OK, I’m a big fan of the show So You Think You Can Dance. I felt lucky to attend some shows last season, and when I got an email for two shows this week, I jumped on it. I was nervous when I saw that the address was for the Orpheum and not the CBS lot, but when I got there it was clear that it was: Auditions. I didn’t want to go to fucking auditions. I want costumes and choreography and ensemble pieces.
In recent seasons, I haven’t even watched auditions. One in twenty people will be good, one in forty will be amazing, one in ten will be completely delusional. It’s the reality TV shock-jock portion, where people fall and cry and lie and the desperation seeps through and they edit to support the judge’s decisions. However, I had already parked downtown all day for six dollars, so I stayed.
It was kind of cool to be in the Orpheum and to see the familiar carpeting and to see a pile of dance bags and the warm up room. We were seated and introduced to the newest judge, Christina Applegate, who has been a dancer her whole life and who crossed the stage in gold heels so high she needed a handler to come down the steps to the judge’s dais.
Nigel Lythgoe went through a list of don’ts for the dancers. He listed out things the judges were tired of seeing.
1. Don’t extend an arm and reach out pleadingly to the judges, wild-eyed.
2. Don’t jeté , tumble, then leap into the air to jeté again. OVER IT.
3. Don’t look at the floor. (This is also a good tip for comedy!)
4. Don’t wink.
5. Don’t put your finger on your mouth.
6. Don’t blow a kiss.
7. Don’t lip-sync.
8. Don’t hold your leg up. This is So You Think You Can Dance, not Do You Think You Can Hold Your Leg Up For An Assload Of Time.
I stayed for the day and saw all 114 dancers although it felt like a billion. I now have my own list. It’s kind of inside baseball, but what in life isn’t?
List of Most Of The Dancer Types from So You Think You Can Dance Auditions:
1. Mama’s pretty pretty princess, the best ballerina in Pig’s Snout, Arkansas. This represents 20% of the attendees. Wearing a sports bra and leggings. Has long, pretty girl hair. She will do one million pirouettes and lift her leg up by her head and will get yelled at because all the other pretty princesses have done the same thing.
2. Mama’s pretty pretty princess got a mohawk and earrings and is all edgy and shit. She will do a ton of pirouettes and lift her leg up in the air.
3. Mama’s pretty pretty princess (male). Appears to have a sixteen-pack of abs. I don’t even know if this possible.
4. Breakdancer type one: Learned on the streets. Looks to have been homeless as recently as this morning. Amazing dancer. Doesn’t appear to hear or understand instructions but can pop and lock like a sonofabitch.
5. Breakdancer type two: Learned at boarding school. May dress like Parappa the Rapper. May have a rat-tail. (Rat tail odds doubled if Asian)
6. Ballroom dancers who have spray-tanned their legs to match their shoes, which is awesome.
7. Girl with a big bottom and men’s shoes? Lindy hopper.
8. Tap dancers, who never get through even though some of them are awesome. The sound and size of this show are never great for tap.
9. Hot-Ass Male Russian Ballroom Dancer. (Thank god.) (Please take your shirt off.)
10. Asian Twerk Twink. Wears harem pants.
11. Midwestern Sincere Contemporary Dancer (male)- Wears what looks like pajamas and his one black Lucky Spinning Sock, which is black. He’s the best modern dancer in Pig’s Snout, Arkansas, but he’s not as good as Contemporary Eric. Why not wear a light colored sock? You look like a rube, Trent!
12. Elderly street dancer- He’s here to do all of Michael Jackson’s moves! You can see him tomorrow in front of the Hollywood Boulevard wax museum.
13. The Only Gay In The Village: A chubby small-town club dancer with a lotta heart and board shorts and a couple of awesome moves. He is trying not to lip-sync. My god, he tries. But that’s not a reasonable ask for a gay club dancer. He would have to put duct tape over his mouth, or put a Lucky Spinning Sock in it.
Good luck to these and all the dancers that auditioned, I look forward in seeing you on the show in a paint-covered t-shirt or a Victorian zombie outfit!