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Freelance entertainment writer, martial arts instructor, and mother of two.

So You Think You Can Dance, July 7 – Drinking the Performance Juice


Mia thought this was absolutely stunning. It was so gorgeous, everything about it. Their connection was there. Lauren is the perfect female dancer. There’s the athlete, there’s the technique, then there was that soul. Usually she’s lacking in soul. Mia isn’t sure if Kent was allowing her to feel safe and vulnerable, but she had a great night tonight. It was beautiful work for Kent. He was a solid male contemporary dancer and had a great evening too.

Adam can sum it up and say he felt a little embarrassed, because it became so honest and the connection became so real, that he felt it was too intimate and real, and he felt weird to be watching it, and that’s a really good thing. He loved it, because they both became sensual and honest, and it embodied everything that it’s supposed to be about in young love being born. Nigel points out it’s the beauty of the choreography as well.

Robert is most excited to work with Ashley, because she has the drive to do anything and works so hard. Ashley is looking forward to them being so alike, yet knows they won’t get anything done. They work with Jean Marc and France on the quickstep. The piece is about a powerful man and a woman who wants to take that power. France points out you can’t fake the quickstep; you have to get used to it. Robert and Ashley both have a hard time in rehearsal. Tonight they dance to Man With the Hex by The Atomic Fireballs, and while I’m no ballroom expert, I feel the do really well with this.

NIgel notes it really is the dance of death, and worse than that, Robert and Ashley were asked to be in character, go into the quckstep, and stay in character. Robert probably had more of a close hold than anyone on this show, He has to be careful the elbow doesn’t hit down there as it was too low. If you talk to Jean Marc, he’ll say the hydraulic system of the dance is like a motor car, as the wheels do this, but hte head stays where it is. Robert was jumping around a bit, and the minute he does that he becomes stiff-legged. Overall, Nigel thinks his shape wasn’t quite right, but his character and the dance were. He has something over ballroom dancers in that he trained in technique, so he has that going for him. Nigel thought Ashley was absolutely lovely, and she looked like she was enjoying herself.

Mia notes they got through the quickstep, and it wasn’t the train wreck it could have been. The music was fighting for her artistically, and while Nigel thinks it had swing with the Charleston in there, Mia feels it was just so harsh. For her, she felt Robert’s legs were too far apart, and it goes back to her telling him last week ballet would be good for him. They got through it. Adam is the same way, feeling the music is more jive, but they did get through it. They were totally committed, and he saw Robert looking at her like please let us get through this, but that’s okay, because they were locked in a partnership and served each other beautifully.

What Billy is looking forward to most working with Jose is that he has the groundedness and while he himself has the tecnique, and hopefully they’ll come together. Jose is looking forward to Billy’s contemporary, but isn’t looking forward to his high kicks, and he’s worried he’ll get kicked in te face. Billy is worried they might clash in rehearsal because they’re backgrounds are so different. They work with Sean Cheesman on an African routine, on a story about the hunter (Jose) and his prey (Billy). It’s superfast and aggressive, with them throwing each other around. Sean says it should look like a cave drawing. Jose wants to kill Billy badly, as he has a family to feed. They’re dancing to Mickey Hart’s The Hunt. One thing this does show is Jose’s lack of tecnique next to Billy’s, but the emotion and feeling is there. It’s great for that, and their differences worked well for the aggressiveness.

Nigel liked the concept. Billy played a cat twice tonight, and it felt a little bit like a Broadway cat to him, instead of a feral animal, and if we look at African dance, they don’t point their toes, and it’s a really powerful creature. It’s a human being, but still a creature that is out to get the other. Yet, it wasn’t powerful enough from either of them, but he loved the choreography. He thought the dancers could have brought more to the feeling.

Mia doesn’t know if Billy was so much a jaguar, but no matter what animal he was, she would love that animal, like a snake and a cat, and she would want him in her house for sure. She thought he was amazing and lost the physicality at moments, but it was cool, as he was all twisted and disgustingly wrong. Jose went for it, but it wasn’t enough. For her it was his weakest performance. He attacked it, but didn’t always hit the lines.

Adam tells Billy there’s a moment where you have to let go of your lines, as they won’t let you go all the way through. For Jose it was the closest to his style, but when he jumps, he has to keep bring his knees higher and hit down lower.

It’s going to be a tough night Thursday for everyone. The judges are going to have to make a tough decision. They’re going to have to let one of their favorites go. And on top of it, they might be getting devastating news about Alex, who seemed to be on his way to winning the show.

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