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Some of my favorite So You Think You Can Dance routines - VIDEOS

by Kristin Sample, posted Jun 29th 2008 2:24PM
Heidi and BenjiAt first, I was a little disappointed with this season's So You Think You Can Dance. I found most of the routines underwhelming. Furthermore, Mary and Nigel constantly telling us that it's the "best dancers they've ever had" and the most "competition they've ever seen" is a red flag. I think most viewers, those with dance training and without, know what they like and why they like it. And viewers don't like being told they should like something.

So I started thinking about my favorite pieces from past seasons. I thought about how I got goose bumps when Anya and Danny did the Viennese Waltz. I remembered how Benji's solos always put a smile on my face. I'll concede that season four hit it's stride after this week. But, you can't argue that previous seasons, especially two and three, left a lot for these new dancers to live up to.

Some of my favorite pieces from Fox's hit show are after the jump. I'll probably come up with more but here's something to start you off. Enjoy!

Let's start with that Danny / Anya waltz routine. Usually the Viennese Waltz, much like the Quick Step, can be the kiss of death on this show. But these two pulled it off beautifully. They looked so mature up there. Of course, it didn't hurt that both of them are stunning. I still get goose bumps when Danny turns her (sorry, I don't know the term).

Last week, we saw another great Viennese Waltz by Twitch and Kherrington. This was nicely danced as well, but the story behind it took it to a whole other level emotionally. I think this left a lot of viewers in tears.

Let's talk about Disco. So, far the disco this season has been drab. Courtney and Gev's piece the first week was too contrived. And I think everyone was a bit surprised that Will and Jess's routine didn't land them in the bottom three this week. (I will say that Will was wonderfully entertaining in it though.) Here's two disco routines you might have forgotten. Natalie and Musa's piece shows just how important it is to have a strong guy when it comes to partnering. On the other hand, Lacey and Kamryn's piece shows how important a great female partner can be.

This is hands-down my favorite Latin ballroom routine EVER on the show. Sure, I know you're going to say that Benji and Heidi had an advantage because they're cousins and dance partners (champions to boot). It still made for good entertainment. Try counting how many turns Heidi does.

Here's my favorite contemporary piece from choreographer Mia Michaels. I know I've said that I find her work inaccessible, but this one had me on the edge of my seat. Lauren and Danny are believable as lovers and both are technically proficient enough to pull off Mia's "alien" movements.

We know by now that the solos are just as important as the duets on this solo. These are two of my favorite solos. It's hard to put it all out there in thirty seconds. They have to mix tricks and choreography. Plus the dancers have to relax enough so that they can show the judges how much joy they get from dance.

I love this solo by Natalie. She's very sexy and quirky. And that turn she does from the floor onto the tops of her feet is awesome. Benji's solo shows that ballroom dancers too can be amazing solo artists. He was there to win from the beginning.

Here's one of my favorite Wade Robson pieces. I think many of you will agree it's pretty darn good.

"Rama Lama Bang Bang" is one of my favorite group pieces. The song is fantastic. The choreography has just the right amount of kitsch. And the performance? Take a look.

So that's it for now. What are your favorite dances from past seasons? From this season? And how do you think season four measures up with past seasons?

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I was so excited about this season because last years dancers were so special. This year? I stopped watching after last week. How Marquis got bumped over Chris when it was so evident Chris was probably going home the next week and now the same treatment with Chelsea being bumped over Comfort, five of us at work said good-bye to Nigel, Maryanne and what his name..Bye Bye

July 02 2008 at 5:40 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Wow, wow, wow. I could go on for days about my favorite dances.

Not a lot from season 1 stands out to me. I think they really improved the show in season 2 by keeping the partners together for the first half of the season. With that said, the only dance I really remember still and love thinking about is Ryan's first ballroom dance, something latin, and he did an outstanding job.

And aaah, season 2. I love Benji. Everything he was in made me smile. I can't pick a favorite of his. But I do know I *loved* Allison & Ivan's contemporary and their hip-hop to "Sexy Love". Of course the park bench dance with Heidi & Travis. Love the Nerd hip-hop (Tranji!). Top 4, to "SexyBack". Best group routines are the Top 10, "Rama Lama Bang Bang" and Top 6 to "Hide and Seek".

Season 3, how I miss you so. Kamcey. All 5 of their dances I thought were so great. They had the absolute best chemistry as dancers. But of course my favorite was their very first dance, by Mia Michaels to "Dancing". I can't tell you how many times I've watched that dance!. I also love Dom & Sabra's hip hop to "Make It Work". Love "The Deal" with Sabra & Neil and his plange :) Love anything with Neil, just about... I wasn't a big Danny fan and hated his and Lauren's Mia Michaels piece (I have no idea what anyone sees in that), but I loved him and Anya's dance to "Apologize" and his and Lacey's to "Hip Hip, Chin Chin". Best group dance was easily the Mia Michael's piece to "The Moment I Said It". You put Mia, a group of dancers dressed in black and an Imogen Heap song together, you get greatness!!

I really could go on so much longer, but I'll stop there... :)

June 30 2008 at 9:56 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I don't know what it is about it, but I love Allison and Ivan's Contemporary piece choreographed by Tyce Diorio to Annie Lennox's "WHY." Maybe its because it was such a surprise to see Ivan doing contemporary so well, or the fact that they are a beautiful/convincing couple. I find myself watching it from time to time when I can find it on you tube, which I can't right now to link it!

June 29 2008 at 11:58 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Overall I do think that Season 4 is weaker - in the contemporary dancer department. Specifically the male dancers. There is no Neil, Travis, Danny, Blake, or Nick in this season. And Sabra and Allison from past seasons put the females to shame. The breakers/poppers/hip-hop dancers are definitely better this year, with Josua and Gev (who totally reminds me of Dominic).

SYTYCD is one of my favorite shows, but you did miss out on some great performances on this list:

You can't mention great routines without mentioning Travis and Heidi's beautiful bench dance by Mia Michaels.

Hok and Jamie's Hummingbird and Flower dance is definitely my favorite piece that Wade has choreographed, hands down, although Jesus and Sara's Caberet Hoover by Wade comes in a close second.

Nick and Melody's "All That Jazz" from Season 1 is still my favorite Broadway dance on the show, and it has yet to be matched for me. My favorite disco piece is also from that pair.

As for Mandy Moore and jazz, Sabra and Neil killed it with "Sweet Dreams."

I also loved the choreography for Neil and Danny's finale piece, by Mia Michaels, and their royal prince battle.

By far, my favorite solos ever had to come from Ryan from Season 1. I don't know if the show will ever see a more creative breaker, unless he too comes from Quest.

My favorite season was by far Season 3. It might be because Wade Robson was such a huge part of the show. I do think that Tabitha and Napoleon are an awesome addition, and I can't wait to see Sonya's next routine. My favorite dancer so far is quirky, quirky Mark.

Oh, and Rama Lama is my favorite group dance by far. But I also love Mia's Top 6 Season 2 "Hide and Seek" number.

June 29 2008 at 6:33 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

The Ramalama dance was by far the best group dance this show has ever had - I still bring it up every so often. That and the entertaining "Sexyback" routine with season 2's final four.

As for my favorite partner dance, I definitely have to go with Pasha/Lacey, where she was a mannequin. That was AMAZING.

June 29 2008 at 6:08 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

It is going to be really hard for this season to outshine last season's dancers and routines for me. Everyone last season mixed so well with each other.
Also, for your disco list - Neil and Sarah! The jump! The lift-wiggle! The whole dance was great.
I gotta say, I love watching the hip hop routines Pasha was in. He did such a good job for being sooo out of his element and his goofy personality was great.

June 29 2008 at 5:46 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I love that group performance! It's the only one I remember.

June 29 2008 at 4:00 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I would disagree with your pick for the favorite Mia Michaels routine. Personally I loved the one with Lacey & Kameron from last year. This is the one that made me fall in love with contemporary dance.


June 29 2008 at 3:40 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I would disagree with your pick for the favorite Mia Michaels routine. Personally I loved the one with Lacey & Kameron from last year. This is the one that made me fall in love with contemporary dance.


June 29 2008 at 3:40 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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