SYTYCD Season 11 top 10 dancers filled the Times Union Center last night for a fast paced, routine loaded performance. The evening started with the familiar music and logo from the TV show on the back board with an introduction by producer Nigel Lithgow. The entire cast then entered the stage dressed in tails and performing Doctor Jazz with Ricky Ubeda as the horn player.
Following the opening number, multiple duets from season 11 were performed with beauty and grace. Some, such as the one featuring all the ladies dancing to Rhythm of Love, were emotional and had the audience enthralled, while others, such as the duet of Ricky Ubeda and Valerie Rockey on the swing, were obvious crowd favorites from the show. Interspersed between the 20+ dances of the first half were solos featuring each of the top ten, introduced by Nigel Lithgow. Many in the audience were thrilled with the solos, as seeing them in person allows you to hear the syncopation of the taps, feel the expanse of the leaps, wonder at the crispness of the pops, be amazed at the extension of legs and gasp at the speed of pirouettes. The first half of the program ended with the entire cast performing to Take Me To The River which earned them a standing ovation from the entire audience.
The second half of the program featured several fast, hard hitting hip hop routines such as the one performed by Emilio Dosal and Jacque LeWarne to Work. The audience rewarded the top 4 (Ricky Ubeda, Valerie Rockey, Jessica Richens and Zack Everhart, Jr), with thunderous applause after they performed to Wind Beneath My Wings. The entire cast entertained the crowd with their performance in day glo costumes and props to Bang, Bang. After the fun of watching The Last Chance Saloon, all six men performed Travis Walls’ Wave with incredible feeling and artistry. Once more, the entire cast took to the stage to perform to Till The Love Runs Out. And finally, after an amazing solo by Ricky Ubeda, the cast ended the program as cheerleaders dancing to Shake It Out. The audience rewarded the fabulous dancers with another standing ovation.
It was an evening of great artistry and amazing talent. My only request would be that in the future, the names of the dancers be added to the backboard during each performance, and perhaps the name of the choreographer as well.
Thanks to FSCJ Artist Series, The Times Union Center, 19 Entertainment and Dick Clark Productions for bringing this evening of wonderful dance to Jacksonville, Florida.