Date of Episode: Tuesday / 06/25/2013
Top 20 Perform
In an inventive way to introduce the official start to Season 10, the Top 20 — along with choreographers, judges and crew members — saunter their way through the backstage area and onto the stage in a Broadway number, set to “Puttin' on the Ritz.” Once the Top 20 contestants arrive onstage, hostess Cat Deeley introduces the finalists: Alexis Juliano, Aaron Turner, Amy Yakima, Alan Bersten, Brittany Cherry, Dorian “BluPrint” Hector, Hayley Erbert, Carlos Garland, Jasmine Harper, Curtis Holland, Jasmine Mason, Du-Shaunt “Fik-Shun” Stegall, Jenna Johnson, Jade Zuberi, Makenzie Dustman, Nico Greetham, Malece Miller, Paul Karmiryan, Mariah Spears and Tucker Knox.
Adding to the excitement, Nigel Lythgoe and Mary Murphy are joined at the judges' table tonight by showman extraordinaire Wayne Brady.
Every dancer has ten seconds to let us know about themselves, and Hip-Hop dancer Mariah is up first. She's 19, an only child, sleeps with her eyes open, lives on a farm, has a turtle that ate her dog, and has two false front teeth. Her partner, Contemporary dancer Carlos, is 24 years old, likes Judy Garland, has a black belt in karate and is a master at ping-pong. Dancing to Fantasia's “Get It Right,” the pair performs a Jason Gilkison-choreographed Jive. Among the lifts and kicks, Carlos deftly performs an amazing leap over his partner to get the crowd's mojo going for the evening. Mary says the number was full of supersonic speed and jokes with the dancers about how hard it was. She did think the performance was a little bit labored, and the pair needed to try harder to make it as lighting-quick as it could have been, but overall this was a great start. Wayne says the number was great, although a bit frantic, and he praises Carlos' athleticism and says Mariah played the part of a 1960s bombshell. Nigel comments that while the couple wasn't technically sound, he feels they will be voted safe for the week since they were so entertaining.
Next up, nineteen-year-old Jazz dancer Jasmine Mason is a cat enthusiast: she has cat tattoos and says she loves felines more than she does people. Her partner is 19-year-old Minnesota native Alan Bersten, a Latin Ballroom dancer who loves blue, originally hails from Russia and is the youngest of his family. The couple has the distinction of dancing a piece about love being blind, brought to you from former-contestant-turned-choreographer Travis Wall. In an unusual twist, the number requires them to wear blindfolds as they perform to Ingrid Michaelson's rendition of the staple “Can't Help Falling in Love.” Wayne says the dance was beautiful and he loved that he wasn't worried about the pair messing anything up or hurting themselves because of the control they had even while blindfolded. Nigel notes how much was being asked of a brand-new couple in week one — they not only had to act like they're in love, but then Travis tossed in the blindfold wrinkle — and he praises Jasmine for her ability to show emotion. Mary raves that she just fell in love with these two, saying Jasmine looked like a little butterfly and she too admired the amount of trust the pair had in one another.
Nineteen-year-old contemporary dancer Malece takes the stage next, revealing that she's obsessed with enchiladas, has dyed her hair every color in the spectrum and hates feet, which is unfortunate for a dancer. Her partner, Animator Jade, suffers from coulrophobia (fear of clowns) and arachnophobia, loves bubbles and cats, and his nickname is Soul. The pair also performs a Travis number, but this time the dancers are movie stars as Felix da Housecat's “Silver Screen (Shower Scene)” provides the soundtrack for this blockbuster. Malece gets rave reviews, but Jade does not. Nigel begins saying the pair danced the number poorly in practice — but the crowd boos him before he can finish and say the pair danced it amazingly tonight! Malece has matured, just as Nigel hoped, and Jade made a great partner. Wayne quips that Jade turned the show into “So You Think You Can Pimp,” but he advises that Jade needs to step up his lines since he's competing with guys that have been doing this for years. Mary comments that she loves Jade's confidence, even in doing a routine outside his comfort zone, and says Malece's internal diva had come out in full force tonight.
Jenna has apparently caught a frog in her throat, so we're not able to learn much about her except that this Ballroom dancer is 19. Her partner, Contemporary dancer Tucker, is 23, wanted to be a mermaid or a pilot, has three adopted siblings, is superstitious and a fussy eater. The couple, who have dubbed themselves Team Tu-Na, dance to Tyce Diorio's Broadway choreography, set to Kevin Spacey's “That's All” from the soundtrack of “Beyond the Sea.” The fast-paced, fun and fanciful number earns rave reviews from the audience and judges. Mary thinks it was fun and flirtatious and calls Tyce “Dr. Feelgood,” since a lot of his Broadway numbers, like this one, just make her feel good. Wayne calls Tucker amazing and says he's reminded of Donald O'Connor; he also comments that Jenna had taken it old school as well and reminded him of Cyd Charisse. Nigel agrees, telling the pair they are a power couple, and he looks forward to seeing them perform all season.
The skinny on Latin Ballroom dancer Brittany is that she's 19, hates sponges, is deaf in one ear, apparently can fit six spoons on her face and needs to watch the Disney channel after seeing a scary movie. BluPrint, her partner, is 20, likes roller-coasters despite his fear of heights, wishes he could teleport, likes playing with people's earlobes and, although he can't whistle like a human, he can like a bird. This oddball pair of an Animator and a Ballroom dancer take on a Sean Cheesman Afro-Jazz routine, and even though Sean realizes the absurdity of having an Animator and a Ballroom dancer performing Afro-Jazz, he hopes the crowd will be on the edge of their seats. The pair dances to Professor Trance & The Energisers' “Drumming Circle.” Wayne notes that BluPrint is carrying on in the tradition of guys like tWitch and also jokes that he can't believe Brittany had the “motherland” in her. Nigel remarks that the Ballroom dancer looked at home in the jungle, and he also tells BluPrint that he has just performed one of the best Afro-Jazz numbers he's seen on the show. Mary admits she thought the number was going to be a train wreck when she found out what genre this pair drew, but instead it turned out they were both on the Hot Tamale Train!
Next, Cat introduces the strangest pair of the night: Nigel and Adam running through a piece of their routine for July 27th's National Dance Day. The duo also has a skit about their routine on Funnyordie.com.
Coral Springs, Florida, native Alexis is an 18-year-old “Belieber” whose folks own a furniture company, and she likes to go fishing. The Tapper's partner, Contemporary dancer Nico, is also 18, likes cupcakes, Selena Gomez, and can make weird sounds, such as bubbles. The duo performs a “goofy-cool” Christopher Scott Hip-Hop number set to Labrinth's “Last Time.” Nigel comments that Alexis is a stunning Tapper and one of his favorites this year, and says Nico is a fantastic Contemporary partner. Unfortunately, he feels the dancers were unable to live up to their potential tonight, and although he does feel that the public will support them for now, they will need to work to adapt to the routines, otherwise they won't stay on the show for long as they both deserve to. Mary agrees that even though they're both tremendous at what they do, this dance was more “Pleasant-Hop” than Hip-Hop. Wayne says he thinks it was good job but also advises the pair that they should continue to try to adapt and not rest on their laurels.
Contemporary dancer Makenzie loves her fish Patrick and sushi, likes vampires, is double-jointed and enjoys making rap videos. Her partner, Ballroom dancer Paul, has a sweet tooth and claims he can solve the Rubik's cube in five minutes. The couple is tasked with performing a Jason Gilkison Viennese waltz to Avril Lavigne's “I'm With You,” and they pull it off with flying colors. Mary says she thought the number was a beautiful fairy tale and the couple seemed at ease performing it. Wayne jokes that the pair should be on top of a wedding cake and remarks that their performance was so fluid, while Nigel notes that the Viennese waltz is one of the most romantic Ballroom numbers, and this one was very well done.
Contemporary dancer Jasmine H. is up next and tells us she likes red but wears pink, loves killer whales, has a fraternal twin and likes to whistle. Tap dancer Aaron is her partner, and he's a DJ, loves Batman and once dressed up as Pee-wee Herman. The age-old question of what happens when a Contemporary dancer and a Tapper meet Sonya Tayeh is about to be answered, as the pair performs a piece from the Motor City Madwoman to the tune of Delta Rae's “Bottom of the River.” Wayne knowingly sounds like a creepy old man as he ponders where Jasmine was when he was 20. “If Lil' C was here, he'd say you are a little chocolate Amazonian fool and imbued of all the strength that you draw upon of the divergent forces that make you a force to be reckoned with.” Nigel praises the quality of work that Sonya Tayeh brings to the show every week, and he also acknowledges former contestant Emilio's loss (an injury) as being the show's gain since we now have Aaron in his place. Combine that with Jasmine's legs that won't quit, and it looks like they too are another power couple. Mary agrees, joking that the number should be renamed “Jasmine dang' got some legs.” Mary also speaks highly of the technique that she showed and recalls that in Vegas, Aaron had said that he wanted to be more than just a Tap dancer, and it's now apparent that he is!
Topeka, Kansas's own Hayley says she wants a pet hedgehog and loves candy. The Contemporary dancer is partnered with Tapper Curtis, who likes the beach, animal movies and has a pet monkey — but it's a stuffed monkey. Chris Scott put together a sexy Hip-Hop routine for the pair to perform, and Delilah's “Go” provides the mood for the piece. Nigel says Alexis and Nico should have performed like that, and calls the piece tremendous. Mary comments that she liked the pair's stage presence; she calls Hayley a vixen and says she admires Curtis for being able to keep up with her. Wayne also says he admired his “little brother's” ability to keep up with with Hayley.
The final number of the night is also the second Sonya piece of the evening. This performance features Jazz dancer Amy, who is 19, Ukrainian, hates blood even though her dad's a doctor and collects Christmas socks. Her partner is Fik-Shun, who likes the color red, has two dogs and smacks his lips a lot. Sonya reveals that the number is about Amy having a lot of unresolved issues and problems, represented by Fik-Shun, which we see performed to The Valerie Project's “Elsa.” Sonya and the rest of the audience are amazed, giving the first standing ovation of the season. Mary says Amy is one of the best and most dynamic dancers this season — it blows her mind. She also asks Fik-Shun what this was like for him, and he answers that it definitely took him to a place he doesn't necessarily show everyone. Wayne jokes with Fik-Shun that he wants to get serious; he also gets naked and dances with a white chick, a comment that turns Amy beet red. Nigel refers to Amy as the “beast” of Season 10 and compliments Fik-Shun, since the Hip-Hopper has never taken a Contemporary class before this week.
It's America's turn now to grab the phone and vote for their favorite dancers. Tune in next week to find out if your favorite stays in the competition.
"Puttin' on the Ritz"Buy on iTunes
"Get It Right"Buy on iTunes
"Can't Help Falling In Love (Live At Daytrotter)"Buy on iTunes
"Silver Screen (Shower Scene)"Buy on iTunes
Felix da Housecat
"That's All"Buy on iTunes
Kevin Spacey (Beyond The Sea soundtrack)
"Drumming Circle"Buy on iTunes
Professor Trance and The Energizers