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

So You Think You Can Dance, July 13 – Jesse and the Missing Osmond


This is the most important week so far for the contestants on So You Think You Can Dance. If they make it through this week, they get to final ten to start competing with the All-Stars as their partners. Maybe it’s just me, but it almost seems like it should have been the other way around, with the All-Stars first to cut their teeth a little, then be in it on their own in the final ten. With just six couples, yet two hours to fill, each couple will dance two itmes.

Glittery-eyed Cat Deely announces the judges for tonight’s performances. Joining Nigel Lythgoe and Mary Murphy on the panel are Jesse Tyler Ferguson, and Sonya Tayeh. Jesse admits to being a big fan of the show, and notes he’s also spent time on Broadway and working at theme parks, so he knows he way around a jazz square.

Sasha Murphy and Alexander Fost worked with Tony Meredith and Melanie Palatin on the paso doble. She calls it a battle with love and hate, and masculinity and femininity. He explains “they both like it rough.” Familiar with Sasha’s work, I think she’ll win the battle. They dance tonight to Alley Dash March of the Trolls by Taylor Long/Rick Powell, and it’s a different paso from what we’re used to, in that there’s no cape. Sasha is definitely the stronger one here, and I think it could have stood to be stronger. She grabs him and kisses him at the end in a hard way.

Nigel asks if the kiss was choreographed, and Sahsa claims it just kind of happened. Nigel thinks it was a good routine in that they recognized Sasha’s strength and kept her that way, to the point where Alexander was challenged to keep up with her. It did get a little sloppy at one point, but Sasha is a strong, great character. Mary asks for an ole. She notes the girl doesn’t have to always be the cape, she can be the bull as well, and Sasha did it all. Alexander did get sloppy, but stayed in character.

Jesse knows Sasha had a hard time in rehearsal, because her bra was coming off, but she’s strapped in now, and every time he sees her she’s a pillar of strength, although Alexander came up to her level tonight. Sonya tells Sonya she rocks her socks on a regular basis. She’s all about strength in women, and every time she comes onto this show, she dies for it. She doesn’t always trust Alexander’s partnering. He notes that Tony and Meredith were dedicating this dance to a friend battling cancer.

Jordan Casanova and Tadd Gadduang worked with Travis Wall this week, who notes this routine is a metaphor for the women who take advantage of weak men. Jordan is playing a vulture, and Tadd a deserted wanderer. She’s evil, and it’s painful, very dark, and heavy. Brotsjor by Olafur Arnalds is the backdrop of this piece, and it’s amazing from the first few seconds. It’s  just awe-inspiring.

Mary calls is beautiful, dark, and magnificent. She thinks Travis outdid himself again with the perfect symphony between style, movement, and technique. Every week she sys Tadd is a surprise, but it is no surprise tonight that he danced like that right now. Jordan just demolished the whole thing. Jesse jokes Travis took the classic “Vulture stalks boy, boy almost succumbs to vulture, boy kills vulture” story that we all know so well and made it this brilliant, beautiful thing. He notes they’ve been saying how great the girls are this year, but with what Tadd just did, it proves he’s in it to win it. Apparently he’s also an Idol fan.

Sonya really wishes she could swear a lot. It’s the true artistry that makes her want to cry. Sad dances do that to her too, but this is true conviction, belief in it, a cohesive unit, and technique, and both of them are unstoppable. Nigel jokes about the happy little story it was. He notes it had the audience cheering that the little bird was dead. Just the fact that Travis took a B-Boy and put him in this contemporary style, then allowed him to do breaking as well is shocking. But it took two of them, and the pair of them were tremendous.

Ryan Ramirez and Ricky Jaime worked with Spencer Liff on a Broadway routine about a guy waiting for his date to show up when a beautiful poster suddenly comes to life. Ricky knows the character will be difficult, because if he’s not smooth, he’s a bit goofy. They dance tonight to All I Need is the Girl by Frank Sinatra. Because I think this pair should have left a few weeks ago, I didn’t want to like this routine, but I couldn’t help it. Part of it, though, is just this style that I really love.

Jesse mentions that he’s such great fans of Ryan’s and Ricky’s, yet there was a glass ceiling on it, like their ability is more than what the performance allowed them to do. It felt underwater, a little muted. Sonya also feels with that being said, execution is the key, yet she felt they were questioning it the whole time, and letting it simmer a little too much.


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