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“So You Think You Can Dance:” Top 8 Recap

August 3rd, 2011 by Rebecca Harper Editor

Honest critique (and real tears) from Lady Gaga, kind words from director Rob Marshall, and quick-witted banter from Emmy-nominated host Cat Deeley — not to mention some of the best dancing we’ve seen on TV: last week’s installment of “So You Think You Can Dance” had it all. It was a week where the judges followed America’s vote, sending home this season’s vixen, Jordan, and Broadway-ready dancer Jess, but no matter. We predict this season will come down to three dancers: Melanie, Marko, and Sasha. With six dancers left in the competition, we’ll have to wait to see which one earns top honors. In the meantime, here are the week’s best performances, including a fierce number featuring Melanie and Sasha, and the dance that famously brought Lady Gaga to tears.

1) Sasha & Melanie

Sasha and Melanie got the boot last week, but not in the way you might expect. At the end of their fierce (is there any other way to put it?) Sonya Tayeh “warrior princess” jazz routine, Lady Gaga presented the dancers with her seriously high platform boot. “All I know is that was that future,” she told them. The other judges were equally effusive. Safe to say, these girls are a lock-in to go the distance. But will this be the first time we see two females in the finals?

2) Marko with All-Star Allison

This is it, the dance that brought Lady Gaga to tears. Sonya Tayeh’s contemporary routine for Marko and his “SYTYCD” All-Star partner Allison was a tribute to moms — we even got a shout-out to Marko’s mom in the audience — and inspired a personal story from the pop superstar. It also got Marko pretty choked up, as well, as he apologized to his mom for being a “bit of a brat.”

3) Melanie with All-Star Neil

All you “SYTYCD” fans know choreographer Mandy Moore has a soft spot for ’80s ballads, and she didn’t disappoint with a contemporary routine set to the queen of all love songs, “Total Eclipse of the Heart.” And it delivered. First there was a shirtless Neil and Melanie’s “Dirty Dancing-“worthy leap into his arms. Heck, Lady Gaga was moved enough to offer Melanie a job on tour.

4) Sasha with All-Star Pasha

Jonathan Roberts crafted a quirky little quickstep for Sasha and her All-Star partner Pasha (who kept his shirt on this time around). High-pitched judge Mary Murphy called out Sasha’s stage presence and critiqued her stiff knees, but Nigel just came out and said it: Sasha’s his favorite this season — though he went back on his words when praising Melanie.

5) Bonus: The LXD

The LXD performed on the results show, giving the national TV audience a taste of street style. “We really wanted to show individual styles. That’s always a mission for The LXD: that street styles are as beautiful as your typical ballet,” the LXD’s Christopher Scott said. (He choreographed the routine with Galen Hooks.) “This one was very much an LXD ballet. Their story is more in the relationship that people have. It’s very subtle in the way that it represents society and where people belong, and where do you fit in. People get pulled into different molds … at the end, we all come together. Ultimately there shouldn’t be any rules.” Season 3 of “The LXD” premieres on Hulu August 11.

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