing ways. It’s nice to think that SYTYCD can now command (and fill) a larger audience space. Maybe it’ll end up being a wonderful challenge to the choreographers (as well as the production crew, especially camera folk) to recapture that intimate feeling.


It was awful having three static judges (Nigel, Mary and Adam). No new blood! Adam seemed to be the only one who had something to say, most reliably at least. And when the three additional judges (Debbie, Lil C and Tyce) came in for the finale, it felt like an eternity since I’d seen them and that they were given favorites to pick rather than choosing from their hearts. Maybe that’s not true, and I’m sure they still kept up with the season, but their involvement didn’t have the same feeling because they never rotated in and out during the season.


Adam Shankman is a wonderful addition to the judging panel. I didn’t mind him being a constant, I only minded that there was no new blood. You almost always knew what Nigel and Mary were going to say, so he was a breath of fresh air (especially at the beginning of the season). Adam is funny and honest (he called out choreographers for bad routines!) and you get the impression that he’ll actually hire the dancers he likes (i.e. when Noelle got cut, I was okay because I felt Adam wanted to work with her), so he’s a valuable part of the panel.


Shane Sparks and Alex DaSilva‘s arrests (both for sexual crimes related to their dance students) are not only damaging to the choreographer’s careers, but also haunt the dance community at large and threaten to harm SYTYCD’s image.


The Dizzy Feet Foundation and gala do wonderful things for the dance community, SYTYCD and for us, as it unites our favorite shows, dancers, choreographers, crews in a really positive mission. It raises awareness and gives our favorites work! We can help, too!


How many injuries did we have this season? Mia Michaels was rushed to the hospital at the beginning of the season. Then, Billy Bell had to drop out due to illness. Noelle was injured in the first competition show while Ellenore and Ashleigh were both hurt during the Top 8 week and Russell was injured in the finale. Did I forget anyone??


Despite the overly-produced and rushed feel of the season, despite all the injuries, we had a wonderful Top 20 this season. As John pointed out, they had a great mix of styles and backgrounds. We saw some consistent excellence (Jakob and Ellenore, namely) and some great growth arcs (arguably, everybody, but notably Kathryn and Russell, in my opinion). We had some “characters” to get behind this season, in Legacy and the DiLellos in particular.


America’s SYTYCD lost Mia Michaels this season and her absence was certainly felt. Our loss was apparently SYTYCD Canada’s gain, so while it’s good that she’s working within the SYTYCD family, there’s a great big gaping hole where she was in our shows.


Mia’s absence gave way to a ton of “new” choreographers this season. New to us, at least. Like Sean Cheesman, Jason Gilkison, Spencer Liff and a routine from Desmond Richardson and Dwight Rhoden. We had more Wade Robson, more Stacey Tookey, more Mandy Moore and more Travis Wall routines, which seriously rocked. More Sonya routines, many of which blew our minds, like the “Tore My Heart” Oona - Tore My Heart - Single - Tore My Heart routine with Ellenore and Jakob.  Hopefully, we’ll get to see special Mia routines, maybe one or two a season, in the future. I don’t want SYTYCD America to be completely devoid of Mia Michaels, but I’m glad we had so many standout choreographers, new and recurring, this season.


This season had some really awful costumes…


And some really amazing music. But these two things are pretty typical of all seasons, I suppose. 🙂


No mention of a Season 6 tour! Not even on the finale show! What are they thinking? There had better be a tour, or I will seriously cry foul. I’m keeping my feelers out, y’all, and using my contacts, to see if/when the tour will be.


I’m glad they mentioned auditions for Season 7 because it sounds like it’ll be another summer season. So that means that we’ll either have two seasons a year, or we’ll go back to our beloved summer format (probably the former). SYTYCD keeps motoring on, which is good news. And again, we don’t have to wait several months till fall, sounds like.


Hell no to the Top 6! I hope Fox and SYTYCD realize they can never do this to us again. This was the worst idea ever and I suspect the results might have been significantly different, if we’d had a normal Top 4 finale. Not cool.


The Meet the Top 20 episode was the biggest stroke of genius and the best of all the new ideas and concepts we dealt with this season. I hope they *always* do this from now on. It was sublime to see all of the Top 20 dancing within their styles without fear of elimination. Some of the best dancing of the entire season happened in this very first episode, as evidenced by how many of the judges’ favorites in the finale show were from this very episode.

I think that’s all I’ve got. I’ve run out of steam. But I’m sure I’ve forgotten something you hated or loved, so let me know what you think.

December 21, 2009 I Written By

Lyndsey Parker’s Red Carpet Interviews at the Dizzy Feet Gala

The title pretty much speaks for itself. For all of us who wished we could’ve been at the Gala, Lyndsey Parker was there and interviewed several dancers on the Red Carpet. It’s a long video with, among others, Adam Shankman, Jeanine, Lacey, Quest Dance Crew, Derek Hough, Mary Murphy, Season 5 dancers Kayla and Melissa with Caitlin and Jason in the background, as well as Ade talking to Katee, Cheryl Burke and Mark Ballas. Enjoy!

Dizzy Feet Gala: Reality Rocks’ Red-Carpet Interviews from Yahoo! Music on Vimeo.

December 17, 2009 I Written By