So You Think You Can Dance Recap: What Happened in Vegas

So You Think You Can Dance Vegas RecapAnd then there were…only 33?

Yep, So You Think You Can Dance‘s Season 10 Vegas Week played out Tuesday night like a Vin Diesel summer blockbuster — too fast, too furious — whittling down a crop of 159 hoofers with the ruthlessness of a combine harvester moving across a wheat field.

Call me crazy, but I’d have preferred to see Vegas Week extended over two episodes. I mean, with six separate rounds — solo, hip-hop, jazz, ballroom, groups and contemporary — there was simply too much good (and bad) dancing left on the cutting room floor. And simply too much trumped-up drama — the moping and sulking hot Eastern European Mariia, the emotional tarring and feathering of hot Eastern European Armen, the shaming of Sydney — stealing valuable screen time, as well. (Plus, no explanation of why adorable Tommy Tibball got cut! Phooey!)

Making matters worse, when we did actually get to see the bulk of a routine, there was so much cutting to the various judges’ reactions — Twitch whooping, Adam Shankman gyrating, the unspeakably lovely Hannah Simone misting up — that it felt hard to truly connect on an emotional level. A good rule of thumb for future seasons, Nigel: If something is stunning enough to cause a three-Kleenex alarm for Mary and Adam, maybe keep the camera on it for more than 10 seconds at a time, okay? Okay.

Okay, okay…enough of me acting all Grouchy McCrankypants. Without further ado, my five favorite moments from Vegas!

Du-Shaunt “Fik-Shun” Stegall’s Solo | I know the producers are probably trying to foist him all the way to the finale, but man the kid is remarkable. I loved how he threw almost Fosse-esque snaps and wiggles into a b-boy routine that made it look as though he’d “swallowed” the beat. And dude has to be part robot the way he can bend back at the knees and practically touch the ground with his head.

Sonya Tayeh’s Craziness | Nobody makes Vegas as intense for the trembling contestants as the jazz choreographer. “Stop talking! Start feeling and start looking!” she growled, as the contestants sat nodding eagerly. I loved how she demanded that every contestant surrender any doubt in his or her partner, “even if you just met!” I dunno, there’s something about having a choreographer’s eyes widen, watching her hiss encouragements like “your body can handle more than your mind thinks it can!” and “I want to see blood, sweat, tears — dying for your spot here!” that makes it all the more satisfying when a contestant like Amy Yakima nails the choreography with a little extra passion and extension.

Dmirty’s Chaplin’s Eyebrows | Yeah yeah, it was only 5 seconds of footage, but I loved his multiple suggestive brow lifts as fellow SYTYCD vet Chelsie Hightower broke it on down about the sexiness of the ballroom routine they were teaching the contestants.

Jenna Johnson’s Ballroom Moves | I’ll admit I’m partial to a ballroom chica, but last year’s Lindsay-Witney combo never quite made my heart go aflutter. Jenna’s execution of the Vegas ballroom routine showed brute strength, a willingness to be sexy (without a side of coy girlishness) and gams for days.

‘Boston Heroes’ Group Routine | I kind wish the quintet hadn’t shared the story of their routine — people coming together and rising up in the aftermath of the Boston Marathon bombings — because, for starters, it seemed a very odd fit with “I Can’t Make You Love Me,” and secondly, I like to be able to draw my own interpretations from a routine. Nevertheless, ballroom brothers Alan and Gene, contemporary gals Kayla and Jasmine, and the aforementioned Jenna really did succeed, as Adam noted, in making something intriguing happen any which way you looked. The fact that they’ve got the inherent skill set to concoct something with that much strength, maturity and fluidity bodes well for when they’re thrown into the fray with the show’s top-notch choreographers.

Honorable Mention: BluPrint vs Jade — Animation-Off | Well, we all knew Stacey was going to put them both through to the Top 33, but it was really fun to see the dueling animators twitch and vibrate their way across the stage. (That said, Jade was significantly better in his “Dance for Your Life” number earlier in the episode, no? And despite his relative lack of comparative screentime, BluPrint kinda outdanced Jade, yes?)

And with that, let me turn things over to you. What did you think of last night’s SYTYCD? Who provided your favorite moments? Were you like me, wishing there was more actual dancing? Sound off in the comments, and for all my reality TV news, interviews, and recaps, follow me on Twitter @MichaelSlezakTV!

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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  1. Magically Suspicious says:

    This is one of the big reasons that I hate that they’ve cut out the results show……the auditions and Vegas week really suffer for it. They’ve had scant time to introduce only a few of the dancers on any level that will make them memorable, and those dancers have all been cut now, with a couple of exceptions. It will leave a Top 20 of people that we don’t know or care about. And it doesn’t allow for any drama in wondering who will and won’t make it through Vegas. They don’t have time to put forth the ‘they can’t all make it!’ scenario as they have in seasons past. It’s made the auditions and Vegas week very lackluster, and it’s really caused the regular season to suffer. There’s no way you can’t tell from the judge’s reactions who is and isn’t in the bottom each week. I wish they’d rethink and bring back a results show. I’d be very happy with a half hour results show that allowed for the announcing of the results, dancers to perform solos, and the eliminations.

    • I think the bigger issue is that they give a much easier path to Street Dancers and hold those with some training to a MUCH HIGHER STANDARD ,,
      I think the end result is that some really good trained dancers do not make the show so that lesser skilled dancers with street skill stories can be cast ,

      • Pam says:

        That’s because it’s a tv show not a dance contest. They are really picking people they think America will like and want to vote for and therefore personality or any sort of backstory that might make you rootable count. It’s not like this is the first season and contestants know that coming in. That’s why you see so many trying so hard with over the top personalities in the auditions sometimes; they want to get the producers attention.

      • MC says:

        ITA. You said what I was thinking. I will always watch this show, but the increased emphasis on street dancers (and I actually like some of them) is a little disconcerting.

        • KevyB says:

          Add to that the fact that they then keep giving the storylines and the great judging to the street dancers and they pretty much make it impossible for a trained dancer to win this thing. The street dancers almost always make it to the final episodes and they often don’t deserve it – cough, Cyrus, cough. I want the auditions to be about auditions and everyone that ends up on the show to get equal screen time. The contestants that get no screen time during the entire audition process rarely make it far because they come into the competition shows with absolutely no fan following. Fik-Shun (honestly!) will be a great addition to the cast, but keeping both Jade and BluPrint was a joke.

      • Carrie says:

        Of the 9 seasons only 2 winners have been “street” dancers – Joshua and Russell – all others were highly trained. I personally enjoy watching those with raw talent compete against those that are technically proficient and think Fik-Shun will be fun to watch this season – he has talent and an adorable personality. Too many professional dancers can get a bit boring and hard to tell apart –

      • Lovethisshow says:

        Street dancers may not be highly trained in a classical dance forms, but they put much time and effort into building a set of skills and talents. The training and practice may take place in parks and street corners, but time, effort, and natural talent are just as important in street dance as in other forms of dance. The street dancers that make top 20 are the best and most versatile in the genre just as the ballroom dancers that make top 20 are the best and most versatile ballroom dancers of the season. Each top 20 dancer has a specialty, but to be successful in the show, the dancer must be able to adapt and use his or her strengths to give a good performance in other genres as well. That’s what make this show fun to watch.

      • pookymama says:

        This is exactly why you have someone like Mariah Spears packaging herself as the “cute krumper next door” when she is in fact a competition kid with extensive and diverse training. It drives me bananas!

        • Arnel butaya says:

          I love you @pookymama!!! Coz of liking Mariah Spears too…. I really want to see her compete in d top 20.. Hope she’ll be able to make it this time…….wioooh!!

  2. Jamie Paton says:

    I get the whole dance for your life thing, but when a dancer has to do it more than once – should they really continue in the competition?

    I mean I get that the animators are incredible and amazing at what they do – and its not like anyone can just do it either. But SYTYCD is not about being the best at your own style and if Jade, or even BluPrint can’t keep up in Vegas then how’s it fair that they will possibly get a Top 20 spot from someone with a wider range of dance experience?

    Sure personality is important, but like we already saw in the jazz round, partnering is super important in this show too and it would be a bummer for someone to have to carry another contestant (I know its happened before). Even the judging panel admitted that Jade wasn’t a very good partner.

    • wordsmith says:

      I tend to agree with you, but putting him through this week just means that they get to show his charming smile and impressive moves again next week before they cut him on the Green Mile. This last round of cuts is effectively just for show.

    • rwfblog says:

      It is quite likely the 2nd “dance for your life” was simply a trumped-up excuse to have the two animators have a dance-off. Even if it were fake in that sense, I’m glad they did it.

    • Jaime says:

      I felt the same way last year in regards to Cyrus.

  3. Margaret says:

    I’m LOVING Fik-Shun, he reminds me of a mini-Russell. It will be interesting to see how many ballroom guys they bring to the top 20 with 4 in the top 33, I think you’d have to go back to Ryan DiLello in season 6 to find the last strong popular ballroom guy they’ve had.

  4. daisyj says:

    Well, my streak of never being able to predict anything is still going strong. I was sure that the guy whose parents lost their house to keep the studio was going to run the season, and he gets dumped in Vegas with barely an explanation. I agree so far about Fik-Shun (though I worry that when he gets the Cyrus treatment I am going to turn on him out of irritation), but I found the Boston-bombing-dance-routine seriously manipulative and exploitive. Way to use tragedy to promote yourselves, kids.

  5. Ohmy says:

    As I said elsewhere — the problem with SYTYCD is that they so want to manipulate the viewer. In this case the dancers did it themselves with the so-called Boston dance.

    The idea here is that dance what you want to dance, but just say it is about cancer, or abuse, or a tragedy — and the tears come out.

    Watch it play once the competition begins.

    The best way to watch the dances is to fast forward through the set-up and just watch the dance. Then, if you want, go back and watch the explanation. I promise — fewer tears.

  6. The editing is kind of driving me crazy this year. Yes we all love Twitch and watching Adam Shankman weep from a combination of sleep deprivation and emotion is always a good time but I really hate when they cut from the routines as often as they have been this season.
    I’d just like to point out that no one, including you Michael Slezak, has commented or given any air time to the fact that Jasmine Mason is once again cruising her way through Vegas week and into the Green Mile, again. There was that huge screen time about her and her brother and the car accident last year and this year, crickets. She is an amazing dancer and she seems sweet and she is gorgeous. Why are they playing mum with her?! I really hope she makes it to the top 20 this year. She has maturity, versatility and technique. She is SO So You Think You Can Dance!

    • Miss Otis Regrets... says:

      They have to extremely attractive Jasmines this year. They may go with Cyrus’ ex instead.

  7. K. says:

    It was fast and furious last night and I really couldn’t keep up on my fav’s… So does anyone know if Caleb Brauner from Memphis auditions made it last night or not????

  8. justjack says:

    What happened to Tommy?! I thought sure he’d be in the top 20. Same with Jennifer “not Beals” (eating disorder girl)… thought sure she’d make it.

    • Meg says:

      I think her downfall was that she didn’t learn/practice the contemporary routine with a partner. I did notice that her and her partner’s roles were reversed, when the camera panned out to show the whole group dancing.

  9. Britter says:

    I am a fan of the super condensed Vegas week. Just get me to my top twenty. And no results show is fine with me. In fact, I know a lot of people who had stopped watching, and are this season picking it up again because they’re compressed into one weekly episode.

  10. Leela says:

    Do the producers really think people tune in to see dancers get injured? I’m not particularly squeamish but this is actually nauseating – especially when the footage is shown over and over and over – and in slow motion! Plus, injuries are later either dismissed with 5 seconds of footage “she was too hurt to come to Vegas” or the contestant then sails through further auditions without a word of explanation other than “I put ice on it.” This to me is the equivalent of the joke contestants on Idol, valuable footage is wasted on dramatic nonsense that could be spent introducing us to legitimate contenders.

  11. Eli says:

    Krumpgirl lives!

    PS: Slezak, fick-shun is an animator, not a bboy.

  12. Meghan says:

    Does anyone know when this was filmed? I think if it happened right around the time of the Boston bombings, it would be a bit more understandable that they wanted to do a dance centered around it. That being said, it was really manipulative especially considering what they were dancing to.
    Who was the guy who won another country’s SYTYCD? Was it Armen? I remember liking the guy, but I can’t remember who it was. Also, so sad Tommy Tibball and his crazy feet were eliminated.

    • Kate'shomesick says:

      He was one of the ballroom guys that made it through…just re-watched it: the smallest one, the farthest to the right (in the line of ballroom boys) if I’m not mistaken…

    • Felix says:

      The guy who won SYTYCD Armenia was Paul Karmiryan! Rooting for him wooo

    • Jill says:

      Hannah Simone posted on Instagram “7 weeks ago” her dressing room sign & said “Day two in Vegas with the incredible SYTYCD team!” I had to look it up, because last night I wondered the same thing

    • Tara J. says:

      It was right around the time of the Boston incident b/c I remember Nigel tweeting about this particular routine taking place.

  13. Sarah El says:

    I’m devastated the amazing Nick (the Atlas-esque contemporary black MAN just what a MAN he was) was cut so early (jazz round) with barely an acknowledgement. He was my favorite from the auditions and I was expecting him in the Top 20 like instantly! I’m really glad Jenna, the Jasmines, and Mariah Spears are still in the competition (and cutie patootie Paul the Ballroom champ).

  14. Rob Olivier says:

    Please tell me that this year the competition will be 2 nights a week instead of one 2 hour night like last year. They need to show the performances and have another performance before elimination. Also, let me throw my hat in for Malea(perky blonde), the 2 Jasmines and Fik-Shun for the top 20.

  15. Lana says:

    I am all for the result show coming back but I don’t see it happening. I Love to watch the dance routines so I’m all for getting past Vegas and start the dancing that they let us watch completely!!! This is soo my favorite show.

  16. Midori says:

    Does that mean next week will just be us finding out who the top 20 are? Because I find that to be incredibly boring.

    • Meg says:

      I think the first hour will be the Green Mile and the second hour will be the contestants dancing for the first time. Cat said something about “all the contestants dance on our stage for the first time” in voiceover over the credits.

  17. Radha says:

    I take it that the Jason Kidd–the white animator guy–didn’t get through? We missed the first hour and I didn’t see him in the second. Did anyone see what happened to him? When was he cut?

    As far as I’m concerned they almost always cut the people that I really find interesting in favor of bland personalities. I still am seething about that female Ryan that one year. She grated on my nerves.

  18. LD says:

    does anyone know if there’s a list floating around of the 33 that are left? I’m guessing we’ll “meet” the 13 that don’t make the top 20 next week… but I’m curious. Also, where was the adorably quirky dancer from the Austin auditions, the one who did haunted house makeup??

    • Aprilcot says:

      According to a spoiler site (so the accuracy could be iffy) the remaining 33 are:

      Jade Zuberi
      Dorian “BluPrint” Hector
      Curtis Holland
      Alan Bersten
      Gene Bersten
      Emilio “Millie” Dosal
      Tucker Knox
      Markus Shields
      Nico Greetham
      Serge Onik
      Paul Karmiryan
      Yiannis Logothetis
      Ryan Johnson
      David Lorenzo
      Aaron Turner
      Carlos Garland

      Amy Yakima
      Jenna Johnson
      Jasmine Mason
      Malece Miller
      Jasmine Harper
      Mariah Spears (aka Krumpgirl)
      Alexis Juliano
      Alex Kessinger
      Brittany Cherry
      Gabby Marquez
      Hayley Erbert
      Kayla Bingham
      Justine Lutz
      Makenzie Dustman
      Marissa Milele
      Megan Branch

      I generally don’t like to be spoiled, and I’ve stayed away from finding out the top 20, but it really bugged me how little we saw of some of the remaining contestants. Hope this helps!

  19. MLO says:

    Personally, glad they got rid of the results show. Refuse to commit to watching something that takes up two nights of my week, especially when the majority of the second show is just fluff.

  20. Marie Tibball says:

    SYTYCD did it again Season 10 let the real dancers go and keep who they think America wants to watch. In the REAL dance world fans want to see real dancers. Perfect ex. Tommy Tibball.

  21. Thea says:

    Super bummed about Elyse the trapeze girl being sent packing in the first round without us even seeing a second of her dancing again. Her audition last week was my personal favorite of Memphis, and in my top 5 of the season. =(

  22. waterbug says:

    Nigel is pushing his favorite Malece Miller down everyone’s throat again. Malece (an average dancer at best) got more air time than all the dancers put together. Her audition routine was no more than a series of gymnastic poses and she is looks as stiff as a board. i know I should give her a chance, but it reminds me of how Nigel dropped a world class ballroom dancer last season for….Ryan. I can see the same scenario evolving with Malece edging out real talent because she is Nigel’s fav.

    • Kate'shomesick says:

      I have to agree. I get that Malece is fresh-faced, she seems charismatic and likeable but her audition/solo piece is really weak. If that’s the best she can do…that really is not what dance is…

    • Nigel Is Pervy says:

      I completely agree, Waterbug. It’s disgusting to watch Nigel literally lick his lips at 18 year old Malece Miller. He’s so disgusting. I wish they would replace Nigel with Wade Robson or Debbie Allen.

      • Dance Fan! says:

        I wish Nigel would stop asking Cyrus’ ex girlfriend (Jasmine sp?) such hurtful personal questions. He should keep it to the dancing. That poor girl has been mercilessly tortured on TV over a past relationship that obviously left her heartbroken.

    • CAM says:

      Glad to know I am not the only one who is not a Malece fan. She’s talented, but better dances were let go. There’s something lacking in her performances, some sort of disconnect.

    • Pong says:

      I find Malece weak for this competiion! Her dancing is average. She can dance but she can’t connect one bit.
      I am hating on Nigel! Tommy Tiball over this girl on any given day.

      Fik-shun on the other hand is a heavily upgraded Joshua Allen. I think he’s the one dancer who’ll nail every single choreography and then some. I hope lifts in choreographies won’t be his downfall. And if they added Animation in the live shows as a category, it’s over for the contemporary jazz dancers. Over.

      • Deborah says:

        Hahaha. If animation became a part of the live shows for real, all the contestants except the animators should prepare their own solo every week cuz whoever pulls that style out of the hat, will be on the chopping block. I do think it is still a bit unfair that they don’t include tap and or animation, because what’s the point in having amazing tappers and animators on the show when they won’t be able to do their own style unless they’re in the bottom or unless they make it to the finals?

  23. Lana says:

    Wade Robson is too busy suing the Jackson’s for allegedly being sexually abused by Michael. Nigel is this show whether you like it or not. Its his baby and if not for him we would not be able to enjoy all these wonderful dancers and dances. I’ve been a dance fan ever since I discovered Fred Astaire and the wonderful musicals of the late 20’s and on but Nigel and SYTYCD showed me soo many different styles of dance I never knew of and even though I knew about the wonderful choreographers I never got to actualy meet them and now I know them by name and face so my world of dance has become even better, all thanks to Nigel. So even though he can get me irritated I love him for giving me SYTYCD and hope he will continue to fight for this show. However I am thrilled he is off of AI.

    • Love The Voice says:

      Lana, SYTYCD is one of my favorite shows, but as an expat Brit I can tell you that there are very valid reasons why he is known as “Nasty Nigel” in the U.K. Who can blame his wife for getting fed up with all the lecherous behavior towards young girls. No wonder she divorced him in 2012.

    • Dance Fan! says:

      I wish Nigel would probably appreciate the artistry on the dance and be less caught up on looks. He wants girls who look like Lolita Barbie dolls and is down on guys who dance too feminine. I love SYTYCD, but it is sad when Nigel cuts über talented female dancers with fun personalities because of he doesn’t like their nose or whatever. Or when he makes prejudiced comments about certain male dancers he deems too unmanly. Beauty in art comes in many forms and variety is the spice of life. Although at least Nigel seems slightly less lecherous this seasons relative to the past. Or perhaps they are editing that out, who knows.

    • SYTYCD season 13 says:

      Nigel needs to lay off asking Jasmine Harper such horribly personal questions about her past relationship with Cyrus. She seems heartbroken and he will not let up asking her about the breakup. Keep it to the dancing, Nigel, and stop harassing her.

      • NW lady says:

        Couldn’t agree more! …and the timing of the first round of questions was horrible! Just before auditioning, when she should be focused and calm, he asks her personal questions! What was he thinking!! ….and then last night… asking who broke if off?…. Shame on you Niget!…none of your business, nor none of the public’s business! Leave her alone!

    • Sheilalala says:


  24. tomila benefield says:

    What happened to the girl from Colorado that auditioned in Boston? The ballet dancer that had the really big brother that got her there. She went straight through to Vegas but I did not even see her or here her mentioned in the Vegas cuts. Her name is Jenny or Jenna Baglia maybe, hard to understand what she said her name was.

    • moonshine says:

      Totally agree with you tomila, i was looking for her too – never saw her again. she was a favorite and WHAT happened to Anthony Savoy??? For those of us who actually follow these artists, the show could concentrate on continuity just a little and NOT feature the same people (ie Malece, Malice). Perhaps i missed something….. anyone out there to enlighten me?

  25. gretchen says:

    I love SYTYCD…My favorite thing about summer. Fik-Shun is a mini Twitch, not Jousha…. Twitch should have won that year and everyone knows it. Where is Jousha anyways???? I see Twitch every where….LOVE LOVE LOVE me some Twitch. Back to season ten….. Is the guy who was in the car accident in the top 33? I can’t remember his name… “That’s my nerd” boy was good and entertaining, I am very disappointed he is gone. Fik-Shun and Jenna are very talented and pick up the other styles so well. I will be routing for them to do well. I just hope it wont be all about the Animators.

    • Arnel butaya says:

      that boy u’re referring to was not eliminated.. he’s on his way to d green mile..and hopefully to d top 20. I like Jenna and fik-shunn also, but I love Mariah spears (aka krumpgirl) more… Hope u noticed her.”) hehe

  26. LLou2 says:

    I did not get to see the show here in Colorado Springs—unfortunately because of two fires that have destroyed 389 homes and killed 2 people—but I agree with you that they cut away to the judges’ reactions way to much. It was driving me crazy during the auditions. Please make them stop.

  27. Arnel Butaya says:

    I love Mariah Spears (aka krumpgirl) since she auditioned last season. So glad she’s back… hope she can make it to d top 20… and i’ll be rooting also to Fik-shun, Jenna Johnson, Amy Yakima, and Alex Kissenger. woooohh SYTCD S10 soooo rock!!!

  28. Arnel butaya says:

    Please…STTYCD S10 let Mariah Spears (aka krumpgirl) to play a part of this season’s top 20… Give her a chance to prove herself. She auditioned last season, but you drove her away, but she’s not giving up…coz now there she is.. Stronger as always… “) please… I am begging you…,….!

  29. Seamus says:

    I’m not a fan of the trumped up drama on this show. I definitely enjoy a little back story but I don’t understand why they just can’t keep it about the dancing. Show more of the routines in Vegas week with comments about style. Also, there’s no way that the show can make them stay up all night two nights in a row. Just from a legal standpoint, they can’t do it. There are rules. What we’ll see next week is the dancers performing in their styles in a group number. They already know who they’re picking for the season way before these vegas auditions. It’s TV.

  30. Harry Lime says:

    Does anyone know what happened to Tyrone Cobham Jr.?

  31. Duane says:

    I’m OKAY with the regular season show being one night per week, I just wish they’d give it a bit more time so they didn’t need to rush through everything.

  32. emmagination says:

    What happend to emilio dosal??..avent reali been seeing his videos in d new sytycd10 edit…he z reali good