We’re in for a treat tonight on So You Think You Can Dance. In the empty third judge’s chair, instead of Shane Sparks, Dan Karaty, or Mia Michaels, we have Debbie Allen, from the many Fame creations, the film, TV show, and even the reality show. Before Dancing With the Stars and So You Think You Can Dance, she was the person we thought of as a modern dance authority. And here she is tonight to let us know what she thinks of these dancers. Part of me is half expecting to see Leroy walking onto the stage, but sadly he passed away a few years earlier.
Debbie is asked what she thinks of the standards of the dancers this year, and she finds them highly skilled and trained, including the break dancers, saying that requires just as much technique. She sees it as not unlike being at her dance academy. She also particularly enjoys that the dancers get to work with all these different choreographers, increasing their “dance vocabulary.” Debbie thinks they’re great kids, too, after seeing them in the dressing and makeup rooms as she was getting her fake eyelashes and hair put on. That’s right; she admits to it.
Mary Murphy is asked who has surprised her the most, and she cites Dominic Sandoval, agreeing with Debbie that it takes a lot of good technique and talent to be a B-boy, and not only is he not letting them down, he’s knocking her socks off. If he keeps going like this her hair will stand on end. Not sure if that’s something I want to see. She doesn’t see the cocky personality from him they saw in the beginning, just a hardworking young man. Nigel Lythgoe says he’s hugely pleased not just by the great dancers, but also the choreographers. He notes, though, that it’s getting a littler personal, as someone on a website said they didn’t like the ugly old guy with dentures and a cat on his head. He notes Cat Deeley has never been on his head. Hi Nigel. I don’t think you’re ugly, old, have dentures, or have Cat on your head. I do sometimes worry about your decision-making skills, though.
First up are Sara Von Gillern and Jesus Solorio. Our extra tidbits to fill up the whole two hours tonight are finding out what all the dancers’ ambitions are outside of dance. Sarah mentions being a recent Colorado State University graduate with a degree in journalism. She would like to do freelance articles that combine that with her skills in public relations. Jesus would like to donate his time helping children, He wants to pay it forward. Last week dancing the paso doble was very dramatic for them and Sara was very relieved after they finished.
This week Sara and Jesus choose krumping out of the hat, and will learn the dance from Lil ‘C who explains we’ll see unorthodox moves, such as sliding, jumping, stepping, and chest pops. He also has them doing something called the “bathroom stall.” Imagine picking up dates on the dance floor with that move. They dance to It’s Okay (One Blood) by The Game featuring Junior Reid, and he completely throws himself into everything, just like last week. Debbie tells him she likes the way he puts so much energy and power into his dancing and says she can’t keep her eyes off him. Mary tells Sara it’s quite a contrast from last week in her little ballroom dress and high heels to coming out forcefully onto the stage. She also thinks Lil ‘C put the war on Jesus and started a fire. Nigel likes what Lil C did with krumping as well, as it’s not just kicking butt, although he does believe Sara is a gangsta. He asks Jesus where a contemporary dancer like himself learned to move like that, and Jesus explains it was from being mad at the grapes. Huh?
Shauna Noland and Cedric Gardner are now paired up after losing their partners last week. Her ambition is to be a techno singer, saying she enjoys singing in the shower and her car. Cedric’s ambition is to build toys and own a toy company, spreading his imagination to the kids of the world. Maybe he and Jesus can team up on some venture. Mia Murphy, after being the vote to save Cedric last week, will be teaching them contemporary. She wants him and Shauna to tap into their guts, and says this piece is a celebration of goodbye. Is that a good thing for two people that were in the bottom three last week? Cedric says she is so organic and the first thing she had them do was throw their bodies on the floor over and over until they felt comfortable with it.
Dancing to I Thought We Had by The Family Stand, Shauna and Cedric run up and fall on the stage, and then do some spastically odd dancing. He sits on the side and cries while she continues, and he then comes out to join her. It’s very odd, then again it’s contemporary, and I think sometimes in the dance world that means weird. Debbie tells Shauna she doesn’t know how she ever ended up in the bottom three, as she is wonderful with so much strength. She wonders if maybe it was the fault of the choreography before. She wants Cedric to know that the competition is about so much other than technique, such as the soul and spirit of a dancer. She says he touches her every time he dances, and what she likes most is that he’s making it cool for other dancers to learn things like contemporary.