‘So You Think You Can Dance’ review: A Mongolian dancer; Dragon House returns

SYTYCDAfter spending time in Boston as of late, Tuesday night’s “So You Think You Can Dance” took the focus down south to Memphis, Tennessee, a very-cool town that needs to be featured more on competitions shows in the future.

Let’s start by giving guest judge Wayne Brady some serious props. We’ve always loved the guy thanks to “Whose Line Is It Anyway,” and he did a fantastic job here when it comes to giving fun, insightful criticism that really looked at things from a performance standpoint.

Day One

Straight to Vegas

Dorian “BluPrint” Hector – We love that Dragon House is apparently the place that breeds great animation dancers, and Dorian (who has a pretty awesome name, by the way) really wanted to be the heir to Cyrus Spencer last year. The guy can seriously dance! It’s also slightly different than anything that we’ve seen before, which is nice.

Tucker Knox – The moment that this guy said that he was accepted into Julliard before a car accident, you knew he was going to be amazing. The only thing hurting his long-term potential is that we’re pretty sure that we have said this same thing about five or six other male contemporary dancers this season. The guys are stepping it up!

Courtney Thurston – There’s a very raw energy when it comes to Courtney’s talent on the floor. She’s not completely polished and could get in trouble in Las Vegas because of it, but she also has a powerful level of vulnerability to her contemporary moves. She also has one of the coolest dads ever.

Nico Greetham – The final guy in the first day of the auditions had an extremely enthusiastic mother, and he was also an amazing dancer to go along with it. How in the world does Mary Murphy get so excited time and time again?

Elyse Frelinger – It’s an acrobat! One who also happens to be a great dancer, to boot, as she closed the first night of auditions.

Advanced via choreography

Shanshan Qiao Roethlisberger – She clearly wins the title of having the hardest-to-spell name in the entire competition. As for the dance, it was something completely cool, Mongolian, and different than anything that we have ever seen on television before. This is what we love so much about this show, though we could have done without the subtle mocking of her language barrier before the performance. We’re so happy to see her advance!

Curtis Holland – There is something to be said for tapping as fast as humanly possible, but we almost prefer someone who has a little bit more subtlety and control in what they try to do with their technique. The guy’s brilliant, but we do want to see him do something else. Luckily, he will get a chance.

Day Two

To Vegas

Jenna Johnson – The moment you saw that she was a ballroom dancer from Utah, you knew she would be good. There’s something in the water there that grows ballroom dancers. Her partner was equally great, but was too young to audition this year.

Novien Yarber – An interesting contemporary dancer, mostly because there were almost some tribal influences through the strong, powerful way that he moved across the floor.

Caleb Brauner – By far, this guy may be one of our favorite people on the entire season so far. He’s a complete geek with serious talent, and he stands out from a crowd. This makes him miles different than anyone else. Plus, this guy can really do any style that he wants, and that alone is impressive.

Eliminated via choreography

Isabel Freiberger – A very good dancer, but someone that really got back in the audition round more so on salsa tricks than on actual dance steps. Fun to watch, but the judges needed something more.

Paige Pellicano – The daughter of an Elvis impersonator, but sadly, not an accomplished enough dancer for this show at this time.

Larry Booze – A super-cool hip-hop dancer. He’s also a gracious one in some ways, given that he voluntarily left the choreography round when he realized that he was not good enough.

Who was your favorite from this audition show? If you want to check out some more highlights from “So You Think You Can Dance” this season, all you have to do is click here.

Photo: Fox

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