Dancing off the Edge

with Jenny T. Partridge

SYTYCD?–Top 20

Posted by jennytpartridge on June 9, 2007

So, here are the finalists. For the most part, WHO THE HECK are they? Not anyone shown in the audition shows. I guess we’ll find out. From the Fox web site:

Girls:

Anya Garnis, 25, is a Latin Ballroom dancer from New York, NY. Anya has been living in the U.S. for six years after growing up in Russia. She has been dancing with partner Pasha Kovalev, also a finalist, for nine years.

Jaimie Goodwin, 19, is a Contemporary dancer from Virginia Beach, VA. Jaimie danced in competitions with Season Two contestant Travis before coming onto the show.

Lauren Gottlieb, 18, is a Contemporary/Jazz dancer who currently lives in Sherman Oaks, CA. Lauren is originally from Scottsdale, AZ. After moving to California, she landed a spot dancing with Shakira at the Grammy Awards. She has been dancing since she was 2 years old.

Sabra Johnson, 19, is a Contemporary dancer from Roy, UT, with training in Ballet and Jazz. She hopes to pursue dancing as a professional career.

Ashlee Langas, 19, is a Contemporary/Jazz dancer from Tyler, TX. Ashlee has spent her life dancing in all sorts of settings from dance theaters to high school productions.

Shauna Noland, 18, is a Contemporary dancer from North Hollywood, CA. She has been dancing for 15 years and also has an avid love of singing.

Jessi Peralta, 24, is a Hip-Hop dancer from Valley Village, CA. She has danced in front of President Bill Clinton at the Apollo and has performed at Madison Square Garden.

Faina Savich, 21, is a Latin Ballroom dancer from Brooklyn, NY. Following in her brother Stanislav’s footsteps (he was a finalist in Season Two), Faina grew up in Moscow and has been living in the U.S. for six years.

Lacey Schwimmer, 18, is a Swing and International Latin dancer from Redlands, CA. Following in the footsteps of her brother and dance partner, Benji, who won the competition last season, Lacey has her own style which she hopes to showcase this season.

Sara Von Gillern, 23, is a Hip-Hop/B-girl dancer from Ft. Collins, CO. While she started as a journalism major at Colorado College, dancing has always been her main love. She is a dance instructor and was one of 30 people from all over the world selected to be part of the Red Bull: Beat Rider program, which gave her the chance to work with some of the biggest names in the Hip-Hop/Breaking field.

Boys:

Jimmy Arguello, 21, is a Contemporary dancer from Miami, FL. After taking his first dance class in middle school, Jimmy, at first focused on running in track and field, changed directions completely and found his true calling in dance.

Kameron Bink, 20, is a Contemporary/Hip-Hop dancer from Coral Springs, FL. Known for his distinct red-star hair, Kameron brings over 15 years of dance training to the show and hopes the experience will bring him new and exciting opportunities as he pursues a professional dance career.

Cedric Gardner, 23, is a Hip-Hop dancer from New Berlin, WI. He started training at 18 at University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, then moved two-years later to Los Angeles, where he received a full scholarship with Monsters of Hip Hop.

Neil Haskell, 20, is a Contemporary Jazz dancer from Clarence Center, NY. Neil is currently training in New York City, where he performed in the play “The Times They are A-Changin’” on Broadway and was named Male Dancer of the Year in 2005 by the American Dance Awards Competition.

Hok Konishi, 22, is a B-boy dancer from Los Angeles, CA. Born in Tokyo, Hok spent much of his youth in Oxford, England.

Pasha Kovalev, 27, is a Latin Ballroom dancer from Fort Lee, NJ. Pasha is originally from Russia and has trained with numerous professional ballroom dancers. He has been dancing with partner Anya Garnis, also a finalist, for nine years.

Ricky Palomino, 25, is a Contemporary dancer from Phoenix, AZ. Ricky also enjoys singing (he recently recorded his first CD), and he is a master teacher and choreographer.

Dominic Sandoval, 21, is a B-boy/Hip-Hop dancer from Roseville, CA. Born in Sacramento, he started his hip-hop training in January of this year.

Jesús Solorio, 23, is a Contemporary/Jazz dancer from Paso Robles, CA. Jesús makes his own wine at his family vineyard.

Danny Tidwell, 23, is a Contemporary/Jazz dancer from New York, NY, whose brother Travis Wall was last season’s runner-up. Danny was previously involved with the American Ballet Company.

Okay, so PLEASE tell me that this is NOT a huge example of what I have been whining about, re: Jessie Peralta.

Jessi Peralta, 24, is a Hip-Hop dancer from Valley Village, CA. She has danced in front of President Bill Clinton at the Apollo and has performed at Madison Square Garden.

Wow. how surprising is that? “I did NOT dance with that woman!” Uh, okay. Scary. I’m not thrilled with the choices, and I’m hoping it’s because I don’t KNOW the choices. Please tell me that’s it. We’ll see.

One of the dancers hails from Roy, Utah. Still waiting to hear “Utah” connections. And of course, Lacey comes from a Mormon family. So, should be interesting. I HOPE, anyway.

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3 Responses to “SYTYCD?–Top 20”

  1. Cele said

    Thank you for giving a run down. I missed a few of the episodes and thought they all looked unfamiliar because of that (I recognized a few so that wasn’t totally truthful.) When it came down to Hok and Twitch in the last selection I was sweating it. I remember seeing Twitches’ audition and being wowwed by his controll and choreography. I am surprised by how many professionals are in this competition. Is that unusual? Or the norm?

  2. For the most part, it’s the norm. My daughter has taken classes from Nick, and Jaymz, from the other two seasons, at various dance conferences. Most of the people who make it through want to make a living out of dancing. Hard to do.

  3. Cele said

    I just watched the Wednesday night episode. This is my first year watching SYTYCD, I’m kind of confused by some who made it through to the final Las Vegas night, and surprised by maybe who didn’t. If they have to dance for their lives, I think it should be to the music they just bombed or were questionable performing to. But I guess that would be asking too much.

    How did Faina and Jessie make it through? I’m really confused.

    Now they get down to the real competitiion. I am looking forward to this. I agree it is hard to make a living as a dancer when you’re off Broadway or not treading the boards for a big name company, but it can be done and these people want to be professional dancers, the competition should be fierce.

    I’m thinking so far my early favorite is Hok for the guys, I’m not sure about the girls.

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