SYTYCD 11 Top 20: Wall to Wall Excellence
Wedensday was a long day. The travel day started at 3:30am ET, but even with that I was in front of the TV for So You Think You Can Dance at 8pm PT (11pm ET) because there was no way I was going to miss out on an episode. The show was outstanding this week and helped me stay awake despite the long day. For the most part all of the performances were at least good, and many were far more than that. It was difficult to pair down my favorites to just three, but here they are:
#1 – Ricky & Valerie – Contemporary – Choreographed by Travis Wall: Ricky continues to impress. His lines, extension (which continues right through his toes) is incredible. Combine him with Valerie, who matched him move for move despite not being a contemporary dancer, it was an unbeatable duo. Their chemistry was also spot on. I’m excited to see how this partnership grows in the coming weeks.
#2 – Casey & Brooklyn – Argentine Tango – Choreographed by Miriam Larici & Leonardo Barrionuevo: When the rehearsal package ended, I said “this is going to be a mess.” Boy was I wrong! I love a good Argentine Tango and this did not disappoint. I feared Casey wasn’t going to be up to the attitude needed, but he delivered. Brooklyn was extraordinary with her leg work and her technique over all. Casey also delivered on the technique side. And, of course, Miriam and Leonardo delivered amazing choreography.
#3 – Rudy & Tanisha – Jazz – Choreographed by Sonya Tayeh: A classic Sonya routine performed beautifully by Rudy and Tanisha. In fact, Rudy reminded me a lot of season 4’s Mark, who channels Sonya’s choreography so well. This was a quirky, fun, awesome number that started the show off with a good jolt of energy!
Some other thoughts on this week’s show:
- I like how the eliminations were handled. Up front you hear who is in jeopardy and at the end of the show you find out who is going home. It’s a shame they’ve eliminated the solos, I assume that’s because of the dance crew thing (which I haven’t fully embraced).
- Afro Jazz was so-so this week. I had a hard time watching the actual dance since I couldn’t take my eyes off the costumes Zack and Jacque were stuck in. Those mutli-colored unitards were a complete distraction.
- I liked the West Coast Swing number Nick and Jessica did. The judges, especially Nigel, seemed really hard on them, and choreographer Benji, and I didn’t quite get what he was finding so wrong.
- Speaking of not understanding the judges, I didn’t think Serge and Carly had much chemistry, but the judges seemed to love them.
- I wasn’t a huge fan of the opening On The Town number. The choreography was done by the revival’s choreographer, Joshua Bergasse, and I wasn’t convinced that dance really captured the show. Time will tell if what we saw on the show will be on stage at the Lyric Theatre.
- I was okay with the elimination of Nick and Malene. I wasn’t particularly attached to them. Yes, I liked Nick in the swing number, but someone had to go and he was an okay choice. As for Malene, the telephone dance was only okay, so I’m okay she took a fall on that.
The day after the show, Travis Wall, Chris Scott, Mandy Moore and Tabitha & Napoleon were Emmy nominated for their SYTYCD season 10 choreography. DWTS’ Derek Hough was also nominated. Each of these talented artists delivered so much excellence on TV last year, it was great to see they were each nominated. We’ll get to see who wins in August.
Meanwhile, bring on next week’s SYTYCD!