#SYTYCD Book Pitch: Season 10, Top 20 (@DANCEonFOX)


Last year I did a little feature on my blog where I took some of my favorite routines from the television show So You Think You Can Dance and pitched books based on them. This seems a bit random, but after I heard authors like Victoria Schwab and Myra McEntire talk about how SYTYCD affected their books, I realized how interconnected all art is, and how artists all tend to take inspiration from each other. Music, photographs, paintings, dance, poetry, film, books…they all come from the same creative spirit.

Also, I love, love, love this show, and this gave me an excuse to talk about it on my blog.

It all started with this post, which was so much fun to write and let me revisit many of my favorite routines from seasons past. It got a huge positive response, so I turned it into a weekly feature. Every week, I’d pick a dance and pitch a book inspired by it. I’d also pick an author whose voice and skills I thought suited that story, but I’m not going to do that this yearMostly because my author knowledge is finite, and I used many of my favorites last season, and besides, that’s really not the point of doing these posts.

Last year, I posted faithfully the day after the show (which airs Tuesdays at 8:00 EST). This year…I’m not going to do that. Because I’ve gotten so erratic in my posting, and because sometimes ideas need a few days to stew, I’ll just promise to put posts up sometime before the next show airs. Which, in the case of this week, is going to be mere hours before the next show airs.


Guys, I am super-psyched about this year’s Top 20. So very many good dancers! I haven’t been this excited since Season 7 (which I know many people didn’t like, but I luuuuuurved. Kent! Lauren! Billy! ROBERT!). I’ll get into my opinions on this year’s crop of dancers in a minute, for those of you who care. I’m guessing most of you just want me to get to the book pitch.

Which I will do in just a second.

First, I just need you to watch the opening number from the Top 20 performance show. It doesn’t tell a story, but it is in my top 3 SYTYCD group dances ever. The other two are Comanche (S6) and Ra (S7), if you’re interested. With an honorable mention going to Ramalama (S2).

…I’m getting sidetracked.



I’d apologize for all the caps I keep using, but you should know by now I just have lots of all-caps feelings about this show.

(For those of you who don’t watch the show and are confused by the random…more mature…participants in this dance, they’re the choreographers and judges.)

ANYWHO, BOOK PITCHES. (Disclaimer: It is highly possible in any given week that you will watch the dance, then read my pitch, and have no idea how the two are related. If so, I am sorry. I promise it works in my head, but my head is a strange, strange place.)

Here we go!

Song: Elsa by The Valerie Project

Choreographer: Sonya Tayeh

Dancers: Amy and Fik-Shun

Pitch: While awaiting her execution for the murder of the royal family — her family — a princess-turned-assassin escapes from prison, with the aid of a guard who believes she is innocent. With the kingdom’s armies in pursuit, they must help each other as they brave a vicious wilderness neither of them is prepared for. Meanwhile, the guard begins to question the princess’ innocence, and his own role in her story, as she is haunted by the memories of her dead family.

What do we think, friends? Are you picking up what I’m putting down? Does this dance give you something totally different? What other dances from last week inspired you?

And for those of you who care, I have many people I’m pulling for this season. For the guys, I’m a fan of Tucker*, Aaron**, and — although he was not impressive in last week’s show — Nico***.

For girls, Jasmine M, Makenzie, and Amy are my frontrunners. Amy astounds me.

I’m also watching the show with my two daughters (ages 7 and 4), and I told them they could each vote for one girl and one guy. They took this responsibility very seriously, making notes (or in my four-year-old’s case, drawings) of their favorite dances throughout the show, then making me rewind so they could watch the recaps at the end three times, before settling on their favorites.

Anyone want to guess which couple this is? Hint: Not the couple she voted for.

My seven-year-old’s favorites are Malece and Paul. The four-year-old voted for Jenna and Fik-Shun.

Between the three of us, we’re sure to pick some contenders.

If you’re watching and voting, who are your picks? Are you as excited for this season as I am? And if you’re in Nashville, WHO WANTS TO GO TO THE TOUR WITH ME? Because I’m already pretty sure this is a tour I’ll want to see.

P.S. I’m totally posting a book review tomorrow. I promise.

* Tucker is from Nashville — I think I might have driven by his house the other day. At any rate, they had a gigantic sign in their front yard cheering him on. Next time I drive by, I’ll take a picture.

** Who else is SO HAPPY that he squeaked into the show? Please, please let him get farther than the last time I liked a tapper this much and was so very disappointed by his early elimination. *Nick Young cough cough*

*** I’m hoping he redeems himself this week, because he absolutely stood out to me in the Meet the Top 20 show, especially in the Top 10 guys dance. But I’m prepared for him to be this year’s Dancing Gosling Matt Kazmierczak, who I loved and had a similar style (to my untrained eye), yet never really wowed the judges or the voters.

2 thoughts on “#SYTYCD Book Pitch: Season 10, Top 20 (@DANCEonFOX)

  1. I love this show too! More than once I became a bit teary-eyed during the auditions. I tend to watch reality shows as background noise, like The Voice which you can hear more than you need to watch. But SYTYCD you have to watch! I am always rewinding because I miss something. I love it when a dancer who is say good at hip hop then does ballet and nails it. Fik-shun or however he spells it, he is really impressive this season. How fun that you’ve got your kids in on it,.
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  2. i forgot about “Ra”! i had to look that one up. it was quite good. POOR ALEX SITTING IN A CHAIR WHEN HE SHOULD’VE BEEN DANCING.
    also, HOW DO PEOPLE NOT LIKE THAT SEASON. upon further reflection… she was never “my favorite” but lauren was so so so good. and i’m really happy for her that she won even though robert was technically my favorite. ahem…anyway…

    that dance with amy and fik-shun was so controlled! i felt like they were moving in slow motion almost because their motions were so like… yeah, controlled. i don’t know how else to say it. that’s really cute that rachel and clo both vote on their favorites too and take the decision very seriously 🙂

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