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Open Letter to SYTYCD Producers: How to Fix SYTYCD

Dear SYTYCD Producers,

Here at PureSYTYCD, we’ve had several conversations lately about why ratings, Internet traffic and overall enthusiasm and discussion have been sinking season by season. Margaret says it can be traced to the infamous Fall season, Season 6, when our favorite show started changing swiftly and drastically. While some of the changes have been really amazing (All-Stars), some of them have been just dreadful (yes, I’m going to say it once again – the stage).

So Fox, Nigel, here are OUR pointers for how to fix the show (and readers, please, please add your own in the comments or tell us how you feel about ours and add your voice to the open letter).

1. Keep rotating judges and guest judges – just rotate Nigel right off the panel. We loved the guest judges this season (with the notable exceptions of Carmen Electra and Katie Holmes), especially the fact that we got a rotation of our favorite choreographers on the panel. We’ve learned that static judges are annoying, no matter who they are. Whether it was Nigel, Mary, Mia or Adam, we got tired of hearing the same voices when we already knew what they were going to say. Jean-Marc is a good (pervy) example of this on the Canadian show. However, Nigel almost never rotates out,  so we’re extra tired of him. If you need guest judges to replace him, we’ll make ourselves available. Hey, why not? Fans of the show are good judges, considering the best of the celebrity guest judges were the ones who were clearly fans.

2. Speaking of Nigel, let’s talk about his producing style. While we can’t say we’ve ever produced a show and we can only imagine the numerous concerns involved, we get a little annoyed by Nigel’s heavy-handed pulling-the-puppet-strings style. While we admire that he’s always willing to try new things and some of those new things have really been excellent, the best producing is the kind that doesn’t draw attention to itself. Nigel keeps insisting on shoving the dancers and the show into this perfectly produced package. (Can we talk about how the judges kept the elimination after Top 10 and it was never acknowledged on the show? And how the girls were “beasts” slaying the boys THE WHOLE SEASON, probably to compensate for the Girl Slaughter of Season 7?) Melanie got dubbed America’s Favorite Dancer (by the judges) in the auditions and was never truly challenged or critiqued (by the judges) during the whole season. It could’ve cost Melanie the win she totally deserved if she hadn’t been so adorable and talented. We’re getting tired of Nigel deciding who’s going to win and then trying to make it so. Is it America’s Favorite Dancer or is it Nigel’s Favorite Dancer? Guess which show we’re not going to watch next season?

So how do we fix this, you might ask? John suggests that we need more charismatic dancers who are really good in one style and have to fight to conquer other styles (like Ivan and Russell, who won his season). Marianya says she misses seeing the dancers really challenged at the beginning of the show. Fans of SYTYCD love watching the unexpected partnership and the unexpected dancer struggle and then achieve, making themselves our favorites in the process.

Margaret: Part of what makes those first few weeks so interesting, besides watching partnerships that we really hook into (Melanie & Marko) is wondering how other dancers would work together. If Kayla & Max/Ashley & Kupono hadn’t been in the bottom during week 2 of season 5, Max & Ashley may not have been eliminated at the same time and we wouldn’t have gotten to see the surprisingly great partnership of Kayla & Kupono—which means we wouldn’t have gotten “Addiction” and it’s rated as one of the best numbers the show has ever had, rightly so.

So one way to fix this would be to go back to SYTYCD’s roots. We’ve had some of the most technically gifted dancers the last three seasons and sometimes we could hardly bring ourselves to care because while there was nothing “wrong” with a dancer or a routine, we just couldn’t get excited. This might mean more bad routines and bad dancing but will make us so grateful again for the truly transcendent moments. Which brings us to…

3. We need diversity in dance styles and choreographers. Doreana Sanchez is not the only person choreographing disco routines and Nakul dev Mahajan is not the only Bollywood choreographer. Go to Canada if you don’t believe me. What would happen if there were only one contemporary routine on any given show or maybe only one contemporary routine every few weeks? What if we HAD to depend on Afro Jazz, House, all of the Ballroom styles, Bollywood, Pas de Deux , etc. to fill in the episode?

And for diversity, we don’t even have to look any further than the other SYTYCD franchises. Canada and UK have phenomenal choreographers (and dancers!), as did Australia. Those are just the English-speaking franchises. What wonderful choreographers could we find if the producers imported from the Ukraine SYTYCD or the Turkish or Polish versions?

4. And speaking of one big happy family, why not create another Fall show, but make it different, perhaps a shorter super competition? What if we had SYTYCD SuperStars and all of the previous contestants from ALL of the franchises were eligible to come back and compete for the “World’s Favorite Dancer” title? Maybe this show is 2 episodes a week for only 4 weeks, just to make it special and so that it might not overlap with the World Series again? Dancers featured on SYTYCD don’t have a potential “product” like American Idol singers do when they release a cd, so anytime the producers can create a vehicle for these dancers that doesn’t overshadow the current cast, they’re helping create more of a career and presence for the dancers. The great thing about this idea is that it totally supports this next point…

5. Ditch the musical guests. Or ditch about 90% of them. Keep the 10% that are willing to use SYTYCD dancers for backup dancers (including the current cast! didn’t that happen one season?). Maybe the musical performances bring in money, or maybe you producers only think they do. The reality is, they usually suck and I’m only watching the dancers anyway. It’s like, on Dancing with the Stars, the ONLY reason I watch the musical performances is to catch the dancing that happens at the same time. I would MUCH RATHER see dance performances. It’d be a good time to show us alumni dancers re-dancing their iconic numbers as much more evolved dancers (think Kent and LoFro doing the prom number – it was only 8 months later and they’d already become such different dancers). Bring in performers from all the other SYTYCD franchises, like you did with UK’s recent winner Matt Flint. Pairing him with the all-too-soon-eliminated Nick and Jess in a tap routine that THEY choreographed? BRILLIANT. Easily one of the highlights of not just the finale, but of the season. Do it more. That’s the key to re-building your audience: when you do something we like, do it more. When you do something we don’t like, stop doing it.

6. Which means, bring back the smaller and more intimate stage. Season 8’s stage (or the camera work and lack of distracting backlights) was better than the Seasons 6 and 7 monstrosity, but only by a bit. Watching SYTYCD Canada reminds me of how amazing the original stage is and you really need to listen to us and bring it back. It was a big part of why we fell in love with the show and the Seasons 1-5 dancers. Do you know why? We were closer to them. There were more physical possibilities for the choreographers when it came to moving the dancers around the stage because it wasn’t a giant, uniform thing. When it comes down to it, the stage represents the entire SYTYCD producers vs SYTYCD audience disagreement. With this big uber stage (since S6), you are focusing on the package, the spectacle. The more intimate circle stage that we love and still mourn focuses on the dancers.

Margaret: I miss my stairs! There was something about the old stage and how it was round that made the dances feel like stories, not performances for an audience. We were able to get more closeups, feel the emotions, and the set was about enhancing the dancing, not enhancing the spectacle. My best example came from, oddly, the guy I think used the stage the best during his time with SYTYCD, Wade. With “Ruby Blue,” Brandon and Janette entered the story by popping up from behind a wall and coming down the stairs, and their ability to use the stage in that entrance played a major role in the believability of the movements. But, in Season 6, with the “inside Van Goh’s head” piece Wade did for Peter and Pauline, the ridiculous fractured painting that rotated and flipped on the projecting screen was super distracting and took away from what was actually a really well-danced piece, especially from Peter. It was a very cool routine and they danced it really well, but their technical success was overshadowed by the “overdoneness” of the set.

7. Instead of spending the money on the bigger stage and a lot of flash, we would rather that you spend the money to figure out how to release SYTYCD DVDs so we can re-watch our favorite seasons without resorting to YouTube and other means. There is a market for it, so figure it out. Whenever you focus on the dancers–current, alumni, International franchise dancers, whatever–you can’t go wrong with us. That’s the simple fact at the heart of the matter.

And now that we’ve critiqued you quite a lot, here’s a list of what we like and want you to keep.

1. The All-Stars – having them arrive at the Top 10 is the perfect marriage. Keep it up. Only, we want to see them re-dance their iconic routines and you missed a lot of opportunities to do this during Season 8. Fix that.

Margaret: Not only does this give us the chance to see dancers we love again, but use this as a way to plug their success. Allison & Ivan were All-Stars in the same week, how were they not asked to dance together?! Same with Chelsie & Mark! Those are two of the most successful partnerships, and some of the best personalities, the show has ever had, be proud of that, they are SYTYCD success to the highest degree.

2. The Meet the Top 20 performance – sheer genius. It’s been a highlight of each season you’ve done it. Especially since we get to see the dancers twice on the live show before anyone’s eliminated. Keep that.

3. We like the dancers you pick! We just want you to cut back on the contemporary/jazz and pick some dancers with different backgrounds. We want them to be challenged more and truly judged, all of them and fairly. And clearly they’re talented, because they’re going on to dance in movies, commercials, music videos, music tours, Broadway shows, Glee and DWTS.

Margaret: We also love underdogs, they’re fun to root for. Give us more Tads, Russells, Dominics, Jeanines, Evans, Nicks, even Lauren Froderman floundered her 1st week and was in danger of going home!

4. Cat is the one thing most of us can agree on. She smooths over the awkward moments and she uses her great sense of humor to keep things rolling. I love it when she gets to pick dances for the finale show.

Remember, no matter what, we love the show. We only want to like it again.

Sincerely (and xoxo),

SYTYCD Fans/PureSYTYCD writers

P.S. Sorry this is a little long – clearly we had a lot to say.

September 6, 2011 I Written By

my favorite season 8 dances

whew! what a finale! while we’re all still relishing last night’s amazingness, thought I’d take a minute and post my favorite dances from the season. this was a great chance to look back for me, and, for as much grief as we had with things that we felt were wrong with season 8, it still produced some pretty awesome numbers.

These aren’t in order of preference, just week they were done, mostly b/c I’m cheating and using Wikipedia 😉

Iveta’s intro (ballroom medley with Pasha)–while this wasn’t quite as steamy as last season’s intro of Cristina Santana w/ All-Stars Pasha and Anya, this was, by far, the best ballroom we had this season, mostly because it was Iveta in her style. Caitlynn and Pasha’s Argentine Tango that was replayed last night was soo beautiful and a fabulous showcase for her, but technically, this medley was just unbelievable.

Melanie and Marko’s “Turn to Stone”–on the night of the premiere, this was the only number that made me literally punch the air with excitement. I probably rewatched this number a dozen times over that week. For me, Melanie & Marko are the best pair the show has had since Katee & Joshua. They made each other better dancers, and emotionally they were just totally in sync. The slow cartwheel that Marko does over Melanie still gives me goosebumps.

Caitlynn & Mitchell’s “Turning Tables”–our first chance to see them as a couple and they did NOT disappoint. Stacey Tookey has a way of bringing emotions out of dancers that they may not have touched before. The chairs and lamps could have gotten in the way, but they really worked with them well, and the interplay between light and dark made the piece really interesting and powerful. For what Mitchell lacked in technical refinement, he made up for in pure emotion and drive, and I could tell he had a lot to prove after not being able to dance week 1. I loved this partnership.

Clarice & Jess’s “Fly Me to the Moon” foxtrot–as you all probably saw from my posts, I was NOT Jess’s biggest fan, I found in immature and annoying a lot. But NOT in this number, I loved this one. His broadway background lent itself really well to the jazzy bluesy feel of the song. Though there were quite a few points when they were in closed hold when the movements felt heavy, their musicality overshadowed that for me. It was THIS type of movement I was looking for in Ryan & Ricky’s broadway that they did a couple of weeks after this, when Jesse Tyler Ferguson said they were “hitting the ceiling” with their movements and not finishing them.

Tadd & Jordan’s “One Night Stand” hip hop–just so much fun. really great to see Tadd kind of in his element, and how NappyTabs were able to incorporate some of what Tadd does really well. I agree with the judges that it almost became too much about the story, but this was one that I just really enjoyed watching.

Caitlynn & Mitchell’s “To Love You More” contemporary–one of Mandy Moore’s best pieces this season (I’d put it just behind Neil & Melanie, but I’ll get to that later!) The trust they had in each other was innocent but so mature at the same time. They’re both so young, but they tapped into something really amazing.

Sasha & Alexander’s “That’s Life”–their best dance together, Alexander finally let it all go. He was so tight for so long, but in this one, he just felt free, and it lifted a weight from their partnership that had been there really since the beginning. This was also one of Tyce’s best pieces.

Sasha & Twitch’s “Misty Blue”–what can I say that hasn’t already been said?!

Neil & Melanie’s “Total Eclipse of the Heart”–for me, Neil wins the award for most improved dancer since his season aired. He’s become a really fabulous technician as well as an even better partner. He breathes life into the moments between the movements in a way he didn’t used to when he was on the show. Melanie matched Neil step for step, and really shined in this piece. And the leap!! The trust she had in him was just amazing. This was a goose-bump inducing one for sure.

Caitlynn & Tadd’s “White Tie & Tails” foxtrot–was this the best technically? no. But there was such joy on both of their faces. Jonathan Roberts, a pro from DWTS, really does the classic ballroom dances incredibly well. He has a real sense of how to impart wisdom on the dancers in terms of how to embody the dance even if you don’t quite have everything technically sound. And stylistically, Caitlynn looked AMAZING, wow.

Kent & Sasha’s Wall contemporary–Kent is my runner-up in the “most improved since his season aired” award. The strength that he has gained, both physically and emotionally since last summer is absolutely astounding. He would NOT have been able to pull of that routine the way he did this season last summer. And his strength helped Sasha’s strength and vulnerability really emerge.

Tadd & Melanie’s “A Chorus Line/Black Swan”-esque broadway–though I really liked Chris & Ashley’s “Please Mr. Jailer,” THIS is the broadway I would have rather seen last night. I know why they didn’t repeat it, but this was the best broadway of the season, by far. Nothing felt out of place, from the music to the camera work to the lighting to the dancing. It was so sexy but so mean at the same time, I know that sounds weird. For me, this was Tadd’s best dance other than the vulture dance with Jordan.

Lauren & Marko’s contemporary from finale night–this was my favorite dance from the finale. It started with the music; the fact that the music didn’t have big sweeping crescendos allowed the dancing to be the most important thing on the stage. The dancers could just dance, the music wasn’t ruling the way they moved, THEY ruled the way they moved in their relationship on stage together. Loved it loved it loved it. Tessandra hit the ball out of the park with this one.

so there’s my list! what do you guys think? any that I missed?

August 13, 2011 I Written By

SYTYCD Season 8 Finale Part 2 Music

So excited for tonight! I’m going to have to work double hard cause I’ll just want to soak it all in instead of taking notes. 🙂

Sonya Tayeh Top 20/Top 4 (+All-Stars??) Group Routine: District 78’s “Wanna Get Hype” – Wanna Get Hype - Radios At Reception

Mary picked Tyce’s Sasha/Kent routine: Me’Shell NdegĂ©ocello’s “Fool of Me” – Fool of Me - Bitter

Nigel picked Nappytabs’s Melanie/Marko routine: Leona Lewis’s “I Got You” – I Got You - Echo (Deluxe Version)

Robin picked Mandy Moore’s Tadd/LoFro routine: Queen’s “Another One Bites the Dust” –Another One Bites the Dust - Queen: Greatest Hits

Lil C picked Nappytabs’s Miranda/Robert routine: Busta Rhymes’s “Break Ya Neck” – Break Ya Neck - Genesis

Cat picked Tyce’s Top 8 Group Routine: James Newton Howard’s “The Circus Sets Up” The Circus Sets Up - Water for Elephants (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack) – from the Water for Elephants soundtrack.

SYTYCD UK champ Matt Flint, Nick Young and Jess LeProtto tap to: Michael Buble’s “Can’t Buy Me Love” – Can't Buy Me Love - It's Time

Mary picked Mandy Moore’s Melanie/Neil routine: Bonnie Tyler’s “Total Eclipse of the Heart” – Total Eclipse of the Heart - Faster Than the Speed of Night

Jesse picked Sonya’s Marko/Allison routine: Jeff Buckley’s “I Know It’s Over” – I Know It's Over - So Real: Songs from Jeff Buckley

Tyce picked Sonya’s Top 10 Girls routine: Chonique Sneed ft. Lisette Bustamante’s “Pop, Drop and Roll” – Pop Drop & Roll (feat. Lisette Bustamante) - Pop Drop & Roll (feat. Lisette Bustamante) - Single

Lil C picked Spencer Liff’s Ashley/Chris routine: Rachel Sweet’s “Please, Mister Jailer” – Please, Mr. Jailer - Cry-Baby (Music from the Original Motion Picture Soundtrack) from the “Crybaby” soundtrack (THANK YOU BETH!)

Nigel picked Christopher Scott’s Sasha/Twitch routine: Dorothy Moore’s “Misty Blue” – Misty Blue - Misty Blue

Sonya picked Christopher Scott’s Top 10 Guys routine: Nathan Lanier’s “Velocity” – Velocity - Velocity - Single

Jesse picked Miriam and Leonardo’s Caitlynn/Pasha Argentine tango: Orquesta Color Tango’s “Malajunta” – Malajunta - Con Estilo Para Bailar

Mary picked Travis’s Melanie/Marko routine: Ingrid Michaelson’s “Turn to Stone” – Turn to Stone - Turn to Stone - Single

Nigel picked Sonya’s Melanie/Sasha routine: District 78’s “Game On” – Game On - Game On - Single

August 11, 2011 I Written By

Podcast: SYTYCD Season 8 – Top 6 Performance and Elimination

Summary
The top 6 proved to be an interesting week as it wasn’t clear which dancers were going to be in the finals and what two were going to be sent home. It turned out that Caitlynn and Ricky were the ones that had their journeys end, which was predictable but still sad to see. Ricky did well in his contemporary in showing us why he made it as far as he did in the competition and Caitlynn had an excellent night with two solid routines. In another season with a weaker pool of girls Caitlynn may have made it into the finals.

The top 4 makes for an intriguing mix and we go over their performances from this past week. Like last week, we spend some time on Tadd and go over what we liked from him, but that we feel like the choreographers, for better or worse, aren’t challenging him in the same way as the rest of the contestants. Marko, Sasha and Melanie all have been strong the entire season and we’ve loved nearly everything put forward by Melanie and Marko. Any of these four contestants can win the whole win, which is not a normal situation for most SYTYCD finales. Next week should prove to have a gripping conclusion.

We spend a few minutes going over and debunking the “Melanie conspiracy.” We don’t see any evidence for this view and it’s not something we like seeing appear all over the internet, not because we’re Melanie fans but because we like to keep the dialogue about reality competitions honest and based in what we see, not what we imagine.

We wrap up by giving our list of good routines from this season that we’d like to see appear in the finale.

Please let us know your thoughts by dropping us a comment here after listening! We love to hear feedback and what you thought of the show. We also encourage you to check out our blog and twitter feed to keep up to date with us!

Episode Length: 35:11

Time Stamps
0:00 – The guest judging by Christina Applegate and Lil ‘C
1:35 – Eliminated: Ricky – Contemporary and Waacking
5:57 – Eliminated: Caitlynn – Samba and Jazz
9:05 – The end of the Tyce kiss of death
10:45 – Top 4: Tadd
15:10 – Top 4: Marko
17:45 – Top 4: Sasha
20:18 – Top 4: Melanie
24:00 – The alleged Melanie conspiracy
27:30 – Who’s going to win overall?
28:15 – The routines we’d like to see reprised in the finale
34:33 – Wrap-up


Listen to the podcast

Episode 14 direct download

Subscribe to podcast on iTunes

 

August 6, 2011 I Written By

Over the past few years my fiancée Meghan slowly brought me into the world of television, turning me into a full-fledged fan of both scripted and reality shows. So You Think You Can Dance turned into one of my favorite reality shows as it is a competition that takes itself seriously, providing the audience with artistic choreography and talented dancers. It's certainly not something I ever expected to get emotionally invested in, but here I am! Meghan and I are very analytic when it comes to the things we enjoy. We constantly discussed and analyzed shows with each other and after doing this for a couple years, we decided that we should turn these discussions into a podcast. We created Reflections on Pop Entertainment, a podcast that provides commentary and analysis of popular entertainment as found in visual mediums, particularly television and film. So You Think You Can Dance Season 8 is the first television series we're covering with weekly podcasts and has allowed us to find our voice as well as actively contribute to the fan community. We hope that you'll enjoy our installments as they are posted to Pure So You Think You Can Dance!

Top 6 Power Rankings and Poll

I don’t know how I’m going to do this. There’s a clear-cut Top 4 that will probably happen, but there’s every chance there will be a mix-up. I really, really wish they would drop the bottom guy/girl combo. All three girls are so strong and I’d love them all to be in the Top 4.

And I’m not sure how they’re going to do the Top and Bottom tomorrow. Probably the Top Girl and Top Guy, but I’m going to list them in the order of how strong I think their night was, based on how I liked the routines, how I think you liked the routines, my perceptions of the dancer’s popularity and their growth.

Top Three
1. Sasha – Her contemporary with Kent was the best routine of Round One. Gorgeous and amazing and so surprising. Her solo was stellar. She had an alright (and fun) waacking routine with Rickey, but she ended on her lowest note of the night. Her biggest downfall might be that some people dislike what we see of her personality, but one of her biggest pluses is that she’s been visible all season, but she’s fought herself forward every step of the way.
2. Melanie – Her hip-hop with Twitch was also surprising, but it was the first routine. If it’s possible for her to be forgettable, her first routine is in the “least memorable” position. Her solo was one of the best ever and definitely the best this season, which is tough since it came on the heels of Sasha’s. Her ending routine with Tadd was a definite high note for them both. However, her biggest downfall is that people feel she hasn’t been challenged enough (hopefully tonight changed those minds) and that the judges have been too easy on her.
3. Caitlynn – I know everyone expects her to leave tomorrow, but she may be the dark horse. The complaints against Sasha’s perceived arrogance and the favoritism shown to Melanie may split the vote. And she had a great night. A solid samba with Pasha, her best solo yet and then the last routine of the night, which just happened to be a really amazing Sonya routine with Marko.

Bottom Four
4. Marko – His paso with Janette was excellent, but early in the night. His solo was strong, but not a huge stand-out considering Sasha and Melanie wrestling for the best solo of the night. But he had that phenomenal last routine with Caitlynn and he’s been the favorite guy most of the season.
5. Tadd – I loved his quirky routine with Ellenore, though there was some critique that there wasn’t much dancing. His solo wasn’t his strongest (he stood on his hand too long), but he ended on a high note with Melanie.
6. Rickey – His contemporary with Jaimie was really incredible, but Christina Applegate said it right for me – there’s some lack of intention or follow-through when he dances. It’s not entirely complete. His solos have been saving him the last few weeks and he’s picked up some fans. But his waacking routine with Sasha was probably the weakest of the second set of routines.

The gimmie answers is that Rickey and Caitlynn are going home tomorrow night and our Top 4 will be Melanie, Sasha, Marko and Tadd. Unless there’s a shakeup, which is entirely possible if people vote like crazy tonight to save somebody or fans assume Melanie and Sasha are safe. OR, if the judges decide that the Top 4 doesn’t have to be 2 guys or 2 girls. It’s hard to predict how this could go down if a shake-up happens. So, I need your help.

Who are YOUR Top 4? You can only pick 4, but you don’t have to pick 2 guys and 2 girls. Pick any 4 dancers you want, as long as they’re YOUR Top 4.

August 3, 2011 I Written By

SYTYCD Season 8 Top 6 Performance Music

Oh my! I can’t believe we’re this close to the end of Season 8. I can’t wait to see what great routines the show has in store for us tonight.

Melanie danced a Nappytabs hip hop with Twitch to: Nicki Minaj ft. Lil Wayne’s “Roman’s Revenge” – Roman's Revenge (feat. Lil Wayne) - Roman's Revenge (feat. Lil Wayne) - Single

Sasha danced a Tyce Diorio contemporary with Kent to: Me’shell NdegĂ©ocello’s “Fool of Me” – Fool of Me - Bitter

Marko danced a Dmitry Chaplin paso doble with Janette to: Antonia Gomez’s “Zorongo” – Zorongo (Traditional) - 2 On 1: Fabulous Flamenco! / La Gitarra Flamenca

Rickey danced his solo to: Justin Nozuka’s “After Tonight” – After Tonight - Holly

Tadd danced a Sonya Tayeh jazz (?) with Ellenore to: Beirut’s “The Gulag Orkestar” – The Gulag Orkestar - Gulag Orkestar

Caitlynn danced her solo to: Katie Thompson’s “What’s Love Got to Do With It” – What's Love Got to Do With It - KT LIVE

Rickey danced a Dee Caspary contemporary with Jaimie to: Trent Dabbs’s “Inside These Lines” – Inside These Lines - Your Side Now

Tadd danced his solo to: Yolanda Be Cool & Dcup’s “We Speak No Americano” – We No Speak Americano - We No Speak Americano - Single

Sasha danced her solo to: Lady Gaga’s “Teeth” – Teeth - The Fame Monster (Deluxe Version)

Caitlynn danced a Dmitry Chaplin samba with Pasha to: Kat DeLuna’s “Drop It Low” – Drop It Low - Drop It Low - Single

Marko danced his solo to: James Morrison’s “Wonderful World” – Wonderful World - Undiscovered

Melanie danced her solo to: Freestylers ft Belle Humble’s “Cracks” – Cracks (Flux Pavilion Remix) [feat. Belle Humble] - UKF Dubstep 2010

Sasha and Rickey danced a Kumari Suraj waacking routine to: Beyonce’s “Schoolin’ Life” – can’t find this on iTunes yet. I’ll keep looking.

Melanie and Tadd danced a Spencer Liff Broadway routine to: Shirley Bassey’s “(Where Do I Begin) Love Story” – (Where Do I Begin) Love Story - Shirley Bassey: Greatest Hits

Caitlynn and Marko danced a Sonya Tayeh jazz routine to: Florence + the Machine’s “Heavy in Your Arms” – Heavy In Your Arms - Lungs (Deluxe Edition)

I Written By

The Table Has It

This is a silly post I got the idea for last week (Sasha and Twitch made me think of it). It occurred to me that while routines with props can go either way, there are A LOT of routines choreographed around a table that seem to be highly memorable. So, I thought it’d be fun to look at some of those.

First, probably the most memorable table routine, the one that people generally think of when you say “the table routine” is from Season 3. Sabra and this week’s All-Star Neil dancing a Mandy Moore jazz routine.

Next memorable I’d say is the Travis Wall contemporary routine danced by Ellenore and Legacy in Season 6, the “Mr. and Mrs. Smith” routine.

Then, there’s the super-hot crossbreed of samba and hip hop that Dmitry and Nappytabs choreographed for Season 5’s Top 16, which featured several tables (and water!).

I also couldn’t help thinking of this Tyce Diorio-choreographed jazz routine with Season 7’s Kent and All-Star Courtney featuring one of my favorite Amy Winehouse tunes, “Amy, Amy, Amy” Amy Amy Amy - Frank.

Season 7 also had a phenomenally memorable Top 6 group routine which featured a table. Choreographed by Mia Michaels, it should’ve shown off eventual winner (and this week’s All-Star) LoFro, who was injured, but instead All-Star Allison (then and last week) took her place.

Here’s a video of LoFro performing it on tour:

Which brings us to the inspiration for this post, last week’s “Misty Blue” Misty Blue - Misty Blue, choreographed by Christopher Scott and danced so fabulously by Season 8’s Sasha and All-Star (of all time) Twitch.

All of this “evidence” that tables make for great routines *almost* makes me wish that Caitlynn and Mitchell’s Stacey Tookey choreography to “Turning Tables” Turning Tables - 21 had had a table in it instead of two armchairs and lamps. Except, it’s just so memorable on its own. I’ll include it anyway.

Can y’all think of any other great table routines I’ve forgotten? Can you think of a bad table routine ever in SYTYCD history? And you’re not limited to the American version of the show. Go for it!

UPDATE:

Thanks for commenter Anne who reminded me about Wade Robson’s Season 6 Top 20 routine, “Comanche.” I miss Wade so much. This is such a good one, check it out:

July 26, 2011 I Written By