New Music Monday: Torn – Nathan Lanier

Another great instrumental track (see “Let It Go / Winter” mash-up from last month if you want another instrumental), here is “Torn” by Nathan Lanier.  It’s very “epic soundtrack-y” – I’m using it this year for a modern class who requested a dance where half could be good and half could be evil.  It seems to be suiting them well.

I believe it was used on SYTYCD a few seasons back, but haven’t seen it hit the competition circuit too hard yet, so I figured I’d share!

The Dance Buzz is an iTunes affiliate.

SYTYCD Season 9: Best Music (So Far)

Audition from Season 9, Episode 2

Dance recital’s over, summer classes haven’t started yet.. so that means its So You Think You Can Dance season!  Yippee!

Aside from the dancing, my favorite part is the fantastic music finds that come out of each episode.  The only downside is you can expect to hear some of these songs getting overplayed on the competition circuit next year.  But for summer, who cares?  They are deliciously good and I love the variety of genres.

Here are my favorites so far.  I know there’s only been three episodes, but can you believe that between the three episodes there’s been over 100 songs?  Some are great to dance to, but others are just fun to listen to in the car and at home!

Hot Artists so far:  PP Music (UK), James Dooley and District 78 already seem really popular choice, and have been used in all three episodes.

Great Songs To Dance To (links open in iTunes)

Candyland – CocoRosie: Just enough creepiness mixed in with a lovely melody to make something unique and interesting

Guardians At the Gate – Audiomachine:  There seems to be a lot of “cinematic” or soundtrack music this year.  Its very powerful music and I love this particular piece.  It’s also nice for a solo as its only 2 minutes and 12 seconds long.  For a less intense instrumental, check out Moving Cities by Faze Action

Invaderz – Excision & Datsik:  Such a cool electronic song, full of sound effects that are just begging to be danced to.

Mouvement Introductif – Yann Tiersen:  A beautiful classical piece of music.

It’s Good to See You Again – Scott Alan:  I might just love this song because I loved the audition that went along with it.  It was a very touching moment in the show, and it totally got me tearing up.

Non je ne regrette rien – Edith Piaf:  Another great audition – I loved this choice of music as well. Bonus points if you can name a movie this song is used in!

Here’s the video of that last song’s audition:

Great Songs Just To Listen To

So High – LA-EX

Heavy Cross – Gossip

D-D Dance – The Concept

The Only Place – Best Coast

Looking for another song you heard on SYTYCD, but don’t see it here?  

Check out some of these sites – they are the most comprehensive places I’ve found to look for the SYTYCD music:


Your Daily Dance

and of course: FOX SYTYCD Official site

Theme Playlist: "Circus"

Fill your show with death-defying dances inspired by the big top!  This post was inspired by the SYTYCD routine by Tyce Diorio “The Circus Sets Up” (music from Water for Elephants soundtrack)

Welcome To The Big Top!
Charmed I’m Sure – Circus Contraption Charmed, I'm Sure - Grand American Traveling Dime Museum – very dark and scary – definitely for mature dancers
At The Circus – Dance A Story – Richard Maddock Dance-a-Story
Happy Boys and Happy Girls – Aqua Happy Boys and Girls - Aquarium– a cute young jazz or hip hop
Glitter In The Air – Pink Glitter In the Air - Funhouse (Deluxe Version)– slower lyrical song

Animals & Performers
Animal Crackers – my favorite version is Joanie Bartels Animal Crackers In My Soup - Sillytime Magic
Talk To The Animals – The Broadway Kids Buy From Amazon

Lion Tamer – Sylvia – Prelude: The Huntress Sylvia, Ballet Suite: I. Prelude: The Huntresses - Delibes: The Best of French Ballet
Ponies – any sort of prancing ballet music

Treats Under The Big Top
Popcorn – Crazy Frog Popcorn - Crazy Hits
Cotton Candy – Melany Cotton Candy - Kidstuff By Melany– great for Kindegarten age
Circus – Britney SpearsCircus - Circus (Deluxe Version)

Clowning Around
Make ‘Em Laugh Make 'Em Laugh - Singin' In the Rain (Soundtrack from the Motion Picture)
Send In The ClownsSend In the Clowns - The Very Best of Judy Collins
Tears of a ClownTears of a Clown - All Time Greatest Hits
Rodeo Clowns – Jack Johnson Rodeo Clowns - On and On – a nice soft-shoe style tap song

Death-Defying Feats!
Tightrope – Janelle Monae Tightrope - Friends With Benefits (Original Soundtrack)– upbeat jazz or tap
Tightrope or Acrobats – Into The Spin – Dessa Into the Spin - A Badly Broken Code – the strings remind me of a tightrope
Acrobats – Tea Party – Kerli –Tea Party - Almost Alice (Music Inspired By the Motion Picture) great jazz or acro number
Sword Swallowers – Steel Dreams – Cirque du Soleil Steel Dream - Quidam (Soundtrack)

Follow Friday on Twitter: Dance Organizations

If you don’t use Twitter, you don’t know what you’re missing! Twitter can be an overwhelming onslaught of mini-messages, but it can also be very useful to a dancer looking for audition updates or an inside look at being a professional dancer.

This Follow Friday, we are taking a look at some dance organizations that have been all a-buzz…here are a few of our favorites:

@NationalDance: National Dance Institute (NDI), a nonprofit, has impacted the lives of more than 2 million public school children through award-winning arts education programs.

@JacobsPillow: Nat’l Historic Landmark & home of America’s longest-running int’l dance festival. Visit the link above to sign up for the Pillow’s eclub for artist & event info

@NYCDA: NYC Dance Alliance continues to inspire and nurture the next generation of pro dancers.

@DanceUK: Dance UK is the national voice of dance.

@DizzyFeetTweet: Dizzy Feet Foundation was founded in 2009 by Nigel Lythgoe, director Adam Shankman, DWTS judge Carrie Ann Inaba and actress Katie Holmes, among others.

@chicagotap: Building community with rhythm

@DanceNYC: Everything Dance in New York

@DanceU101: THE source for info & advice about college dance programs: career advice, admissions tips, videos, discussion forums and much more!

@YoungArts: The signature national organization that recognizes and supports America’s most talented 17-18 year olds in the visual, literary and performing arts.

And of course, you can find all of our buzz on our Twitter page:

Follow Friday on Twitter: SYTYCDancers

In honor of SYTYCD Season 7 coming to its end, here are our favorite SYTYCD Twitter-ers! Per the rules, contestants can’t tweet while they are still competing on the show, but the all stars and anyone who’s been eliminated can keep in touch.

Its especially fun to see behind-the-scenes pics of the dancers, like this post from Ade.

ADEEVERYDAY: @mmraw (mia michaels) so fun being a part if something way bigger than just this routine. We love you mama mia

Hands down, my favorite from Season 7 was Alex Wong.. before he got injured and kicked off the show 😦 But he is such a goofball – love reading his tweets… like this one from a few weeks ago:

alexdwong: Will my dreams of being on Glee be shattered if I look like this after rehab? Haha 😀

Here’s where you can find your favorite SYTYCDancers Twitter-ers 🙂

Season 7 Contestants
SYTYCD7 – for contestants still on the show
Billy Bell
Alex Wong
Jose Ruiz
Alexie Agdeppa
Melinda Sully
Does anyone know Lauren’s twitter account?

Kathyn McCormick
Lauren Gottlieb
Ade Obayomi
Allison Holker
Courtney Galiano
Neil Haskell
Comfort Fedoke

And of course, you can find all of our buzz on our Twitter page:

Check out last Follow Friday’s post: Bloggers & Magazines on Twitter

Choreographer’s Roots: Dee Caspary

In our Choreographer’s Roots feature, we take a quick look back at where they started to help understand where they are today. We’ve been on a SYTYCD kick lately, so today we’ll look at Dee Caspary as they are affectionately known.
See other Choreographer’s Roots posts here

Mark this past week’s pillow dance (anyone have a link??) as another one of my favorites from this season.

So before he was choreographing on SYTYCD where was he? We’ll take a chronological look at Dee Caspary’s accolades:

> Danced in Paula Abdul’s videos at age 16
> Toured with New Kids on the Block and Tiffany
> Began choreographing with EDGE and toured with West Coast Dance Explosion, Los Angeles Dance Force and LA Underground, winning many choreographic awards
> Guest teacher/choreographer at Broadway Dance Center
> Currently works with Shake the Floor, Pacific Coast Dance Fest, Jump, Edge Performing Arts
> Opened his own company, IV Dance Company, in LA

Sources: IMDB, Break The Floor, Broadway Dance Center

New Music Mondays: SYTYCD

Because I only have until Thursday to be obsessed about this season of So You Think You Can Dance, this week’s New Music Monday is all about the music featured on the show.

if you’re looking for an original song you won’t hear anywhere else, SYTYCD pretty much guarantees you won’t find that. You can safely bet that a song used on SYTYCD will be overused on the competition circuit this upcoming season. BUT it is a great place to find new artists!

The other option is to use a song that isn’t used in a dance, but is used during a montage or other part of the show. SYTYCD seems to unearth good songs by little-known artists.

How To Find Your Song
So – you’re looking for a song and didn’t catch the split-second subtitle or you missed this week’s episode. What to do? Go to the Fox website? Not much help. If only there was someone who tirelessly reviews each episode and posts a comprehensive list each week… Enter PureSYTYCD!

This blog, which is all about SYTYCD all the time, had a great list of music posted after each episode. If the song is available on iTunes, she even posts the link directly to the iTunes store!

You are our SYTYCD music savior! Thank you!

Our Favorites From Season 7
Here are our favorite new artists we discovered this season thanks to SYTYCD:
Florence + The Machine (basically the whole album “Lungs”) Lungs
Lissie (“Everywhere I Go”)Lissie
Black Gold (“Shine”)Shine
Christina Perri (“Jar of Hearts”)Jar
Janelle Monae (“Tightrope”)Janelle

More New Music Monday posts

Choreographer’s Roots: Napoleon & Tabitha D’umo

In our Choreographer’s Roots feature, we take a quick look back at where they started to help understand where they are today. We’ve been on a SYTYCD kick lately, so today we’ll look at Napoleon and Tabitha, or “NappyTabs” as they are affectionately known.
See other Choreographer’s Roots posts here

The husband and wife team are often credited with developing the style of hip hop dance known as “lyrical hip hop”, but they started with humble beginnings until their paths met!

> Grew up in California where he learned breaking, locking & popping
> Joined the military and was stationed in Germany for a while
> Attended the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, studying dance (including jazz & modern) and molecular biology!

> Grew up in New Jersey
> Took jazz classes and was a cheerleader, but loved watching hip hop videos
> Attended the University of Nevada for communications, where she met Napoleon

> Began teaching hip hop classes together at the Las Vegas Athletic club
> Joined the dance company “Culture Shock” (future members of Jabbawockeez) and danced, choreographed and eventually became Artistic Directors
> Married in 1998 and moved to Los Angeles and started teaching at The Edge Performing Arts Center (where they still teach today!)
> Worked as back-up dancers for Beyonce, Missy Elliot, Toni Braxton, Timbaland and more
> Choreographed for NBA and NFL dance & cheer teams
> Joined Monsters of Hip Hop and teach master classes
> Assistant Directed Christina Aguelera’s and Ricky Martin’s tours
> Tabitha created a fitness DVD “Drop it with Dance”
> They have been supervising choreographers for ABDC and have choreographed for SYTYCD, where their choreography “Bleeding Love” was nominated for an Emmy

Now they have started their own clothing line (NappyTabs) for hip hop dancers, started working with Circque du Soleil, and Dancing with the Stars and continue to expand their brand.

Sources: Dance Plug, Wikipedia, Twitter,

Choreographer’s Roots: Stacey Tookey

In our Choreographer’s Roots feature, we take a quick look back at where they started to help understand where they are today. After watching SYTYCD tonight, we thought we’d start with one of our favorite choreographers – Stacey Tookey.

Stacey Tookey performed as…

…a member of Mia Michaels’ company
…a member of R.A.W. Dance Company (Mia Michaels)
…part of Parsons Dance Project
…cast member in Celine’s Vegas show
…Ballet British Columbia
…Fusion Dance Company
…NBA’s Grizzlies Extreme Dance Team

View her full biography here