Pro dancers Artem Chigvintsev and Sharna Burgess weren’t welcome on “Dancing with the Stars” this season, but “So You Think You Can Dance” invited them over to choreograph a routine for “Top 4 Perform” night. However, did they end up dooming their dancers with a challenging quickstep, or did Gino Cosculluela and Mariah Russell end up rising to the challenge? Scroll down to watch their performance below.
We don’t see a lot of quicksteps on “SYTYCD” these days. The style is so difficult to master that contestants who attempted it were seldom able to put their best foot forward — literally and figuratively. So it was a vote of confidence in Cosculluela and Russell that the show tasked them with this difficult dance on the night when each of them also had to perform four other times. But it was still a risk. After all, Cosculluela and Russell are both contemporary specialists, not ballroom dancers, and on top of that they were dancing with each other for the first time and not with their usual partners Sophie Pittman and Bailey Munoz.
The results were … mixed to positive. The judges weren’t over the moon about the performance, but they were quick to praise the dancers’ tenacity in the face of such an unforgiving routine. Ballroom expert Mary Murphy said they did a “respectable” job tackling choreography that it would take more experienced dancers years to master. Laurieann Gibson loved their chemistry. And Nigel Lythgoe told them it wasn’t the dancers’ downfall as it has been in the past.
You could say those judges’ critiques were a whole lot of damning with faint praise, but I think their admiration was genuine: Cosculluela and Russell climbed that mountain and lived to tell the tale. And perhaps their perseverance will help one of them win the title of America’s favorite dancer. What did you think of their quickstep? Would you like to see the style more often, or should the show leave it off the menu for good?
— SYTYCD (@DANCEonFOX) September 10, 2019
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