Our Favorite "SYTYCD" Routine From Each Season's Winner
Season 1: Nick Lazzarini - "All That Jazz"
In this classically sassy Broadway number, Nick Lazzarini—America's Very First Favorite Dancer—gave us turns for days, alongside bestie (and runner-up) Melody Lacayanga.
This fiery salsa landed right in ballroom dancer Benji Schwimmer's comfort zone. It also marked the first time he reunited on the show with his cousin and co-auditionee, Heidi Groskreutz.
This sleek '80s jazz number made us fall even deeper in love with choreographer Mandy Moore—and Sabra's every leap and kick were perfectly clean and crisp.
Joshua's duet with Katee Shean is memorable as much for the storyline as the dancing. It's hard to believe it was one of NappyTabs' first "lyrical hip-hop" routines.
Believe it or not, this dance was Travis Wall's first piece of choreography for "SYTYCD"! He created the perfect showcase for Jeanine and Jason Glover's fantastic chemistry.
Season 6: Russell Ferguson - "Hazardous"
Russell was the first krumper to win "SYTYCD", so it's only natural that his most memorable dance was this one—performed in his own style, alongside krumping legend Lil C.
Season 7: Lauren Froderman - "Collide"
Who could forget Travis Wall's prom night-themed choreography? Lauren and Kent Boyd perfectly captured the innocence of teenage love.
Season 8: Melanie Moore - "Turn To Stone"
Melanie was just 19 when she won "So You Think You Can Dance," and yet she danced with such maturity and elegance. Travis Wall's statue-inspired routine is a testament to the trusting partnership she had with Marko Germar.
Season 9: Chehon Wespi-Tschopp - "Leave"
Season 9 was the first time the show had both a male and a female winner—and #TeamBallet took the day. But while Chehon may have identified as a ballet boy, his committed performance of Stacey Tookey's routine showed how well he could adapt to non-ballet choreography.
Season 9: Eliana Girard - "Adagio For Strings"
The other member of #TeamBallet gave an emotionally captivating performance in Mia Michaels' memorable piece about hatred, which Michaels said was inspired by the way rams fight.
Season 10: Amy Yakima and Fik-Shun Stegall - "Elsa"
Season 10's two winners were paired from the beginning! In this Sonya Tayeh contemporary duet, hip-hopper Fik-Shun surprised the judges with his ability to partner Amy, and Amy's strong technique did Tayeh's choreo proud.
Season 11: Ricky Ubeda - "Vow"
If we had to describe Ricky's technique in one word, it would be flawless. This contemporary duet with Jessica Richens showed him doing what he does better than almost anyone else.
Season 12: Gaby Diaz - "I'm Really Hot"
Gaby auditioned as a tap dancer, but was able to shine no matter what style she was given. This hip-hop dance, choreographed by Phoenix & Pharside, showed off her remarkable versatility.
Season 13: Kida Burns - "Manolo"
Kida attacked every. single. dance. with passion and personality. This duet with Tate McRae was one of our all-time faves (and props to Tate for keeping up with him, despite not being a hip-hop dancer!).
Dance Spirit is beyond excited to announce the first round of 2017 Future Star winners! Every year, DS partners with competitions to recognize dancers with exceptional presence and ability. The second round of winners will be featured in our January issue, so stay tuned!
You're obsessed with class videos. We're obsessed with class videos. The passion, energy, and talent showcased in these clips, which give us an insider-y peek at the commercial dance world's hottest classes, are totally irresistible.
But at what point does the phenomenon go from being a good thing to a bad thing for dancers and the dance world? Is the focus on filming distracting from the work dancers are supposed to be doing in class? Are overproduced videos presenting a dangerously misleading picture of the dance world? Is the pressure to be a class video star becoming too much for dancers to handle? These are some of the questions A-list dancer and choreographer Ian Eastwood—no stranger to the class video himself—has been asking on Twitter. And they've sparked a lively, important debate.
Getting corrections from our dance instructors is how we grow, and as students, it's important that we do our best to apply every correction right away. But sometimes—whether it's because we're in physical pain, or have a lot on our minds, or are just not paying attention—those corrections don't sink in. And from a teacher's standpoint, giving the same corrections time and time again gets old very fast. Here are 10 important corrections dance teachers are tired of giving. Take them to heart!
Our favorite drama-filled, dance reality show may have ended this past fall, but "Dance Moms" stars Chloe, Kalani, and Kendall aren't about to let that end their dance careers. In fact, these dancing kweens are taking their moves to a city near you with their Irreplaceables Tour! The girls are going all out for the three-week dance production, which is taking them across the country. And these dazzling dancers aren't just content with showing off their dance skillz—they want to pass along their tips and tricks in a dance workshop where they'll lead fans in stretches and dance routines from the show.
Dance Spirit caught up with Chloe, Kalani, and Kendall to find out what they love about tour life and where they see themselves five years from now.
When most of us think of The Nutcracker, we imagine a growing Christmas tree, dancing mice, and a little girl named Clara (or Marie) traveling to the Land of Sweets. But companies around the world have been reinventing the holiday classic, changing the storyline or adding their own spectacular sets and characters. To get in the Nutcracker spirit this season, check out these out-of-the-box productions.
Aspiring ballerina Katarina Jakimier, a Dallas, TX, native, was just 12 when Dance Spirit first featured her, highlighting the innovative pointe shoe recycling program she created in her community. Now 16, Jakimier is still studying ballet intensively—this past fall she started training at the John Cranko Schule in Stuttgart, Germany—and is still on a mission to make the world a better place. Recently, she founded the Silver Swans Ballet Program, which allows senior citizens in retirement homes to experience the magic of ballet, and to reap all of its health benefits. Here, she tells us how the initiative came to be. —Courtney Bowers