Wednesday we watched the new format of So You Think You Can Dance, with the eleven finalists performing with all-stars from past years instead of with each other. It seemed to work fine. It allows me now to concentrate on only the dancer competing, not necessarily both of them, although some of the lady all-stars make it difficult not to watch them. Both Kent Boyd and I were taken with the sultry moves of his partner, Anya Garnis. The lad from the tiny country community in Ohio had probably never before seen anything remotely like Anya. And the brilliance of Alex Wong's performance to "Hallelujah," choreographed by Sonya, made the evening successful. But there seems to be a trend this season that I'm not happy about. One of the producers apparently thinks that the sea anemone arms on American Idol should be emulated by their vocal equivalent, that is, the oh's and ah's from the audience during a performance. A genuine reaction to a dance move is one thing, but these sounds seem to have little to do with what’s going on during the dance. How intrusive, how unclassy, just as the waving arms is unclassy on Idol.
If Barbra were in concert, would the audience be encouraged to make these sounds during one of her numbers? I don’t think so. In fact, she’d probably skewer the offenders with a Streisand glare.