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SYTYCD: New York Auditions Part One

Plenty of familiar faces that were close to making last season returned for another chance at making it to the live shows.

Emily Carr: She set the bar high for the first audition of the night. I love that she is following in her sister’s footsteps when it comes to dance. While I can understand why the judges asked why Emily’s sister wasn’t auditioning, I just feel like they were overshadowing the person that is actually auditioning.

Evan DeBenedetto: Lex beat him out for the spot on Gaby’s team…which I know was a hard choice. So I wasn’t surprised to see him back or the judges comments. I think this is his year as well and we will see Evan in the Top 20.

Rachael Blanchard: I feel like sending her to the academy was a see if she would sink or swim moment for her. I think if anything the academy will help Rachael grow as a dancer and become better at the things she was lacking.

Kyle Bennett Jr: In FikShun’s final two last season. I always fun to see Twitch fired up over a good hip hop audition. I just enjoyed watching Kyle dance and I’m with Nigel if he can do other style he will shine this season.

Victoria Neukum: Nigel has me worried for a minute…I honestly didn’t think he would want to send her to the academy. Though I agree that the gymnastics are great but she does need to more dancing in her solos.

Desislava and Gratsiela Sandeva: While these twin sisters were not strong enough for the show but they were entertaining. I also think the had a great attitude.

Next week wraps up the New York auditions and the initial audition round. Then it will be time for the Academy week.

June 19, 2018 I Written By

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

SYTYCD: LA Auditions Part 2

I honestly don’t know what happen to my broadcast of the show last night but I missed the last two auditions. I just had a test screen up for at least ten minutes and of course started working again when the news interrupted. Thanks to the internet I could watch the last two auditions. Also, realizing that I do miss the choreography round mainly for those dancers that are good but their solos aren’t all that great.

Tessa: I really liked her and is the first person that I had the thought she could be in the top 20. I also think the choreographers would love her.

Jay Jay: After being cut during academy week last season, he booked the Shaping Sound tour. Working with Travis Wall has paid off and can see the boost of confidence in him. Hopefully, it will also help him make it through academy week this season and maybe even the top 20.

CJ Butler: Such a heartbreaking story and I thought he might get a ticket to the academy. However, that wasn’t the case but it just shows how healing having an outlet like dance is, and love that the judges took the time to comfort him. Who know with a little bit of polish he could make it through next season.

Nicole Clonch: Has been Season 2 winner Benji’s competitive partner for the last three years. She must trust him a lot because those lifts and tricks were insane…she wasn’t kidding about becoming a human pretzel. I have looked up some of their routines to get a bit more of the dancing and not just the tricks. I feel like the judges asking what else she has trained was to help make their decision on whether or not to send her though to the academy. I personally loved that she said tap(even if it’s only a little bit) cause it’s a favorite of Nigel’s.

I hope for the New York auditions next week there won’t been anything from preventing me from watching the show.

June 12, 2018 I Written By

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

SYTYCD Season 15: LA Auditions Part One

Happy and excited to say that So You Think You Can Dance is back for its fifteenth season. Sorry I haven’t made any posts about it until now but my schedule has finally cleared up so that I can. Looks like there are a few changes to the new season…there will be a top 20 again which was revealed at the end of the episode. Also, there will be no choreography round during the initial auditions. So basically either you wow them or you don’t, if you wow them then you are sent to the Academy. I’m not sure how I feel about this however, it leads me to believe there will be so brutal cuts during Academy week.

Here are just a few of my thoughts about tonight’s episode.

~Gaevin “Rated G: Cool to see that he teaches b-boying and that he was inspired by Twitch. Also, like his confidence when it comes to learning dance styles.

~oh hi Maddox…he’s so cute

~Marcus Nyemchek (Kiki’s brother), Allen Genkin (S12 injury took him out) and Magda Fialek (Kiki’s partner): I really liked that they auditioned as a trio and I don’t think that has been done before, so it was refreshing. Magda is amazing. Out of the boys Allen seems to be stronger when it come to showmanship, but I do think they were all worthy of going through to the Academy.

~Taylor Haines: Though she didn’t make to the Academy, it is incredible to see what she can do and that nothing is going to hold her back.

~Jay Jackson: Interesting story on how drag chose him and loved his personality. I did understand the dilemma about putting him through to the Academy. I want to see what he can do as a dancer and not as a drag queen.

~Alexis Gilbert: Loved that she came back and that she has been training various styles in preparation to audition for the show again.

~Eddie Hoyt: A fantastic tapper and no surprise that Nigel gave him a standing ovation. The dance battle with Twitch was my favorite part of the night…thanks Nigel.

Looking forward to seeing what the rest of the season has to offer.

June 4, 2018 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.

Top 4 Performance Finale: Thoughts

Tonight’s show was jammed packed with dance, which is normal for the top 4 performance finale. So each of the top 4 had 4 dances to perform plus a solo. As a viewer it is just a lot to take in, so I’m going to give my thoughts on each dancer and the night they had. Before I get to that just want to say Congratulations to Cat Deeley on the announcement of her pregnancy. Granted she announced this new on Twitter over the weekend and I think Nigel caught her off guard.
Hailee Payne (Jazz): Hailee is someone who has really grown on me. When the live shows started we really didn’t know anything about her because she wasn’t really featured in the audition process. It was the robot routine with Virgil that made her a standout. Hailee always seemed to be able to channel the character of every dance she has done. Though for me the Broadway numbers seemed to be her best. I think she could have a career on Broadway.

Virgil Godson (Hip hop): I sure I am not alone in the fact that I have compared Virgil to Fikshun all season. Honestly, I’m a little disappointed that partnership didn’t happen. Virgil truly is just a bundle of joy and I just love watching him dance. He is a fan favorite but I don’t think it will be enough for him to win. However to be the last man standing is a win in my book. Also, he and Josh killed that dance together.

Jaja Vankova (Krump/Animation): Hands down Jaja has been the best female hip hop dancer that the show has had since Comfort. I truly have enjoyed watching her become a chameleon of dance this season. She has taken every challenge this season and has done well.

Gaby Diaz (Tap): It took all season to finally see Gaby do tap number. The dance was amazing and it was nice to see Zack back. All season Gaby has been fantastic and possibly the judges favorite. I think she proved that she is more than just a tap dancer.

So who will win? I got a gut feeling it will be between Jaja and Gaby. It usually a hard decision for me to pick and this season is no different but going on tonight’s performances I think Gaby will the winner but it will be a close call.

So now we get to wait a week to find out who wins season 12 of SYTYCD. I hope I am not the only one that doesn’t want to wait. Also, the fact they are directly competing with the premier of DWTS is not exactly a smart idea. So if you watch both shows make sure you set you DVRs to record on of them.

September 7, 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 8 to Top 4: Thoughts

It’s hard to believe that we are almost to the end of this season and I still not sure of who I think might win. I enjoyed the Addam’s Family theme of the opening number, just sort of wish Tyce used the music from the musical. Team Street won the night again with 52% of the vote. Travis and Twitch’s exits are just too much fun, though this week they asked social media for help and I was hoping they’d pick leap frog to leave the stage.

Virgil & Jasmine: Sean Cheesman (African Jazz)
“African Jazz Ant Man” really Nigel. Nigel is right I don’t think that Virgil has had a bad night on the show. What I like about Virgil is that he just an entertainer and had the ability to adapt to whatever the show has thrown at him. Love how he got excited about keeping the envelope that said he was safe.

Derek & Jamie: Tyce (Contemporary)
Just as Derek is having a break through, he is eliminated. Like the judges, I think he has great technique but seemed to have trouble with connecting to the emotion/story of the dances.

Hailee & FikShun: Luther Brown (Hip hop)
It was easy to figure out that I would like these two paired together. While I didn’t really care for the dance itself, I did enjoy watching them dance it. Hailee is in my personal top 4 so I hope she stays.

Megz & Paul: Jean Marc (Paso Doble)
I felt bad for Megz, she gave her all in this dance but still fell short of the technique that it takes to truly pull off this dance. However, I think if she had a little more time to practice it may have been a little better.

Neptune & Kayla: Ray Leeper
Neptune was the dark horse of the street side to me. I thought he has done well all season and I hoped he was the one that stayed.

Jim & Comfort: Pharside and Pheonix (Hip hop)
I actually think Jim wasn’t that bad but I can see what the judges were saying. He doesn’t seem quite comfortable with this style, so it’s not quite believable.

Gaby & Robert: Mandy Moore
Mandy Moore did it again…created another memorable routine. This was my favorite dance of the night.

Jaja & Ricky: Al Blackstone (Broadway)
Glad Ricky was given time off from Broadway to be an all star. Nigel was right, Jaja does look like Amy Adams. I love how she always has the character down and she had the skills too.

Bottom 4: Derek, Hailee, Neptune and Megz
Going home: Derek and Neptune

August 24, 2015 I Written By

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

Top 10 to Top 8: Thoughts

My favorite part of the season is here…All Stars and solos are back. It’s just something about when the all-stars join the show the dancers step up their game. There are no more saves, so whoever has the lowest votes from each team will go home. Also, there was another injury, this time it’s JJ and her ribs. Before the show gets started, Jennifer Lopez had some news. The winner of this season gets the chance to dance in her Las Vegas show.

Hailee & Brandon: Warren Carlyle (Broadway)
Such a fun, fast paced routine. This is what I like about Broadway numbers. I really can see the Liza Minnelli and Lady Gaga, when it comes to Hailee. It was just another fantastic way for her to show her personality. Side note you can find Brandon dancing in Brittney Spears in Vegas.

Derek & Kayla: RJ Durell & Nick Flores (Jazz)
Okay so not going to lie…I had to re watch this one because I couldn’t take my eyes of Kayla. I sometimes forget who is the one competing. We definitely saw a different side of Derek this week.

Virgil & Comfort: Chris Scott
This was just too cute. Chris Scott does it again…from the music selection to the dancers was just amazing. I love how effortless that Virgil and Comfort made that dance look. Virgil’s personality is infectious (such a goofball)…loved his happy dance with Cat.

Megz & Marco: Ray Leeper (Jazz)
This was another one I had to watch again…this time it was the song choice…it makes me think of “Center Stage” every time.
This was just a simply a fun routine and just makes you want to dance with them. Megz, like Nigel said, stays true to herself which is nice. Anyone else surprised to learn her parents were ballroom dancers.

Edson & Jaime: Travis Wall
Hate that Edson was eliminated tonight…moments like this I really miss the results show. Thankful he left on such a high note. One of the best of the night and Travis deserves to win an Emmy.

Neptune & Jasmine: Pharside & Pheonix
Halloween a few months early? Just a fun concept and good to see Neptune in his element.
Also, Nigel said the wrong dancers name again. This time it was Sasha who didn’t get the credit for dancing “Misty Blue” with Twitch.

Jim & Jessica: Dee Caspary
So weird to see Jim struggle in rehearsals. I’m not sure but maybe the pressure of the competition got to him a little bit. Over it was a beautiful dance but I felt that the story was a little lost…maybe it had something to do with not connecting with his partner. Agreed with everything Jason said.

Jaja & Alex:  Nakul (Bollywood)
This was so much fun…especially to see yet another side of Jaja. She is my favorite street dancer and has a really chance of winning.

Gaby & Joshua: Pharside & Phoenix
My favorite of the two Pharside & Phoenix routines tonight. Gaby is the other chameleon on the show. I have a feeling it may come down to Gaby and Jaja in the final two.

Bottom 4: Megz, JJ, Derek and Edson Going home: JJ and Edson

Stay tuned for tour info.

August 17, 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 One

First off let me just start out by saying that the next round of auditions are back in Las Vegas, besides Vegas Week is more fun to say. With the format change I was somewhat unsure as to what to expect from this week. I do like that they kept the teams separated and it seemed to allow the dancers a little more time to rest…well if they were actually able too. Travis and tWitch join the judges to see their team for the first time. While they don’t have a say in who stays or goes, they can offer the judges there input.

ROUND 1: One minute solos.
One minute really isn’t enough time to really show what you got, so the dancers needed to have their A game ready. The static thing going on with the sound while trying to watch this first part.

ROUND 2: Choreography

Team Stage is up first and they get to learn a contemporary piece from their own mentor Travis Wall. Since it was Travis’s choreography, he seemed to act more as a judge.

Team Street takes on the choreography of Jamal Sims. Here’s where things get a little rough. Many of the street dancers are freestyle and have never tried to learn choreography. So the first round was almost a blood bath…well for the guys anyways. The girls out shined many of the guys and began to agree with tWitch, that his team could be made up of all girls, Nigel, definitely lit a fire under them with some tough love.

Round 3:

Team Stage had an hour to learn a tough Broadway routine from “On The Town” choreographer Josh Bergasse. Things start to fall apart for team stage. We also saw the first injury to take a dancer out of the competition and that’s just heartbreaking.

Team Street worked with one of my favorites Dave Scott. A much better day that the first. Loved seeing tWitch being a mentor and helping the contestants ease their nerves, and it’s also fun to watch his reactions while watching the dancers.

At the end of part one 36 Stage, 38 Street dancers remain. Next week we continue with the last two rounds, which includes the dreaded group round.By the end of the episode the top 20 will be revealed.

June 30, 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.

New York Auditions

New York wraps up the first round of auditions, before Vegas week. Thankfully, there was some more diversity in which auditions we saw. Even saw a few of the bad auditions, not sure why I thought the breaker ballet guy was going to be good.  We were treated with a little preview of Vegas week. Even with the format change, Vegas is still going to be an intense week.

STAGE 30

Alexia Meyer: Great dancer. What I loved about her was her musicality. She had movements that went with certain beats of the song.

Ryan Raffloer: His mom forced him to dance, too funny. Great solo for a ballroom dancer. Definitely, saw the Dmitry reference and maybe the attitude of Neil Haskell.

Darious Drooh: Loved seeing him and he friend dance the choreography from Paula’s Cold Hearted Snake music video.

STREET 21

Virgil Gaston: His smile did remind me of FikShun. He has also put in a lot of work since his audition in season 8. I can see him in the top 10 stage dancers.

Korey Cleveland: Honestly, even though I thought he was good, I really want to see him give that 90 day chip to Nigel.

Justin Ballasy: The first example of a style that could go towards either street or stage. Justin is an amazing tapper/hoofer but I agree with the judges that he need to work on his musicality.

 

Final total of dancers moving on to Vegas 219. Street: 105  Stage: 114

Side note: Great to see an update on season 11 winner Ricky. I tried to spot him at the Tony Awards but had no luck.

June 22, 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.

Los Angeles Auditions

So tonight’s episode we are given a little more information for Vegas week. Team Stage will face choreography from Sonya, Josh Vergas, and Travis Wall. Team Street will face choreography from Dave Scott, Jamal Sims, and Nappy Tabs.

So Nigel stated last week that the LA auditions were some of the best auditions ever…well for this season at least. He wasn’t wrong the show started off strong but sort of lost steam for me. This episode was heavy on Team Street side of the auditions that we got to see. We did get to see some of team stage but most were lost in the montages. Seriously, wish the producers would show an equal amount from each team.

So I started to write down my standout but I decided I just wanted to enjoy the show. I love seeing SYTYCD Alumni at the auditions. Also love seeing familiar faces return for another chance, in particular, Jaja. If she isn’t in the top 20 this year, I may throw something at my tv. So moving on to Vegas were 29 Stage dancers and 24 Street dancers.

 

Team Stage: 84 Team Street: 84

June 15, 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.