'So You Think You Can Dance' wraps auditions, reveals Top 20
By Reality TV World staff, 06/05/2009
So You Think You Can Dance revealed the identities of its Top 20 fifth-season finalists during last night's broadcast of the Fox reality dancing competition.
Thousands of hopefuls auditioned for So You Think You Can Dance's fifth season by attending open casting calls in New York, NY; Miami, FL; Los Angeles, CA; Denver, CO; Memphis, TN; or Seattle, WA -- from which 172 contestants were invited to attend the "Las Vegas Round."
During last night's conclusion of the pre-taped round, the Top 20 -- 10 males and 10 females -- were selected by regular So You Think You Can Dance judges Nigel Lythgoe and Mary Murphy, as well as choreographers/guest judges Debbie Allen, Mia Michaels, Adam Shankman, and Lil' C.
The Top 20 finalists will be paired into 10 couples and learn a choreographed dance routine from a variety of genres -- including hip-hop, Broadway, disco and ballroom, among others -- before performing during the two-hour performance episode. Home viewers will be able to vote for their favorite couples immediately following the broadcast.
The following night at 9PM ET/PT, So You Think You Can Dance will air its first live fifth-season results show -- in which 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 18.
In addition, Thursday night's broadcast will also feature Sean Kingston performing his new single "Fire Burning on the Dance Floor."
Once the Top 10 fifth-season finalists are selected, it will be solely up to home viewers to decide who remains in the competition.
- Randi Evans, a 23-year-old jazz dancer from Orem, UT who currently resides in Springville, UT
Evans began dancing at an early age and performed in the closing ceremonies at the 2002 Salt Lake City Winter Olympic Games. She currently attends Utah Valley University where she is majoring in elementary education.
- Karla Garcia, a 23-year-old jazz and contemporary dancer from Oxon Hill, MD who currently resides in Brooklyn, NY
Garcia is a graduate of New York University. Her early dance experience included learning traditional Filipino folk dancing. Garcia performed on Broadway in "Hot Feet," danced in the ensemble of the "Radio City Christmas Spectacular" and went on to tour with "Wicked."
- Caitlin Kinney, a 21-year-old contemporary dancer from Annapolis, MD
Kinney graduated from the Baltimore School for the Arts in 2005. She danced at North Carolina Dance Theatre as an apprentice for two years and is an experienced gymnast.
- Asuka Kondoh, a 25-year-old latin ballroom dancer from San Francisco, CA who currently resides in Irvine, CA
Kondoh loves swimming, golf and tennis and has played piano for 13 years. She is a graduate of University of California, Irvine, and has worked as a latin ballroom instructor for the last two years.
- Janette Manrara, a 25-year-old salsa dancer from Miami, FL who currently resides in Hialeah, FL
Manrara began performing in musical theater at age 12, and started her formal dance training at 19, studying ballroom, ballet, pointe, jazz and hip hop. She currently attends Florida State University.
- Jeanine Mason, an 18-year-old contemporary dancer from Miami, FL who currently resides in Pinecrest, FL
A recent graduate of the Ransom Everglades School, Mason plans to attend the University of California, Los Angeles in the fall. She began her dance training in ballet and lyrical and then went on to study jazz, acrobatics, hip hop, modern, and contemporary.
- Kayla Radomski, an 18-year-old jazz and contemporary dancer from Aurora, CO
Radomski has been dancing for most of her life, and participating in So You Think You Can Dance is one of her most rewarding experiences. She is grateful to her amazing mother who has supported her love of dance for so many years. Radomski also enjoys acting and singing.
- Melissa Sandvig, a 29-year-old ballet dancer from Los Alamitos, CA
Sandvig has been dancing for most of her life. She has danced with the Milwaukee Ballet Company, LA Opera, Long Beach Ballet and Helios Dance Theater. A highlight for Sandvig was performing "Le Coeur Illumine" at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion.
- Paris Torres, a 19-year-old contemporary dancer from Issaquah, WA
Torres is a graduate of Skyline High School. She began dancing when she was 6 years old and now teaches at a studio near her home. She was also a Miss Washington Teen pageant winner, and was a Seattle Storm and Seattle Sonic Jr. dancer from 2000-2003.
- Ashley Valerio, a 22-year-old contemporary dancer from Mesa, AZ who currently resides in North Hollywood, CA
Valerio has been dancing for most of her life. She is a graduate of Mountain View High School.
- Kupono Aweau, a 23-year-old lyrical and contemporary dancer from Honolulu, HI who currently resides in Kailua, HI
Aweau graduated from the Kamehameha Schools and has been dancing since he was 16 years old. He loves his home state of Hawaii, and is an avid collector of home furnishings.
- Tony Bellissimo, a 20-year-old hip hop dancer from Buffalo, NY
Bellissimo has been dancing for most of his life. He is a graduate of Frontier High School, and played on the school's soccer, football and lacrosse teams. He likes to write short stories and poems, and his favorite professional dancer is Barry Lather.
- Brandon Bryant, a 19-year-old contemporary dancer from Miami, FL who currently resides in Salt Lake City, UT
Bryant began dancing ballet at age 10. He is a graduate of Coral Reef Senior High School and now attends Miami Dade College. His most memorable dance experience was performing for Madonna at her daughterâ€™s birthday party.
- Phillip Chbeeb, a 20-year-old popping dancer from Houston, TX who currently resides in Los Angeles, CA
Chbeeb has had no formal dance training, but began dancing when he was 15 years old. At age 16, he founded the Marvelous Motion Studio in Houston. He is currently an engineering physics major at Loyola Marymount University.
- Jason Glover, a 21-year-old lyrical and contemporary dancer from Fresno, CA
Glover began dancing at age 12, studying Tap and Hip Hop. He is a graduate of Bullard High School, and his favorite dancer is Michael Jackson.
- Vitolio Jeune, a 26-year-old contemporary dancer from Petionville, Haiti who currently resides in Miami, FL
Jeune began dancing at age 18, and is a graduate of Florida's New World School of the Arts. He loves motorcycles, and his favorite dancer is Desmond Richardson.
- Max Kapitannikov, a 26-year-old latin ballroom dancer from Moscow, Russia who currently resides in Brooklyn, NY
Kapitannikov has been dancing for as long as he can remember. He comes from a dancing family, and his mother is a ballet teacher. He also enjoys sculpting and playing the guitar. He attended the Manhattan Comprehensive High School.
- Evan Kasprzak, a 21-year-old Broadway dancer from West Bloomfield, MI
Kasprzak graduated from Wylie E. Groves High School and currently attends Illinois Wesleyan University. He has been dancing since he was 6 years old, and his most memorable dance experience was performing in a Gregory Hines tribute with Hines' family in the audience.
- Ade Obayomi, a 20-year-old contemporary dancer from Chandler, AZ who currently resides in Orange County, CA
Obayomi has been dancing since he was 6 years old. He is a graduate of Corona Del Sol High School and currently attends Chapman University. A dance highlight for him was performing at Radio City Music Hall.
- Jonathan Platero, a 21-year-old salsa dancer from Sanford, FL who currently resides in New York, NY
Platero was a gymnast before he began dancing at age 16. He is a graduate of Seminole High School, was a World Salsa finalist in 2006-2007 and performed as a dancer and acrobat in High School Musical.