Monday, November 26, 2007

SF Chronicle Shows Love For SYTYCD

The San Francisco Chronicle's Dance Correspondent, Rachel Howard, attended Friday's show in Oakland. She has a few reservations and critiques, but overall, thinks So You Think You Can Dance is a positive influence:

If "SYTYCD" is becoming part of our default national arts education, frankly, we could do worse. It's often criticized for cliched, commercial choreography, and on Friday you could see why. However heartfelt Mia Michaels' flower dance in memory of her father may be, it's sentimental mush (her dueling-princes showdown for top two male finalists Danny and Neil, though, is brilliant), and the imagination behind something like Wade Robson's swamp-creatures group number hardly stands up to the simultaneous wit and emotional complexity of a master like Mark Morris.

But a lot of the dance-making here is fantastic by any standard, especially the ballroom (Danny and Lacey Schwimmer smoking through that samba) and the hip-hop (Sabra and Dominic building heat in Sparks' strangely touching chair duet). And a lot of what the audience loves best tilts toward artistic ambitions, like Hok Konishi and Jaimie Goodwin in Robson's hummingbird dance, resurrected Friday.