Grab a box of tissues! There were a lot of tears and heart-warming stories in this week’s episode of So You Think You Can Dance. From dancers who have found their dreams taking them in new directions to the return of old favorites, the Season 16 contestants continue to keep us on the edge of our seats.
First up was b-boy Bailey “Bailrock” Munez (say that five times fast!) whose size has been something that caused people to bully him and question his abilities. When he took the SYTYCD stage, there was no question that he would be moving forward with a resounding yes from the judges. “You’re never too little to dream big,” Bailey said after getting his Academy ticket.
Switching gears to contemporary, bagel store heir Luke Romanzi brought his careful control to the stage. He hoped to find the next step toward his dreams of being a professional dancer on SYTYCD after being cut from Julliard’s auditions. “Julliard messed up,” D-trix said after Luke performed, and he and the rest of the judges agreed that Luke was bound for The Academy.
Someone yell shablam! Some past contestants that have had their tear-filled goodbyes in previous seasons made it back to the stage for another shot. After getting cut last season and a year of hard work, Jay came back, and Nigel didn’t seem to have a problem sending him forward this time. Dustin also returned with his iconic hat for his third attempt at SYTYCD fame.
Also returning were Elan and Jordynn Lurie, the ballroom duo who lost their footing last season and were sent home. This time, they came back with more flair and perfect spins to ride the Hot Tamale Train back to The Academy. And they brought back up! With their whole family watching, they had all the support they could want. Nigel even brought Jordynn’s grandfather up to dance with her.
The next contestant to shock us was college senior and aspiring neuroscientist Maria Babineau. While the beginning of her performance was a little shaky, some of the moves she brought out in her hip hop/robotics routine had the judges questioning reality. (Did you see her arm!?) Unfortunately, even after blowing all of the judges’ minds (Nigel’s still looking for a scientific explanation of that), Maria didn’t quite have the level of skill and technique necessary to move forward in the competition.
Contemporary dancer Sophie Pittman is chasing her dreams to be a professional dancer as she finishes out her high school career. She has a lot of work to do, but the judges think SYTYCD might just be the perfect opportunity to grow while chasing her dreams. With her whole family shedding happy tears, Sophie received her ticket to The Academy.
Next up was a street dancer who goes by “Ghost”, but Frank Crisp Jr. certainly didn’t ghost the judges or audience when it comes to skill and entertainment. “You are the definition of dance, my friend,” D-trix told Frank. We can’t wait to see what he does when he gets to The Academy.
The last Hollywood audition this week was Lauren Luteran. A 19-year-old contemporary dancer from Orlando, Florida, Lauren came to SYTYCD with a dual goal. She wants to chase her dreams, but she also wanted to raise awareness for and inspire a community. Lauren has cystic fibrosis, a disease that targets her lungs and will likely severely shorten her lifespan. Lauren is leaping over the obstacles CF has set before her (literally!). We couldn’t be more excited to see what she’ll do now that she’s Academy-bound.