'So You Think You Can Dance' cuts Paris Torres and Tony Bellissimo
By Reality TV World staff, 06/12/2009
Paris Torres and her partner Tony Bellissimo became the first two finalists eliminated from So You Think You Can Dance's fifth season during last night's live results show on Fox.
Paris, a 19-year-old contemporary dancer from Issaquah, WA, and Tony, a 20-year-old hip hop dancer from Buffalo, NY, found themselves among the bottom three couples based on home viewer votes cast immediately following Wednesday night's performance episode. They were then ousted by the show's three judges after the six dancers each performed a solo routine.
"We tried to take everything into account," So You Think You Can Dance judge Nigel Lythgoe said before he revealed the judges' unanimous decision to eliminate Paris. "It isn't just based on what we saw this evening, it isn't just based on what we saw last night. It's based on everything we know about you and also who else is in the competition. We always try and cast it so that we have all the different genres of dance in the competition being represented, when we can."
"Paris, we didn't feel tonight that you brought everything you can bring and that looking at all of the other contemporary dancers we have in the show, unfortunately you will be leaving us tonight," Nigel added.
In addition to Paris and Tony, Asuka Kondoh, a 25-year-old latin ballroom dancer who currently resides in Irvine, CA, and her partner Vitolio Jeune, a 26-year-old contemporary dancer who currently resides in Miami, FL, as well as Karla Garcia, a 23-year-old jazz and contemporary dancer who currently resides in Brooklyn, NY, and her partner Jonathan Platero, a 21-year-old salsa dancer who currently resides in New York, NY, were the other members of the bottom three vote-getters based on home viewer votes.
Tony's elimination was also a unanimous decision, according to Nigel.
"Again, all three of us are in total agreement," Nigel told the three male dancers before revealing Tony would be the one going home. "We didn't think any one of the three of you danced particularly well this evening. We didn't think that was good enough from any one of you to stay in the competition for very long, that will not keep you in this competition."
"So that means guys, one of you is leaving us tonight," Nigel told Tony and Jonathan after announcing that Vitolio would get to advance to the next round. "And we've discussed you, and again, we were sort of disappointed, you were both almost in your genres last night [and] neither one of you really brought too much."
"We thought Jonathan, at the end of the day you probably did a little bit better last night. Tonight, we were surprised Tony. You did locking, and not very well, [there was] a lot of moving around the stage but not great locking," Nigel said. "Jonathan, your dancing wasn't particularly good but your gymnastics were. So the only thing that we've taken into account now is everything we've seen in Vegas and we are keeping Jonathan."
Paris and Tony had performed a hip-hop routine choreographed by Napoleon and Tabitha D'Umo during Wednesday night's performance episode. However while they felt it was good, the judges thought it had fallen short of the high level some of the other contestants had set on Wednesday night.
"Will this be memorable? I don't think it will be... it won't be," judge Mary Murphy had told the pair after the performance. "It was just good... and good I'm afraid is not going to cut it."
"I agree with Mary, I don't think it was memorable," Nigel added. "Basically the pair of you were doing steps and it didn't feel right."
Adam Shankman -- this week's third member of the judging panel -- had elaborated on the judges' comments during Thursday night's results show.
"No," he told So You Think You Can Dance host Cat Deeley when she asked whether he was surprised to learn Paris and Tony had finished in week's bottom three couples.
"I'm on Twitter and when I checked it out after the show there was so much love for you guys on there. I had thousands of Twitters and you guys were a big part of it," Adam told Paris and Tony. "But I think it was because you were charming, I don't think it was because you hit it quite hard [last night]. The competition was really, really high last night."
In addition to Asuka and Vitolio and Karla and Jonathan, So You Think You Can Dance's Top 18 fourth-season finalists are Kayla Radomski and her partner Max Kapitannikov, Randi Evans and her partner Evan Kasprzak, Jeanine Mason and her partner Phillip Chbeeb, Caitlin Kinney and her partner Jason Glover, Melissa Sandvig and her partner Ade Obayomi, Ashley Valerio and her partner Kupono Aweau, and Janette Manrara and her partner Brandon Bryant.
So You Think You Can Dance's next episode will air Wednesday, June 17 at 8PM ET/PT on Fox, with each of the nine remaining couples performing a choreographed routine.
Then on Thursday night at 9PM ET/PT, the three couples who received the lowest number of home viewer votes will be announced. Each dancer in those three couples will then be given one last chance to impress the judges with his or her solo routine.
After all six dancers have performed, the judges will send one male and one female finalist home, revealing the Top 16.