Tonight’s So You Think You Can Dance opened with a colorful “if Westside Story took place in Harlem” group performance to “Let the Groove Get In” by Justin Timberlake. And with our usual three judges (Paula Abdul, Jason Derulo, and Nigel Lithgoe) we discovered that Team Stage won the viewer votes by 52%.
First up in the competition were Jaja, Alexia, and Derek in a Stacey Tookey Contemporary piece about bravery. “All Waters” by Perfume Genius was the soundtrack for this eclectic group of dancers. The only critique would be to keep the emotion constant instead of snap in and out of it when facing the audience. All three dancers are safe this week.
Hip Hop choreographer JaQuel Knight worked with trio Megz, Moises, and Jim. The dance to “Whuteva” by Remy Ma was interesting but low content. This, one might suspect, is because Moises and Jim had a lot of difficulty getting into a more “down and dirty,” masculine character. It also looked like they were watching Megz to remember the choreography. Out of the three, Moises is the one in danger again this week.
Tovaris Wilson worked with Yorelis, JJ, and Edson in a Jazz dance to “Restart” by Sam Smith. Edson is a lovely dancer but he almost looked a little intimidated by the very strong ladies. JJ even grabbed the attention of yours truly right from the start. Edson was the dancer in danger from this group.
Marisa and Asaf were partners in a Jean Marc Genereaux Cha-cha to “+1” by Martin Solveig feat. Sam White. To be blunt the dance was difficult to watch. Marisa performed well but Asaf seemed to struggle with staying in character while manipulating his partner in the lifts. Marisa also played more to the audience than to Asaf who was supposed to be the object of her affection. Asaf is in danger while Marisa is safe to dance another week.
African Jazz with choreographer Sean Cheesman was next on the menu for Ariana, Gaby, and Burim. This particular piece was so memorable and unique as they pounded the stage like jungle creatures. The great thing about the performance is that the three, diverse dancers all supported each other and danced on par with each other. Unfortunately, Gaby was the only safe dancer out of the group.
Contemporary choreographer Justin Giles created a beautiful piece for Kate and Neptune to “Promise” by Ben Howard. These two dancers could not be more different and yet the piece was so cohesive and moving. Kate and Neptune need to do much more Contemporary this season although Kate was in danger of going home.
The most memorable and brilliantly executed dance of the evening was PharSide and Phoenix’s robotic routine for Virgil and Hailee to “Runnin’” by Noahplause. These two morphed into mechanical beings and stayed in character until they had walked off the stage. It is increasingly apparent that Hailee can do whatever she wills her body to do. Unsurprisingly, both dancers are safe after this world-class performance. If you missed tonight’s show, be sure to watch this performance. Maybe watch it twice!
Team Stage’s Contemporary group piece by choreographer Jaci Royal was gorgeous! The piece was all about holding each other up and sharing the work and the weight. There was even a stunning moment where all the dancers flawlessly went to the ground in a domino effect. It’s also worth mentioning the girls’ beautiful and very brave performances where they were manipulated and thrown around while maintaining their grace.
Team Street worked with legendary choreographer Marty Kudelka to “Break Ya Neck” by Busta Rhymes. The choreography was cool and it is worth repeating how strong the street girls are this season. They really stole the show with this one!
Your viewer votes saved dancers Ariana and Kate and the judges saved Edson and Asaf. That means that Moises and Burim went home this week.
Albuquerque viewers can see So You Think You Can Dance Monday nights at 7 p.m. on KASA Channel 2. Everyone can vote to save their favorite dancers from elimination on the SYTYCD website.