Everything We Know About “SYTYCD” Season 16


Season 16 of "So You Think You Can Dance" premieres this Monday, June 3! Need help getting through the last few days (or hours, really, EEE) before Nigel's first "Cue music"? Take a look at our roundup of all the info that's trickled out so far about the new season.

The Competitors Include Some Familiar Faces

We spotted a few dancers we know in the season's preview videos, including Dance Spirit Cover Model Search winner Sydney Burtis, James "Animated J" Jimenez (who does that truly insane split in the vid above), "Dance Moms" alum Gino Cosculluela, and ballroom siblings Stephanie and Ezra Sosa. It sounds like Vlad Kvartin, who's performed with the "Dancing with the Stars" troupe, also auditioned—which means it's shaping up to be a super-strong ballroom season.

There Are Two Brand-New Judges

And here they are in action! (Adam Rose/FOX)

Vanessa Hudgens and tWitch aren't returning to the "jidges" table this season (*tear*). In their places—at least for the audition and Academy rounds—will be legendary choreographer Laurieann Gibson and "SYTYCD" and "America's Best Dance Crew" alum Dominic "D-Trix" Sandoval.

We Might Already Know Who the All Stars Are

There's no official word yet on the identities of this season's All Stars. But at a recent promotional event, 10 our favorites—five men and five women, hmmm!—performed a fabulous rendition of Mark Kanemura's "Call Me Mother" routine. Could this be the Season 16 All Star crew?

The Live Shows Will Feature a Top 10—Not a Top 20

Season 15 Academy dancers just before they found out that only 10 of them would be moving on to the live shows (we spy Hannahlei Cabanilla!) (Adam Rose/FOX)

Yup, this was confirmed by Nigel himself: Last season's big plot twist—that 10, rather than 20, dancers would make it to the live shows—is just a fact this season.

The Show's Got a New "Look"

Not exactly sure what that means yet, but we are VERY into the 360-degree camerawork we've seen in the preview clips.

Dance on TV
(From left) Darriel Johnakin, Diego Pasillas, and Emma Sutherland (all photos by Erin Baiano)

Congratulations to Dance Spirit's 2019 Cover Model Search finalists: Darriel Johnakin, Diego Pasillas, and Emma Sutherland! One of them will win a spot on Dance Spirit's Fall 2019 cover. Learn more about the dancers on their profile pages, and then vote for your favorite below. You can vote once a day now through July 15.

We also want you to get social! We'll be factoring social media likes and shares into our final tallies. Be sure to show your favorite finalist some love on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, sharing their profile pages and using the hashtag #DanceSpiritCMS.

Cover Model Search
Liz Imperio teaching at Hollywood Vibe, Courtesy of Hollywood Vibe

It's an increasingly common scenario: A talented dancer wins big at a competition, is offered an assistantship with a famous faculty member, and ends up leaving her hometown studio to travel with a convention. Convention-hopping has obvious benefits. Every event generates new content for dancers to post on social media, gives them a better shot at ending up on their favorite choreographers' accounts, lets them learn from the best of the best, and helps them make valuable connections. "Traveling is a great way for dancers to gain admirers around the country," says Jen Jarnot, owner of Artistic Fusion Dance Academy in Thornton, CO. "That's something every dancer craves." So it's no surprise that weekend FOMO has been blazing through studios like wildfire.

But is this jet-setter lifestyle really the most effective road to take? Can weekends of dancing with top talent truly replace the bread and butter of daily work at your home studio? The answer, according to most industry experts, is no. We asked five pros to explain why.

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