There was a rare opportunity last night (and for the next couple weeks) to see a side of art not normally broadcast to the American public. While we get our fill of accessible music and dance (American Idol, Dancing with the Stars) we rarely get to see the hoity-toity side of art. The people that parse the top 2-3% of the form and use terms not in the public lexicon. It’s like going to the Art Building at the State Fair, “Why did this one win, why is this better?” That top part of art is above the heads of most of us (I lived in the music part of that world at Eastman) and is almost never available for public consumption on TV.
But last night was the first episode of So You Think You Can Dance, season 7 and I have to admit I was impressed, entranced and inspired. While any of us can tell which celebrity does better on DWTS, this dancing was on the very edge of the art form. The show works because it doesn’t coddle to the masses. Sometimes there are up to 6 judges, all nationally known choreographers who see things in these performers, that personally I didn’t or couldn’t. While I’ve judged my fair share of dancing at the MN State Fair Talent contest, this was a whole ‘nother enchilada.
At one point one of the judges commented to a lithe 18-year-old that she was the kind of talent that only comes around once in one hundred years. (But no pressure) I thought she was good, but didn’t she in here what that judge did as far as century special talent. That’s what I liked about the show.