'So You Think You Can Dance: The Next Generation' crowns Kida Burns the winner over JT Church
By Elizabeth Kwiatkowski, 09/13/2016
So You Think You Can Dance: The Next Generation crowned Kida Burns the franchise's youngest champion ever during Monday night's finale broadcast on Fox.
Kida, a 14-year-old hip-hop dancer from Sacramento, CA, defeated runner-up JT Church, a 10-year-old jazz dancer from Bristow, VA, for the title of "America's Favorite Dancer" based on the combination of home viewer votes cast following the last two performance shows.
Kida also won $250,000 and a future cover of Dance Spirit magazine. He called his experience on the show and getting to the Final 4 a "humbling experience."
Kida was partnered with SYTYCD All-Star Fik-Shun Stegall all season long. Fik-Shun said it was "crazy" how much Kida grew as a person and performer throughout their journey together on the show.
When Kida was declared the winner, everyone in the audience -- including his own mother and judge Nigel Lythgoe -- appeared shocked. The reaction made it seem like everyone was expecting JT to win.
"I'm really proud of myself that I made it this far and I'm just so grateful," JT said following the results.
JT was paired up with SYTYCD All-Star Robert Roldan, who said JT makes him "the happiest person ever."
Nigel, who also created So You Think You Can Dance, told JT before the announcement of Kida's victory that he won America's heart early on and the enormity of his performing talent overshadows his diminutive size, adding that his partnership with Robert was "magical."
Nigel told Kida that although he was the least-trained dancer on the show, he grew leaps and bounds and also proved himself to be an amazing choreographer at such a young age.
Tate McRae, a 12-year-old contemporary dancer from Calgary, Canada, finished in third place with her All-Star Kathryn McCormick.
Emma Hellenkamp, a 11-year-old tap dancer from San Diego, CA, claimed fourth place in the competition with her All-Star partner Gaby Diaz.