Summer is notoriously not a great time for television. Most of the biggest shows wrapped their seasons in April and May and won’t return until the fall. Are you destined to re-watch The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt until October? That wouldn’t be the worst option (I LOVE Kimmy), but there are still shows to follow week to week. One of my favorites? So You Think You Can Dance. The original dancing reality competition show just premiered season 12, and it’s perfect while Dancing With the Stars is on hiatus. In fact, it’s better. These unknown dancers are the most talented in the country, looking for their big break. Still not convinced? Check out these reasons to set the DVR on Mondays at 8.
1. The dancers go on to do big things.
After appearing on the show, these guys and gals launch their career. Witney Carson, Alison Hoker, Lacey Schwimmer, Chelsie Hightower, and more of the professional dancers on Dancing With the Stars got their start on SYTYCD. Evan Kasprzak, Thayne Jasperson, Jess LeProtto, and Alex Wong have all appeared on Broadway in shows like Newsies and On The Town. You can catch Twitch in Magic Mike XXL this summer, or maybe you recognize him from Step Up films. Other alum have become dancers for stars like Lady Gaga and Madonna. My point? These kids have talent with a capital T.
2. It’s perfect for watching at the gym or while working out.
These dancers are flexible, fit, and having fun! What better to watch while running on the treadmill or doing some standing ab exercises? The fun music will keep you on pace, and you’ll be so entertained that your workout will be over before you know it.
3. All the feels.
Dancing expresses every kind of emotion, so it’s not rare to go from a feel good, high energy routine to the judges sobbing. Some of the best routines in SYTYCD history are tear-jerkers. Just check out Neil and Lacey’s contemporary from season 3, about a woman’s reunion with her father in heaven. Gets me every time.
4. Season 12 has a twist.
Season 12 of So You Think You Can Dance has a “Stage vs. Street” theme, splitting the Top 20 into two groups of 10 dancers. “Team Stage” is your more traditional dance styles that are taught in a more formal setting: ballet, jazz, contemporary, ballroom, tap, etc. “Team Street” is for more recent dance styles that are typically self-taught: hip-hop, krump, breakdancing, popping, etc. Adding a team element is totally new for the show, so it should be interesting to see if it works.
5. It covers every style of dance.
Ballroom, Bollywood, Broadway, tap, contemporary, ballet, hip-hop, breakdancing, popping…this show has everything. This season might be Stage vs. Street, but a well-rounded dancer finds they can sell anything. Case in point? Ballet dancer Alex Wong slaying a hip hop routine with all star Twitch.
6. You’ll get ideas for your next dance routine.
Tons of colleges have team dance competitions. You’re going to need some inspiration for costumes, themes, and moves, and this is the best place to get it.
7. Host Cat Deeley is beyond adorable.
The space between routines is supposed to be the boring part of the show, but not with Cat Deeley. Between her killer wardrobe and cute accent, you won’t be able to get enough.