June 10, 2010 01:00 PM by Nancy Floyd
So You Think You Can Dance threw viewers for a loop last night when they announced the top 11 dancers, instead of a top 10. The six guys and five girls to make the competition were shocked and are gearing up to take the stage for the first time tonight. Keep reading for more details about season 7′s top 11 dancers competing for the title of America’s Favorite Dancer…
Season 7 ofÂ So You Think You Can Dance was already proving to be vastly different from previous seasons, but the judges threw viewers another surprise on last night’s episode. Instead of announcing the top 10 competitors, the judges decided to put 11 dancers through to the competition. In seasons past, the show has had 20 competitors, but producers decided season 7 would only have 10 dancers who would be paired with returning all-stars every week. Unable to narrow it down to just 10,Â So You Think You Can Dance decided to give 11 aspiring dancers a shot at the competition.
The top 11 dancers are (as pictured)…Top row L-R:Â Lauren Froderman, Jose Ruiz, Adechike Torbert, Melinda Sullivan, Alex Wong, Kent Boyd and Alexie Agdeppa. Bottom row L-R: Billy Bell, Cristina Santana, Robert Roldan and Ashley Galvan. Here’s a little more info about each of the top 11 dancers.
Lauren Froderman is an 18-year old contemporary dancer from Phoenix. “I’m more of a flowy-type dancer. I’m like an evolution of old-school lyrical,” she says.
Jose Ruiz is a 21-year old breakdancer from Miami. Â ”I’m humble, but I’m very confident. I’m smooth, but very explosive. That’s like my dance style,” he says.
Adechike Torbert is a 23-year old contemporary dancer from New York.Â ”I’m a pretty good jumper. I feel like theÂ Michael JordanÂ of dance,” Adechike says.
Melinda Sullivan is a 22-year old tap dancer from California. “I’m an artist. I love all forms of art. I’m an actress, singer, I dance, I’m a musician; I want to be a Renaissance woman,” she says.
Alex Wong is a 23-year old ballet dancer from Miami who almost made it into season 5 ofÂ So You Think You Can Dance. He says,Â “Not getting in Season 5 and being so close really crushed me. I had to give up my position at the Miami City Ballet to do this. It was difficult to give it up when I don’t know what’s going to happen. It’s a leap of faith.”
Kent Boyd is an 18-year old contemporary dancer from a small Ohio town. He says,Â “When I was young, my mom didn’t want me around the house, so she put me in dance. I do have passion for it now, but when I was younger, my mom was like, ‘Kent, you’ve got to get out of here!’”
Alexie Agdeppa is a 26-year old jazz dancer from California. “I started dancing at home very young. I was in front of the TV and watching one ofÂ Madonna’s concerts….so my mom put me in dance classes and from then on, I loved it,” she says.
Billy Bell is a 20-year old contemporary dancer from Palm Beach. He made the top 20 in season 6 but had to drop out due to an illness.Â “In a way there’s that extra sense of pressure. [Getting sick] really showed me how much I should appreciate the experience because you never know how quickly and suddenly it can be taken away from you,” he says.
Cristina Santana is a 24-year old salsa dancer from San Diego.Â ”I like to incorporate belly dance into the salsa, with my upper body moving. I love to mix things. I think you can mix any dance style and it’s crazy,” she says.
Robert Roldan is a 19-year old contemporary dancer from Hollywood.Â ”As a male dancer, growing up in that industry is very hard because you have friends that don’t do that. Once you find a passion for it, people look at you differently and stereotype it,” he says.
Ashley Galvan is an 18-year old contemporary dancer from California. Ashley says,Â ”I started dancing at the age of 3….I was the flower girl at a wedding, and at the reception I took her moves and put them on the dance floor, which isn’t good for a 3-year-old, so my parents put me in proper dance classes.”