July 14, 2011

SYTYCD: Judging the Choreographers, Top 12

So You Think You Can Dance choreographers need to stop focusing so much on developing intricate stories and spend more time creating dances that are exciting and better highlight the contestants' strengths. This week was one of the worst in terms of choreography. While there were a few standouts, overall the dances weren't memorable.

Tony Meredith, paso doble (Sasha & Alexander) -- This wasn't Tony Meredith's strongest Paso Doble (think Travis and Heidi). Plus, where was the flowy skirt?

Travis Wall, contemporary (Jordan & Tadd) -- Travis Wall did it yet again, with a contemporary routine about women who take advantage of weak men. Jordan played a vulture and Tadd was her prey. It was dark and the style of the dance very much resembled that of the great Wade Robson.

Spencer Liff, Broadway (Ryan & Ricky) -- A really lackluster dance by Spencer Liff. Ryan spent more time in the dance walking around than showing off her technique. But I am starting to wonder with Ryan and Ricky if they have just had bad luck with boring routines or maybe they just don't have the star quality I originally thought.

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Christopher Scott, hip hop (Mitchell & Caitlynn) -- Christopher Scott had a good concept, exploring the pain of children in Uganda who were abducted. But the actual routine didn't live up to the potential. It didn't help that Caitlynn and Mitchell weren't in time with each other for most of the dance.

Louie Van Amstel, tango (Melanie & Marko) -- The tango isn't typically my favorite genre of dance, but Louie Van Amstel gave Melanie and Marko a dance that really complimented couple. This tango was clearly difficult, which speaks to the abilities of Melanie and Marko, and the series of flips at the end of the dance were absolutely amazing.

Christopher Scott, lyrical hip hop (Calrice & Jesse) -- Christopher Scott redeemed himself with this lyrical hip hop routine about loving yourself just the way you are.

Tyce Diorio, contemporary (Sasha & Alexander) -- Tyce Diorio's contemporary pieces have started to trump his Broadway routines. While I feel some of his Broadway routines lately have lacked that extra umph, that wasn't lacking in this contemporary routine to Aretha' Franklin's "That's Life." But I wasn't as blown away by the choreography as the judges seemed to be.

Spencer Liff, Broadway (Jordan & Tadd) -- This was an interesting number. While I was excited Spencer Liff used Rent's "Out Tonight," the song didn't really mesh with the story -- a classic fairytale of a prince waking up a princess. Sonya Tayeh said it best that it was a "jumble" of things.

Louie Van Amstel, cha cha cha (Ryan & Ricky) -- Okay, I have finally come to the realization that Ryan and Ricky just aren't as strong or charismatic as most of the other contestants. I can't really criticize the dance here, they just didn't have it.

Travis Wall, jazz (Caitlynn & Mitchell) -- Travis Wall set this jazz piece in the 1970s. Caitlynn plays a woman who finds out the person she loves is married. This isn't my favorite Travis Wall routine, but there were some fun flips thrown in there.

Dee Caspary, contemporary (Melanie & Mark) -- All the contemporary dances are starting to look the same to me. I don't have much to say about the dance itself, but I think Melanie and Marko are the clear favorites in the competition.

Tony Meredith, jive (Clarice & Jesse) -- The jive is a hard dance to get excited about. Most of the contestants have never done the jive, and it's hard to pull off. This one was good. Nothing really bad to say, but I wasn't overwhelmed by it.

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