Friday, April 23, 2010

So You Think You Can Be A SYTYCD All-Star?

(Look, Ma! I'm an All-Star! Kat is back!)

The 12 Returning All-Star Dancers for the upcoming season of SYTYCD have recently been revealed. I think it's a good cross-section of dancers that I'm happy to see again. I don't really understand how the nuts and bolts of the show are going to change. I mean, are we supposed to only vote for the non-all-star half of the pair, because otherwise people could be getting through based on a former contestants popularity. Tune in and find out, I guess. find out. I'm not sure what constitutes an All-Star, but "former champ" is not part of the criteria because no previous winners are returning. Also, there's nobody representing from Season 1 - but that hardly surprises me since the show often tries to forget the original Cat Deely-free season ever existed. SYTYCD really came into it's own in Season 2.

So here's a quick run down of whose returning listed in alphabetical order. We've got one dancer from Season 2, 5 dancers from Season 3 (my personal favorite), 4 dancers from Season 4, one dancer from Season 5 and one dancer from Season 6. After I started making the below list, the official SYTYCD website came out with its own very similar list, but I disagree on some of the most memorable dances, so I included links to the ones I liked best. Re-watching these dances made me very happy. It proves that when this show is on, it's really the best competition out there.

Stephen “tWitch” Boss
Originally Competed In: Season 4. Finished 2nd to Joshua
Dance Specialties: Hip Hop, Popping, Locking, Krump
Memorable Dance: w/ Katee performing Mia Michaels choreo to "Mercy"
Odds & Ends: partial to wearing fake plastic glasses

Comfort Fedoke
Originally Competed in: Season 4. Finished Top 8
Dance Specialties: Hip Hop
Memorable Dance: w/ tWitch performing Dave Scott choreo to "Forever"
Odds & Ends: Originally eliminated before top 10, but came back when Jessica got injured

Courtney Galiano
Originally Competed in: Season 4 (noticing a trend?) Finished 4th.
Dance Specialties: Contemporary, Jazz
Memorable Dance: w/ Mark Kanemura performing Sonya Tayeh choreo in "The Garden"
Odds & Ends: known for her tiny size. Had a strong starting partnership with the also-short Gev.

Anya Garnis

Originally Competed in: Season 3. Finished Top 12, was so awesome she went on tour anyway.
Dance Specialties: Standard and Latin Ballroom
Memorable Dance: w/ Danny Tidwell performing Tony Meredith choreo to "Girlfriend"
Odds & Ends: Fun fact: she is the original hot tamale on the now standard setting Hot Tamale Train.

Lauren Gottlieb

Originally Competed in: Season 3, finished 6th
Dance Specialties: Jazz, Contemporary
Memorable Dance: w/ Pasha Kovalev performing Shane Sparks choreo in "Transformers"
Odds & Ends: has assisted many of the choreographers before and after her season on developing dance pieces.

Neil Haskell
Originally Competed in: Season 3, Finshed 3rd
Dance Specialties: Jazz, Contemporary, Broadway
Memorable Dance: w/ Sabra Johnson performing Mandy moore choreo in "The Table Dance"
Odds & Ends: was known for his gymnastics-inspired moves.

Allison Holker
Originally Competed in: Season 2, finished Top 8
Dance Specialties: Contemporary, Jazz
Memorable Dance: w/ Ivan Koumaev performing Tyce Diorio choreo in "Why,”
Odds & Ends: She's the only one of these dancers I don't actively remember.

Mark Kanemura
Originally Competed in: Season 4, finished Top 6
Dance Specialties: Jazz, Hip Hop, Cultural Dance
Memorable Dance: w/ Chelsie Hightower performing Tabitha and Napoleon D’umo choreo in “Bleeding Love.”
Odds & Ends: Mark performed with Lady Gaga in The Monster Ball Tour, so if you watched any of those youtube videos where she falls during performances, you probably saw him too!

Pasha Kovalev
Originally Competed in: Season 3, Top 6
Dance Specialties: Standard and Latin Ballroom
Memorable Dance: w Sara Von Gillern performing Benji Schwimmer choreo to "Rockafeller Skank"
Odds & Ends: I have a total guy crush on Pasha. He and Anya are unbelievable together. He once did a solo dance with a mannequin on the show. It was weird.

Kathryn McCormick
Originally Competed in: Season 6, finished 3rd
Dance Specialties: Jazz/Contemporary
Memorable Dance: w Jakob Karr performing Desmond Richardson and Dwight Rhoden choreo to "At this Moment"
Odds & Ends: Probably would've won her season if she'd had one more week to build momentum in a Final 4, instead of having to go for the title in an unusually large Final 6 finale.

Ade Obayomi
Originally Competed in: Season 5, finished Top 6
Dance Specialties: contemporary and jazz
Memorable Dance: w/ Melissa Sandvig performing Tyce Diorio choreo in "This Woman’s Work,”
Odds & Ends: A great partner, I felt Ade was an under-appreciated talent in his season. I'm glad he's back.

Dominic “D-trix” Sandoval
Originally Competed in: Season 3, finished Top 8
Dance Specialties: Hip Hop, Breaking
Memorable Dance: w/ Sabra Johnson performing Shane Sparks Choreo in "Make It Work"
Odds & Ends: Dom was a part of Quest Crew that won Season 3 of America's Best Dance Crew with fellow SYTYCD fav, Hok.

Are there dancers not here I'd like to see? Sure! But lots of them are working on other shows. This is a good group. It just goes to show you how you can pick 12 all-stars and still have so many left over... hopefully for future seasons, if the format changes are a success! Also in the spirit of All-Stars I've been campaigning for the judges to pick lovable perennial also-ran Natalie for a spot in the competition. I'm hoping that she and the formerly mono-stricken Billy (Elliot/Jamie) Bell make it the main event this year. C'mon, judges! Do the right thing!

(Natalie: The All-Star Contestant!)

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