So You Think You Can Dance: Previewing the Top 20 Performance Show

Well, here we go again. Another season, another batch of twenty dancers, another set of possibly memorable routines, and another one of these articles. You know, the one where we take a look at what could possibly happen in tonight's So You Think You Can Dance performance show? Thanks, again, to the folks at SYTYCDism, who always get these things for reasons I myself cannot comprehend. But anyway.

This week's performance show comes in pretty odd circumstances: since the World Series is now on, we won't have results shows for the next two weeks, and we don't get to vote for those next two weeks. The judges will choose four dancers who will dance for their lives immediately after the performances are over, and then they'll choose two to send home.

Now, I'm not sure I've got my eye on certain dancers more than others yet, so all my thoughts here are on the basis of their styles and the genre they're performing tonight. Ready, kids?

Ariana DeBose and Peter Sabasino: Hip hop (Tabitha and Napoleon)

It's a Nappy Tabs routine, so surely there'll be some adaptations, and personally, I don't really feel much for this, partly because Peter's going to be locked in a box like the other tappers.

Ashleigh Di Lello and Jakob Karr: Broadway (Tyce Diorio)

Oh no, Broadway. I don't really hate it, but I thought I had enough last season. Anyway, Ashleigh's a bit of a weak link here, I feel.

Bianca Revels and Victor Smalley: Contemporary (Travis Wall)

Travis is choreographing this season, hooray! Now I wonder how this'll turn out. I can't see Bianca slowing down and going avant-garde on all of us. But I'm crossing my fingers this works nicely.

Channing Cooke and Phillip Attmore: Jive

Could work for Phillip, and I have a feeling it'll work for Channing, too. She's always had that vibe in me that goes, "I can be fun!" No word on who's the choreographer yet, so maybe it's someone new.

Ellenore Scott and Ryan Di Lello: Jazz (Sonya Tayeh)

Fingers crossed this isn't like last night's routine, which I found a bit disappointing. Advantage: Ellenore's worked with Sonya for last night's routine, and Ryan seems more than able to keep up with this.

Karen Hauer and Kevin Hunte: Cha cha

I wonder if Kevin can pull off cha cha. Slightly similar, but still. No idea on who's choreographing this, either.

Kathryn McCormick and Legacy Perez: Hip hop (Dave Scott)

Legacy's gonna carry this one home, definitely. Kathryn's another one of those dancers I've yet to warm to, so I can't really tell.

Mollee Gray and Nathan Trasoras: Disco (Doriana Sanchez)

We all know Nathan kicks ass. Mollee, well, I'm not yet as convinced. I smell a pretty straightforward routine here, but last season's disco performances have been crazy, so expect a stray.

Noelle Marsh and Russell Ferguson: Foxtrot (Tony Meredith/Melanie LaPatin)

I've heard that Noelle suffered a knee injury during rehearsals--ouch!--so Melanie is standing in for her this week. No word on whether she'll be able to dance again, but an injury this early doesn't really sound good. Not on the first week.

Pauline Mata and Brandon Dumlao: Smooth waltz

This should've been Billy, but we all know he had to go home. I feel bad for Brandon all of a sudden. He got air time in the auditions, sure, but not enough air time. Luckily, his fate doesn't lie on our hands just yet. But he's a hip-hop dancer. Can Pauline save him? Come on, deep connections, work! No word on who's choreographing this one.

And then, the usual disclaimers: details might change, and my opinions definitely will, too. So, kids, shall we?

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