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pixie cut
08-04-2011, 05:09 PM
I also notice that there are so few FSU'ers commenting on the show this year. Only 4 pages for the next to final week? I have been greatly let down by the show this time around, and I guess I'm not the only one. I'm sad about it and will definitely give it another shot, but I think the bloom is off the rose. I'm definitely not going to the tour unless someone gives me a ticket!

Part of it is that the novelty has worn off for me. I've watched since season two, so it just doesn't generate the energy it once did.

I think after the ill fated fall 2009 season, which had some great dancers but seemed to be done half heartedly, followed by last year's all star overkill, interests have waned.

I don't know that this group is any less impressive than Lacey, Sabra, Danny and Pasha (sorry Neil), but they do generate less heat.

kwanfan1818
08-04-2011, 05:12 PM
From Susan Marshall's "Kiss" (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oyx8efetvIY)

Cheylana
08-04-2011, 05:20 PM
I have been greatly let down by the show this time around, and I guess I'm not the only one.
My problem is that there were just waaaaaaay too many contemporary dancers in this bunch. Only one ballroom dancer and one tapper, who were basically immediately dispatched. And I only like contemporary in small doses - not one angsty/writhing/HMV-heavy routine after the next. Maybe that just means this show isn't for me, but seasons four and five were nicely balanced and great fun; not sure why Nigel & Co couldn't stick to that formula.

kwanfan1818
08-04-2011, 05:29 PM
Did they tour from the beginning? Did they find that people coming to the tour were less interested in a mix of dance styles and really wanted a lot of contemporary angst?

barbk
08-04-2011, 05:46 PM
I also notice that there are so few FSU'ers commenting on the show this year. Only 4 pages for the next to final week? I have been greatly let down by the show this time around, and I guess I'm not the only one. I'm sad about it and will definitely give it another shot, but I think the bloom is off the rose. I'm definitely not going to the tour unless someone gives me a ticket!

Maybe it is my age, but I am seriously done with the partner angst routines, which all seem way too much like Twilight brought to the dance floor. I keep waiting for some choreographer with a sense of humor to show up. (Wade, where are you?) And except for Melanie's solo, which at least showed off some different movements than we'e been seeing, the contemporary/jazz solos done by the women are all variations on the same eight moves, with added doses of teenage angst. I don't know how much older Alex or Twitch or Kent were during their seasons, but they brought a whole lot more LIFE to their dancing imo. And I am still astonished that they dumped Iveta and kept pole-dancer Jordan, when Iveta brought more to the dance floor virtually every time. I still think her solo (When You're Good to Mama) is one of the all-time best solos ever done by a SYTYCD contestant.

Watching SYTYCD this season has been somewhat boring, and there's not much I've felt interested in going back to watch.

I blame Nigel, who as producer has fed the choreographers the Kool-Aid that virtually everything they do is magic. And then when Sonja goes a little outside the lines, she gets kicked. So what will we see next time -- more of the same angst he rhapsodizes over. Frankly, a bunch of the choreographers on the Australian and Canadian shows are doing better work, and I don't think that it is entirely because they have better dancers to work with. Nappy Tabs needs a long vacation, and when they come back they need to be told that there is no such thing as lyrical hip hop -- or one per season. Once upon a time Tyce might have been a Broadway choreographer, but his Broadway routines have been absolutely terrible, and his contemporary/jazz routines are okay. They need a good Broadway choreographer who doesn't simply worship at the altar of Fosse, badly. And the ballroom choreographers need to get the message that the ballroom dances need to spend a majority of the time reflecting the actual ballroom steps for that dance, with shoes, not the mishmash of ballroom/contemporary we've mostly been given. (Caitlyn's dance last night was a very pleasant exception.) And some dances need to be retired -- audiences clearly don't respond very well to quickstep, Bollywood, or the unlamented Russian Folk Dancing. Surely there are enough other dances out there that are worth trying that we don't need to keep sacrificing perfectly good dancers to failed genres.

And I have to say that as a mom I was not happy with the stick dance and how close the sticks came to her eyes. That could easily be a non-recoverable injury with lifelong consequences, and was an unnecessary conceit anyway.

Rob
08-04-2011, 05:55 PM
I liked Christina a lot.

Solos:

Melanie - wow, best solo of the year IMO
Sasha - good
Caitlin - meh

Ricky - always shines here
Marko - good
Tadd - wish he'd pull off some sick stuff and not just hop on his hand so long

Sasha/Kent - she was so good in this. I thought it was gimmicky but nice choreography, but her performance did move me.

Melanie was good in the hip hop with Twitch, but it probably was her weakest so far. Those pant! So unflattering on her body type!

Tadd/Ellenore - I was so happy that Ellenore was working with Sonya again, but this came off as kind of a workshoppy exploration of a concept and not a fully developed performance piece. Very interesting, but not over the top great. Tadd's lines continue to amaze.

Ricky/Jaimie. I just watched her. She was beautiful. I think I saw him once and he didn't stand out as bad.

Marko/ Janette. I just watched her. Same as Ricky for Marko - not bad but I agreed with Christina, I wanted more thrust!

Caitlynn/Pasha - she was pretty good in this.

Of the last 3, I liked Sonya's piece best by far. Whacking ok, but limiting. Broadway, well done, but I didn't care for the piece.

Satellitegirl
08-04-2011, 05:56 PM
I love the Bollywood stuff, but I agree that the quickstep is usually boring.

Allen
08-04-2011, 06:03 PM
I blame Nigel, who as producer has fed the choreographers the Kool-Aid that virtually everything they do is magic. And then when Sonja goes a little outside the lines, she gets kicked. So what will we see next time -- more of the same angst he rhapsodizes over. Frankly, a bunch of the choreographers on the Australian and Canadian shows are doing better work, and I don't think that it is entirely because they have better dancers to work with. Nappy Tabs needs a long vacation, and when they come back they need to be told that there is no such thing as lyrical hip hop -- or one per season. Once upon a time Tyce might have been a Broadway choreographer, but his Broadway routines have been absolutely terrible, and his contemporary/jazz routines are okay. They need a good Broadway choreographer who doesn't simply worship at the altar of Fosse, badly. And the ballroom choreographers need to get the message that the ballroom dances need to spend a majority of the time reflecting the actual ballroom steps for that dance, with shoes, not the mishmash of ballroom/contemporary we've mostly been given. (Caitlyn's dance last night was a very pleasant exception.) And some dances need to be retired -- audiences clearly don't respond very well to quickstep, Bollywood, or the unlamented Russian Folk Dancing. Surely there are enough other dances out there that are worth trying that we don't need to keep sacrificing perfectly good dancers to failed genres.


I agree with most of what you said here. Audiences just aren't responding to Bollywood (I love it though) and have never responded well to quickstep or foxtrot. SYTYCDC uses dance hall and house dancing and I think those could be very interesting and get votes from the audience. I wish we would get more Afro Jazz and African routines. The audiences seem to like them slightly more than Bollywood. I would love to see NappyTabs, Tyce, and Mandy take a vacation. I haven't been a fan of any of Dee Caspary's routines this season. I'd love to see Gary Stewart and Larissa McLaughlin from the Australian Dance Theatre come back and do some abstract contemporary routines. As far as ballroom, I felt that Dmitry, Jonathan Roberts, and Louis Van Amstell have given us really good routines this season. I still say they should let Benji come back and do West Coast Swing routines for the show. The one for Pasha and Sara was one of the highlights of that very strong season.

I don't know about anyone else, but I really enjoyed the wacking routine last night. However, I feel like if they were going to introduce a new dance like that, all three of the couples should have had to do something new or at least something we haven't had all season like Jitterbug or African.

flyingsit
08-04-2011, 06:05 PM
I agree that the choreography and genres have been so limited this year. Where's the disco? Where are the creative concepts? Where is the swing, or real hip-hop, or afro-jazz (outside of one routine Week 1)?

I really wish that they would not stick to the gender-balanced eliminations; last season when so many girls were eliminated early and there were so many same-sex pieces it forced the choreographers to get out of the angsty boy-girl storylines. Also, IMO, the manipulation has been worse than ever this season, and the fact that they have kept the elimination decision in the hands of the judges ALL SEASON LONG has driven away viewers in droves. They really could have skipped most of the season, or not bothered even having votes, since everyone knew all along that Nigel wanted Sasha/Melanie/Marko/Tadd in the finale.

LadyGray
08-04-2011, 06:40 PM
I agree with much of your assessment of last night's show pixie cut (my DVR cut off the last 3 dances, so I haven't yet seen the end).

I think Melanie should have been CLOBBERED by the judges for what she did in that hip hop, in the same way that hip hop dancers are over-scrutinized on this show when they dance outside of their style. Of all the non-hip-hop dancers this season, that was one of the worst hip hop performances so far (Ricky wasn't that great last week with Marko, but that whole dance was kinda dumb). I agree with p c that Twitch was dumbing down his dancing so as not to outshine Melanie by a light year.

I thought Melanie did a great job with her solo, so I'm guessing she'll be safe, nonetheless.

Caitlynn was magnificent with Pasha, once again. I do agree that Pasha's partnering skills have a lot to do with it, but even when she was dancing on her own, she managed to not look completely out of her element.

I liked the piece with Sasha and Kent, though I've not been a fan of Kent in general (I'm not sure why I can't get into his dancing). I couldn't get into Sasha's dance with Ricky... it seemed to be danced in slow motion or something.

I didn't like the chandelier piece because there was too much hanging and too little dancing.

Those are the only dances I saw, I think.


I thought Melanie's solo was nice, but not earth shattering. I thought she looked ridiculous and totally out of her element in the hip hop routine. I felt Twitch dummied his dancing down as much as possible so as not to overwhelm her, but her discomfort still showed through.

Kent surprised me in his routine with Sasha. He did okay and allowed her to shine.

Caitlynn did well, but honestly anyone with a modicum of dancing skill would look good with Pasha. This man is a supreme partner.

If Tadd had been dancing that routine with anyone other than Ellinore it would have been garbage. Ellinore saved his ass and made it decent. He was fine, but it wasn't Sonia's finest work. She was trying too hard and lost sight of the dancing.

Marko wasn't at his best in the paso, but it had nice moments. Janette was a salsa dancer, but I'm sure she's picked up a lot of Latin and ballroom after touring with Burn the Floor.

Ricky did the best he could with the dumb wacking routine.

LadyGray
08-04-2011, 06:54 PM
I think we have seen a great decline in the quantity of quality choreography since the move to the big stage a couple of seasons ago. Some of the choreographers haven't gotten a very good grasp of staging duets on this huge stage.

Often, I find the lighting or costuming to be distracting, especially when the piece is set so far back on the stage.

The pieces that work are the ones where the lighting and/or sets create(s) a sense of a smaller space and the dancers aren't wearing costumes which make them seem to disappear into the background.

The dancers have no chance of making an impact if they seem to be dwarfed/engulfed by their surroundings.

Someone else pointed out last week that the steps, stairwell, and landings helped to provide different choreographic focal points on the old stage. Shame they no longer have those options, especially when Nigel keeps upping the ante, demanding more and more 'wow!' moments every single week.

Holley Calmes
08-04-2011, 09:40 PM
I love the lighting, but the camera work sucks. I get so damn tired of listening to Nigel and whoever else is on the panel just slathering over a piece or a dancer who looked downright mediocre on my TV, and I don't even pretend to be an expert. Could it be the camera work that distracts from brilliant performances? I can certainly give the kids a break by saying that "maybe that looked better live." the camera work has been atrocious since I started watching many years ago.

What really makes my eyes go a'rollin' is when they start tearing up or say they're slamming the desktop while the piece is ongoing because it's just so wonderful. I'm left with...huh? Either the judges are trying to work me, or the piece doesn't translate televised. Maybe live it's different. I sure hope so.

I also get a wee bit offended at Nigel making his "pronoucements" about who is great, a beast, the best, etc. when all I see is a kid who isn't any or very much better than the top dancers in my pre-pro or at RDA. I've got teenage girls who can do a tilt just as good as anybody on the show, multiple pirouettes and fouettes on pointe, and many with performance quality on par with what's on the show. And we are not a conmpetition studio. I want to see stuff that I don't have access to on a daily basis, and a lot of that is tap, ballroom, and the exotic dances I enjoy so much. I love Bollywood, and I even love the Russian folk stuff! The feeling of Nigel trying to manipulate me makes me want to totally rebel against whoever it is he is pimping. That's probably my problem with Melanie, though I don't dislike her at all, I just don't get the total worship, and he's pissed me off with trying to promote her beyond her level. (She's not at Fordham any more, so I heard.)

Nigel-you're killing your own golden goose. Give us some credit! Not all your viewers are 14. If that's all the demographic you want, which is what it's looking like, then that's what you're going to wind up with, and you can call it a teen show. Not even that. An adolescent show.

I am also a bit tired of these celebrity judges who are really not serious dancers. OK, Christina is precious and I loved her on Married with Children back in the day. So she won a Tony, and good for her. But she is not a dance insider who lives for dance 24-7, and nothing she had to say was in any way erudite or insightful. Just cliches. Cute as she is, she said nothing of value to me. The only outside judge I actually enjoyed was Gaga, and I think a lot of that was her wonderful blue hair.:lol:

I want my show back dammit Nigel!!!!!!

uyeahu
08-04-2011, 09:48 PM
I feel like I've known who would be in the final for weeks now and I've had little incentive to vote because I knew the judges would be making the final decision regardless. Of the 4 that will be in the final I might throw some votes to Marko because I respect that of the four remaining he's performed extremely well both inside and outside of his style (as has Tadd, but less spectacularly) and has taken his fair amount of criticism when his performance wasn't as good as it could be. To me that's what the show should be about.

Last night Melanie's hip-hop looked nothing like hip-hop to me and I felt the same about her Broadway, yet we heard nothing but praise from the judges. Boring and unfair to both Melanie and the other dancers. Sasha has many great qualities but she also has issues with her feet and her leg line quite often. Not a peep about that from the judges. All of the guys, including Marko, have been treated like also rans for most of the season. It's taken all of the joy out of it for me and made me resent two fantastic dancers whom I'd normally love.

nypanda
08-04-2011, 11:16 PM
They need a good Broadway choreographer who doesn't simply worship at the altar of Fosse, badly.

"Simply" being the operative word...otherwise I was going to say "gurrl, there ain't no such thing".

Although I wish they WOULD worship at the altar of Fosse properly and just DO THE DAMN FOSSE CHOREOGRAPHY instead of the watered down "tribute" dreck. :blah:

One useless thought -- my husband says to me last night: "look at Ricky. He is a Sleestack". And as much as I love Rickey, I'm afraid I won't be able to watch him tonight without going "chssssssssssssss" whenever he's on the screen. :P

Allen
08-05-2011, 01:05 AM
Cat looks :smokin: tonight

Oh wow, it's just on votes tonight.