The Dance Spectacle

The Dance Spectacle: A Fusion of Intricacy and Exuberance

It's surreal that we've swiftly arrived at the top 10. Last week bid farewell to Dareian, Matthew, Janelle, and Amelia. This week opens with a tribute to Gene Kelly, marking his centenary if he were alive today. In the audience sits Gene’s widow, Patricia Kelly, who appears ageless, defying the 47-year age difference with Gene. A fascinating tidbit; let's delve deeper, world.

This week introduces the All-stars, a welcome addition. The judging panel comprises Nigel, Mary, and guest judge Benjamin Millepied (renowned for Black Swan's choreography), adding a touch of sophistication.

Tiffany and Brandon tackle a disco routine by Doriana Sanchez. I confess, I've never been a fan of disco on this show, but both Tiffany and Brandon infuse the routine with boundless energy. It's a dazzling, bedazzled performance, unexpectedly enjoyable. Nigel applauds it, Mary commends Tiffany's fiery execution, and Benjamin lauds her fearlessness.

Witney and Nick embrace a jazz routine by the brilliant Travis Wall. Travis's deviation from his usual style is a pleasant surprise, and the routine, with its character and impeccable staging, captivates. Jazz, often challenging, shines here, especially with Travis at the helm. Benjamin revels in the fun, Nigel praises Witney's commitment, and Mary finds her smoldering.

Cole and Anya engage in a cha-cha-cha by Dimitry Chaplin. Anya's dance prowess is formidable, challenging Cole to keep pace. Ballroom routines can be tricky, but the lively choreography, popular music, and the duo's vibrant performance make it a triumph. Mary is awestruck, attributing the iconic "Hot Tamale Train" phrase to Anya, Benjamin encourages more movement from Cole, and Nigel notes a slight disconnection.

George Lawrence II and-Allison Holker Jazz

Lindsay and Jakob attempt a Broadway routine by Spencer Liff. Unfortunately, the choreography, revolving around the concept of Jakob as Lindsay's shadow, falls short, particularly during a screen-dancing segment. Despite improvements afterward, it fails to impress. Nigel deems it great, Mary inexplicably puts Lindsay on the "Hot Tamale Train," and Benjamin acknowledges Lindsay's musicality.

Will and Kathryn venture into Bollywood, courtesy of Nakul Dev Mahajan. Will's exuberance, while occasionally overdone, suits the vibrant Bollywood style. The routine, performed at breakneck speed, garners admiration. Mary praises Will's control, Benjamin finds him charming, and Nigel concurs on the overperformance, albeit acknowledging its irrelevance in this context. Read our article about revealing drama in dancing, in the article entitled Dance Extravaganza.

Cyrus and Jaimie tackle a contemporary routine by Travis Wall. The routine is visually striking, but Cyrus's limitations in technique persist. Benjamin appreciates Cyrus's raw energy, Nigel defends his inclusion, and Mary commends Travis for challenging Cyrus.

Chehon and Lauren explore a hip-hop routine by Dave Scott. Chehon's elegance clashes with the hip-hop vibe, emphasizing his struggle with the style. The routine, designed for a more robust dancer, loses impact. Mary recognizes Chehon's effort, Benjamin finds the performance spontaneous, and Nigel notes fluidity but suggests funkiness.

George and Allison delve into a jazz routine by Tyce Diorio. Tyce's recent struggles persist, and while George performs admirably, the routine lacks entertainment value. Nigel praises George's technique, Benjamin lauds his movement, and Mary finds him exceptional.

Eliana and Alex shine in a Stacey Tookey contemporary piece. Finally paired with a suitable partner, Eliana delivers a captivating performance. The Nancy Sinatra cover of "Bang Bang (he shot me down)" and the dancers' strength and control receive a standing ovation. Nigel and Mary are thoroughly impressed, and Benjamin praises the passion displayed.

A Fine Dance Balance

Audrey and Twitch attempt a hip-hop routine by Dave Scott. Struggling with hip-hop, Audrey's styling and the routine's execution fall flat. The vampire-themed choreography, lit humorously, fails to convey the intended mood. Benjamin feels Twitch outshines Audrey, Mary appreciates the choreography, and Nigel acknowledges Audrey's potential but desires more character depth.

In the jeopardy zone, Witney and Audrey face elimination for the girls, while Chehon and George stand as the at-risk guys. Solos are performed, and Chehon's solo particularly shines. Surprisingly, Witney is saved, and George exits, a decision attributed to Chehon's exceptional solos.

In this dance spectacle, Eliana stands out as a class apart, transcending gender distinctions. The looming question for next week: Is George in jeopardy due to Tyce's challenging routines? The journey continues, and the divine Cat sparkles as the anchor, guiding us through the twists and turns.

Bonus Rounds:

  1. Cher Fact: Sonny Bono wrote "Bang Bang (My Baby Shot Me Down)," an ironic twist to his tragic fate.
  2. Eliana's brilliance remains unparalleled, captivating both male and female audiences.
  3. The Tyce Diorio routine for George raises concerns; Tyce's recent choreography hasn't lived up to past standards.
  4. Cat's allure is undeniable, adorned in elegance and a casual yet enchanting hairstyle.
  5. The scripted debate on solo performances feels contrived, a predictable element for maintaining show length.

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