This week's comments, questions and concerns come without any technical dance knowledge and no actual dance skills ... just straight up love for "So You Think You Can Dance."
We did it! We finally made it to the final night of city auditions, landing us in Salt Lake City, Utah. Apparently "SYTYCD" heard my cry for ballroom last week and they delivered. So much ballroom in Salt Lake City and so much talent!
Salt Lake City
Guest Judge: Adam Shankman
Finally! A ballroom dancer and this season's very first hot tamale from Mary Murphy! Witney Carson stepped on stage to show off her Latin ballroom skills and to be perfectly honest, all the sexuality and sensuality talk made me feel so weird -- she's wearing braces, for heaven's sake! I'm a jerk, I know, and I almost instantly took back all my initial ehh-ness when she started moving those quick, high-heeled feet. She's young, beautiful and talented and on her way to Vegas.
Deanna Tomasetta will be one to watch! She comes from a big family, has a big smile and to say she had big talent would not only be poor English, it would be an understatement. Her audition to "I Can't Make You Love Me" stunned the judges and her sweet tears at Mary's reaction were so genuine and adorable. The judges loved her. Adam called her "captivating" (which she totally was) and that really sums it up. To Vegas she goes!
I am normally not one for the gimmicks and I generally roll my eyes when someone comes out to audition with more than just some thoughtful choreography, but Gene Lonardo shut me right up. His praying mantis schtick had my eyes in a full roll, but once he started to move with such precision and grace, I was pleasantly surprised. As the judges said, he had great skill and his individuality turned heads in all the right direction, directly to Vegas.
More ballroom! Lindsay Arnold, another young dancer (is it me or do they seem super young in Salt Lake City!?) hit the floor and owned that stage. Her Latin ballroom style was so technically skilled and she made it look like she was floating around the stage with her partner being merely a prop. In fact, I can't even remember what he looked like, I don't think I moved my eyes from her feet once. She got her ticket to Vegas and if I had to take a guess, I'd say she'll make her way to the Top 20.
This adorable, smiley, blonde dancer, Mariah Spears, (I know, pop music royalty right there) bopped onto the stage and when the judges asked her her style of dance, Adam Shankman spit out his drink. This sweet little thing was going to krump and krump she did! Mariah was really quite remarkable. All of the judges were wildly impressed and after succeeding in the choreography rounds, she's headed to Vegas!
A sad story and cute little smile -- Dareian Kujawa, you had me at hello! His audition was beautiful and the most moving one of the night for me. A critique from the judges had me scratching my head a bit, both Mary and Nigel made a note about his feet and maybe (okay, definitely) this is where my lack of dance knowledge comes in, I didn't even NOTICE his feet. Not one bit. His performance was so good and strong. Lucky for him the unfortunate feet were the only criticism the judges could find while they handed him his ticket to Vegas.
Johnny & Whitney
I really had a hard time collecting my thoughts on these next two. Johnny and Whitney, a ballroom pair, had an uphill battle to climb in my book after Johnny's "hitting on girls" (and I do mean "girls") bit. Though their technique was good, their lack of chemistry together had the judges sending them to the choreography rounds and unfortunately neither made it. Perhaps next year.
HOLY BANANAS! Leroy Martinez wins the night for me and made me type all of this in caps. (Sadly it was de-capped to protect your eyes. You're welcome.) Sadly he won't be making it to Vegas, but he is exactly the reason I love this show. This big teddy bear of a guy with a big heart and big dreams showed some seriously impressive dance moves, fully stocked with back flips and head spins. Unfortunately, after the choreography rounds, he didn't make it through to Vegas, but he touched the hearts of the judges and I'm hoping most America.
Is anyone else not-so-patiently waiting for goosebumps/tears/gasping? I have yet to see an audition I want to watch on YouTube 400 times. Anyone with me?
Still no craughing from Mary Murphy. #justsayin
The clips from next week's Vegas week literally concern me! The judges seem tougher than nails and it looks like a lot of injuries are going to occur. I'm concerned!