This week, Season 15 of So You Think You Can Dance came to an end. But before America’s Favorite Dancer was officially announced, we got to see some of the season’s best performances including a fun group performance with all of the Top 10 dancers. Even though it’s almost fall, this performance, choreographed by Mandy Moore (who just won an Emmy for her work on SYTYCD) gave us some major summer break vibes. After the Macy’s-inspired fun was over, it was time to celebrate all of the incredible dancing Season 15 had to offer.
The Judge’s Picks
The judges got to relive their favorite performances from the season. Each judge picked performances that showed the contestants’ best moves and everyone’s favorite choreography.
First to pick her favorite was Vanessa who chose Jensen and Jay Jay’s Tahitian dance duet choreographed by Tiana Nonosina Liufau. There were as many quick hip movements and maybe even more energy than the first time they took the stage with this performance. Her next favorite performance? Brian Friedman’s heels routine choreographed for Hannahlei and Jensen. Just like the first time, these girls rocked the heels and the stage in this fast and fierce routine.
Cole and Hannahlei got to bring their fiery cha cha from earlier in the season back for Mary’s favorite performance. Choreographed by Sasha Farber and Emma Slater, this performance brought the judges to their feet the first time, and it was just as impressive this week. The next performance Mary brought back was Travis Wall’s violin masterpiece danced by Magda and Darius. If it’s possible, this performance was even better this time around!
Nigel surprised us with a new performance featuring Evan Benedetto and Lex Ishimoto. Nigel felt like Evan went home too early for us to see his tap potential, so he paired him up with Lex for an incredible tap duet choreographed by Anthony Morigerato. Cat had chills and all the judges were on their feet after this performance. The next performance Nigel sent on stage was a performance we saw earlier in the season. Jay Jay and his All Star partner Lauren took the stage for an encore of the jazz performance choreographed by Mandy Moore. The final performance he sent on stage was a “remarkable parable,” Travis Wall’s powerful piece about acceptance performed by Darius and All Star Taylor. It’s hard not to get caught up in the strength of the piece, it’s no wonder Nigel wanted to see it again.
tWitch brought Magda and Darius back for his first favorite performance. Their smooth jazz piece from earlier in the season was a crowd favorite (and a Mandy Moore masterpiece). It’s no wonder tWitch wanted to bring those smooth moves back for the finale. Ray Leeper choreographed tWitch’s second pick, Genessy and Slavik’s “Housework” routine. This was a celebration of Slavik’s growth as much as the partnership with Genessy that helped him to the Top 4.
The Top 4 Picks
The judges weren’t the only ones picking favorites this week. The Top 4 also got to pick their favorite routines to perform from all of their work this season.
Genessy decided to revisit her duet with last season’s winner Lex Ishimoto. Choreographed by Mandy Korpinen and Elizabeth Petrin, Genessy wanted to bring the performance that she calls her “break-through moment” back to the stage.
Slavik went all the way back to his first live performance from this season. Choreographed by Luther Brown, this hip hop performance with Genessy was as smooth and fun as the original performance that made us all fall in love with this perfect partnership.
After receiving a “huge yes” from the judges during auditions, Jensen has made her way through this season with incredible performances that have brought her to the Top 4. For her favorite performance, she chose her hip hop routine in the kitchen with Jay Jay choreographed by Randi and Hef. Their pan-throwing skills were even better than the last time. This time, though, they pulled Mandy Moore’s Emmy out of the oven.
Last to pick her favorite performance was Hannahlei. Remembering a routine that felt more like living than dancing, she chose her All Star duet with Marko. This emotional contemporary piece choreographed by Robert Roldan was a gorgeous reminder of everything Hannahlei has done this season.
It wouldn’t be a celebration of the whole season if they didn’t revisit the group performances. Some of our favorite group performances from the season were brought back on stage – and shaken up a bit.
The first group performance brought back was the Top 3 Girls in the fem-bot routine choreographed by Luther Brown. They twisted this performance for the finale by bringing in two more bots – Magda and Chelsea!
The next group performance to return to the stage was the Top 4 guys in another Luther Brown routine. The surprise in this routine? No, it wasn’t a fifth dancer to bring the Top 4 up to the Top 5. It was two more dancers to make this a routine to remember! tWitch and Nigel joined Darius, Jay Jay, Cole, and Slavik in their yellow coats for this one.
Yet another Luther Brown piece marked the last group performance of the season. The Top 9 went to a twisted Candyland-like world for this performance that featured a little bit of all of their styles.
When the Top 4 joined Cat on stage for the first results, Slavik was named the fourth place dancer this season. Since coming to SYTYCD, Slavik has shown us his personality and his growth as he worked through all of the different styles that were put before him. Narrowed down to the Top 3 girls, the dancer in third place was Genessy. Her journey on the show was one to watch as she grew as a dancer and a person. That left only Jensen and Hannahlei on stage when it was time for the final results. The announcement led to one big Top 10 group hug. Hannahlei is America’s Favorite Dancer!