Wednesday, September 02, 2009

SYTYCD Canada - A-teen A-team

So You Think You Can Dance Canada - Top 18 Performance Night - Ep. 208
Judges: Jean-Marc Généreux, Tré Armstrong, Luther Brown, Mary Murphy

Maybe I'm just on a high because Glee is about to start (TONIGHT! WEDNESDAY. 9pm! FOX! (Global in Canada) WATCH!) and I listened to Cory Monteith's (Canadian y'all eh!?) rendition (from the pilot) of "Can't Fight this Feeling" all day long (and I do mean ALL. DAY. LONG. OH MAKES ME SO HAPPY! 53x in one afternoon alone! Can you say obsessed?) but I thought there were so many A's or A-'s in this week's performances. Was I just being nice or did they totally bring it?

While it's hard to compete with the memory of the awesome first seasoners (Miles! Nico! Allie! Vincent! Lisa! Lara! Arassay! Danny! etc. etc. etc), and while the second season dancers keep having to live up to the judges hype that these are the "BEST TOP 20 DANCERS EVAH!", I'm slowly growing convinced. Maybe not EVAH but at least ONE OF THE BEST top 20's EVAH. Cause I REALLY don't know who I want out after this episode.

Also of note, is it me or does Mary seem more calm here in Canada? She seems more articulate and thoughtful. There's still the Mary Scream, but generally she seems classier and calm up here (and not as annoying as she's been getting lately). Maybe she's not getting enough sugar in Toronto. Our Large IS a US Medium.

Oh, I'd also like to point out that I was honoured to be invited to contribute to So You Think You Can Dance Social blog, which I already read before this, so that was kinda nice! I'm still not sure what to contribute since they are pretty great and comprehensive already, so for now I may just repeat these posts until I figure out what I can add (suggestions?), but head over there for more SYTYCD news and views! And they even have a dedicated section for So You Think You Can Dance Canada which is where I'll be posting my stuff!

Melanie Mah
Cody Bonnell
Style: Krump
Choreographed by: Lil C
Song: "Buck N' Roll" - The J-Squad
Grade: A-

Contemporary dancer Melanie Mah was my front runner girl before tonight (well, she and Jayme Rae could battle it out but I gotta lean towards hometown girl Mel!) but then she got Krump this week.

Now she's REALLY my front runner girl. Whod'havethought? Cody was adorable but his smooth hip-hop still showed through too much. It looked good, but just next to Melanie, who was just slamming it, he got dominated over by the little Chinese pixie. WOW. Melanie. WOW.

Okay, I know some people are bugged by her open mouth thing (like my sister and her friends who all hate her (man you Asian girls ARE bitchy aren't you?)) but it didn't bother me here and just sort of added to her buckness. (You know I just had to use that word!)

Here's the video of Melanie M. and Cody's Krump:

Tara-Jean Popowich
Everett Smith
Style: Salsa
Choreographed by: Tony Meredith and Melanie LaPatin (with Francis and Natalie assisting)
Song: "Aña Pa' Mi Tambor" - La Excelencia
Grade: B+

Okay, last week I loved Everett more than TJ, but this week I thought TJ shook her way into my heart. Still love Everett but while he did a great job with the Salsa, it still wasn't all there yet and needed a bit more strength and confidence, especially in those movements in between the big moments.

While TJ's outfit and shaking rendered her a bit towards the pole side of things, she stayed classy and danced her Salsa superbly and stole the show (and that's saying a lot since all the bare skin on her means nothing to me).

Here's the video of Tara-Jean and Everett's Salsa:

Kim Gingras
Emanuel Sandhu
Style: Theatre
Choreographed by: Sean Cheesman
Song: "Maybe This Time" - Connie Fisher (song from Cabaret)
Grade A

You know I'm not a big Emanuel fan. He could be a great dancer, but last year's audition of arrogance, and even the little slip-ups this year, is irking me, and you have to win me over BIG to make me forget, because I don't. I don't always buy the attitude makeover (probably why I had a hard time truly loving Brandon). He might have actually changed himself around and humbled himself, but I have watched way too many seasons of Big Brother and Survivor to know better (and to know better that I need to stop watching those shows, yet I keep falling for it!).

But that was kinda great y'all! Okay, so the whole dance was sort of built around Emanuel's strength's (and sometimes looked straight out of a figure skating routine, but then again, there's a reason he was an Olympic figure skater), but hey, it worked and he showed it! And even Kim (who I, for no logical reason, do not really like) totally brought it! And they really need to thank Sean Cheesman for designing a dance that worked REALLY well for them, and that second half was just outstanding!

You know my rants about Tyce DiOrio? Here's proof that "Theatre" (I guess our way of saying Broadway without referring to New York City) can actually be great! Nigel Lythgoe, you need to take note and import Sean over to the US version. PUHLEASE.

Here's the video of Kim and Emanuel's Theatre:

Amy Gardner
Vincent Desjardins
Style: Contemporary
Choreographed by: Blake McGrath
Song: "When You Say My Name" - Mario Spinetti
Grade: A-

What a dark piece that reminds me of Kayla and Kupono's drug dance. And Amy and Vincent were totally invested in it. Amy made up for last week and gave it her all, while Vincent is just proving that he can do anything. He just naturally exudes strength without needing to pulsate muscle and transforms himself into a lean limber body for this routine. Vincent, who seems SOOOO sweet and lovely (and while at the live performance last week, noticed that at the end of the show, the other dancers seemed drawn to him the most, like he was a big brother to the group or something) made a wicked wicked... well... wicked control freak.

Loved the routine, loved the dance. I think Amy is still a step behind Vincent, who truly controls their pieces (and not just in the "storyline" of the dance) but she's making huge improvements fast, which is a good sign.

Here's the video of Amy and Vincent's Contemporary:

Jayme Rae Dailey
Daniel Dory
Style: Dancehall
Choreographed by: Jaeblaze
Song: "So Fine" - Sean Paul
Grade: A

Considering I kinda hate Sean Paul, this dance, the choreo and the way Daniel and Jayme Rae danced it is making me reconsider the song, which is always THE sign of a great dance on SYTYCD (I've since loved "Battlefield" and "Sexy Back" after being SYTYCDized). I won't say I LURVE the song yet but I do LURVE Daniel and Jayme Rae and now Jaeblaze (is that right? It's one word? It's not a typo?) for giving us this Dancehall choreo. Mary, who has never seen this style before, loved it and wanted to jump up on stage and dance with them, and I have to agree. I kinda wanted to groove and now I feel like going to a club. Who's with me?!

Jayme Rae, (who kinda looked like Meadows Soprano tonight, no?) totally bounced and grooved her little butt off! As usual! I'm glad she's proving far beyond what could have been simply a twins gimmick and is a fantastic individual dancer (though, while her sister didn't make it, I didn't remember her to be any worse, so I wonder where they differed in the auditions?).

And Daniel is showing that last week wasn't just a fluke and this guy, who we barely saw in the auditions, is a force to reckon with. Seriously, why didn't they show his auditions? Luckily his dancing is quickly making up for the lack of earlier screen time! Very niiiiiice!

Here's the video of Jayme Rae and Daniel's Dancehall:

Corynne Barron
Anthony Grafton
Style: Paso Doble
Choreographed by: Tony Meredith and Melanie LaPatin (with Francis and Natalie assisting)
Song: "Fuego" - Bond
Grade B

I still find the connection between these two seems almost cautious, almost with trepidation, but once they ease into it, they go full force with each other. Maybe too much so. Was that fall with Corynne falling on top of Anthony supposed to happen? Based on what the judges say, I guess not. Oops.

There were moments of greatness and power here and I thought both Anthony and Corynne showed confidence in their individual moments, though I would say Anthony seemed far more at ease here. Still, I was impressed with Corynne and thought she was better than I thought she would be. Still, it was pretty good overall and entertaining, but they need to trust each other more (and preferably not topple over each other).

Here's the video of Corynne and Anthony's Paso Doble:

Jenna Lynn Higgins
Nicolas Bégin
Style: Hip-Hop
Choreographed by: Sho-Tyme
Song: "Blast Off" - G.Dep, Loon, P. Diddy, Mark Curry
Grade: B+

I love that the black girl isn't hip-hop but the French white boy is the b-boy with swagger and all those tricks! Yet Jenna Lynn totally pulled up those baggy pants and hit it with all her might, and I thought she did well.

Meanwhile, Nicolas was just totally in his swagger and elemend and it just oozed from him. It really was just SO natural for him and as Mary mentioned, B-Boys are usually good at the tricks but not those in between moments, but Nicolas is better than your average B-Boy because he seems to know what to do to make the whole DANCE flow and not just the tricks.

I liked Tre's critical analysis of Jenna Lynn but I still enjoyed her performance, and LOVED seeing Nicolas doing his thang. (Yes, I was trying to be black. Shut yo face!).

Here's the video of Jenna Lynn and Nicolas' Hip-Hop:

Natalie Lyons
Danny Lawn
Style: Jazz
Choreographed by: Melissa Williams
Song: "Please Don't Leave Me" - Pink
Grade B+

Last week Danny made us forget that he was a contemporary dancer while he did his impressive Hip-Hop. This week, I forgot that Natalie is a Krumper as she did the Jazz piece. Both impressive and I'm loving these two more and more. Mary didn't think Danny was as strong as he should have been but his passion made up for it. Maybe, but I loved his performance anyways, and Natalie was great and I find these two bond together quite well. Jean-Marc mentions that he thought Danny might be Vanilla, and to be honest, before they started dancing last week, I feared these two might totally be plain white wonder bread, but they sure are turning into tasty Neopolitan on a hot waffle (sorry, after a night of listening to JM's euphemisms, it's getting into my head too and I can't shake it off).

(You know? Danny reminds me of Kameron Bink. A lot of people didn't like him but I LOVED HIM. I thought both these guys are not the skinny twinky stereotype Contemporary dancers get, but chunky MEN (and I say chunky relative speaking since I'm sure Danny and Kameron are still far skinner than I am) who can still passionately dance and move around. It's not as smooth but there's a nice essence about it all.)

Here's the video of Natalie and Danny's Jazz:

Melanie Buttarazzi
Austin Di Iulio
Style: Smooth Waltz
Choreographed by: Danny Quilliam
Song: "Nights in White Satin (Notte Di Luce)" - Il Divo
Grade: B

As much as I love Austin, I thought this was going to be a disaster. While it was far from perfect, I actually enjoyed it. The technique probably wasn't great, but I still bought it.

Austin is so strong that I think he tried to make himself more smooth and floaty and overcompensated with some flimsy arms. Yet the rest of his body was so sturdy that he evoked the manliness needed for this piece. Plus his feet seemed better at this than most typical non-ballroom dancers can get. (JM notes that Austin's "footwork isn't clunky, which is already a plus")

Melanie B. is beautiful, but like the judges, she didn't quite get it all, but made up for it with her general grace and beauty.

Here's the video of Melanie B. and Austin's Smooth Waltz:

- - - - - - - - - - - - -
The Final Roundup:

Best of the Night: Kim and Emanuel's Theatre
Second Best of the Night: Jayme Rae and Daniel's Dancehall
Third Best of the Night: Amy and Vincent's Contemporary

Best Male of the Night: Nicolas Bégin
Second Best Male of the Night: Daniel Dory

Best Female of the Night: Jayme Rae Dailey
Second Best Female of the Night: Melanie Mah

Worst of the Night - Couple: Melanie B. and Austin by default
Worst of the Night - Single: Melanie B.

Bottom Three Couples: Melanie B. and Austin, Corynne and Anthony, Jenna Lynn and Nicolas (though I'm probably wrong with this one but I'm just going by the fact that I think Jenna Lynn, while good, was probably the next weakest girl).
Should Go Home: Melanie B. and ... um... Emanuel only because I love all the other guys more? Despite Emanuel having a good night?
Going Home: Melanie B. and ... uh... Anthony?

I thought all the boys were good this week and most of the girls. At this point, I think my list from favorite to least looks like this:

1. Vincent
2. Melanie Mah
3. Jayme Rae
4. Daniel
5. Austin
6. Nicolas
7. Danny
8. Everett
9. Natalie
10. Anthony
11. Cody
12. Tara-Jean
13. Melanie B.
14. Jenna Lynn
15. Corynne
16. Kim
17. Emanuel
18. Amy

Though I'm not really sure about the order of the last 4 really, since Kim, Emanuel and Amy really proved themselves tonight. I know it's a bit top heavy with the guys but that's just how I see it right now. Hormones aside. (Well, as much aside as I can possibly make it).

Results on Wednesday at 7:30pm with we get a Bollywood Top 18 Group dance choreographed by Slumdog Millionaire choreographer Longines Fernandes! Fun! Plus the So You Think You Can Dance special with the Top 15 routines EVER from the US show.

Joe had me rank my Top 25 and I already had a hell of a time trying to narrow it down to ONLY 25 pieces (and that's considering I didn't watch Season 1 too, AND that I couldn't submit S1 of Canada's since there were a ton from last year that were great too). I'll post my list later today.

- - - - - - - - - - - - -
For More So You Think You Can Dance:
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So You Think You Can Dance Canada - Season 2:
Top 20 Performance, Top 20 Results
Top 20 Announced
Auditions - Toronto, Vancouver, Saint John
Montréal, Edmonton

So You Think You Can Dance - Season 5:
Top 4 Performance
Top 6 Performance, Top 6 Results
Top 8 Performance, Top 8 Results and Panel Chat
Top 10 Performance, Top 10 Results and Panel Chat
Top 12 Performance, Top 12 Results and Panel Chat
Top 14 Performance, Top 14 Results, Top 14 Panel Chat
Top 16 Performance, Top 16 Results and Panel Chat
Top 18 Performance, Top 18 Results and Panel Chat
Top 20 Performance, Top 20 Results and Panel Chat
Auditions - Vegas Week Part 2 - Top 20 Announcement, Top 20 Pictures/Panel Chat
Vegas Week Part 1
New York City, Denver, Miami, Memphis, LA, Seattle

So You Think You Can Dance Canada:
Top 8 and 6 Performances and Results, Top 4 Performances
Top 10 Performances, Results 10 to 8
Top 12 Performances, Results 12 to 10
Top 14 Performances, Results 14 to 12
Top 16 Performances, Results 16 to 14
Top 18 Performances, Results 18 to 16
Top 20 Performances and Results
Introducing Canada's Top 20
Toronto Week - The Cut to the Top 20
Vancouver, Halifax, Calgary, Montreal - West, East, Middle and Quebec
Toronto - Toronto's Best Foot Forward
The Judges, The Host, The Teaser, All Photos from CTV

So You Think You Can Dance - Season 4:
Top 4 Performances
Top 6 Performances and Results 6 to 4
Top 8 Performances, Results 8 to 6
Top 10 Performances, Results 10 to 8
Top 16, 14 and 12 Weeks Recaps by Vance again
Top 12 Performances, Results 12 to 10 - Guest Blogger Linz McC
Top 14 Performances, Results 14 to 12 - Guest Blogger Linz McC
Top 16 Performances, Results 16 to 14 - Guest Blogger Linz McC
Top 18 Performances, Results 18 to 16
Top 20 Performances, Results 20 to 18
Introducing the Top 20
Callbacks in Las Vegas - The Top 20 Revealed - What Happens In Vegas
Milwaukee, WI - How The Midwest Was Won
Charleston, South Carolina and Washington D.C. - S.C.D.C. The New Electric (Boogaloo) Term!
Salt Lake City and Dallas - Yeehaw Utah!
Los Angeles - It's Time To Put On Those Dancing Shoes Again Kids!

So You Think You Can Dance - Season 3:
Live Tour - Toronto, Pasha's Solo Video, Neil's Solo Video
Finale - Winner Result
Top 4 Performances - Finals
Top 6 Performances, Top 6 Results
Top 8 Performances, Top 8 Results
Top 10 Performances, Top 10 Results
Top 12 Performances, Top 12 Results
Top 14 Performances, Top 14 Results
Top 16 Performances, Top 16 Results
Top 18 Performances, Top 18 Results
Top 20 Performances, Top 20 Results

For So You Think You Can Dance Season 2:
Favorite Video Clips
Song List Live Tour 2006 - Toronto
Live Tour 2006 - Buffalo, Pics, More Pics
Photos from CTV So You Think You Can Dance Canada website.
Thanks to Mrduckbears for the vids.
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