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So You Think You Can Dance Tackles Phobias

By November 5, 2009

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The hit reality series "So You Think You Can Dance," airing on Fox, has a long-standing tradition of dealing with painful topics through dance. For example, season 5 brought an extremely well-received routine by Mia Michaels expressing the pain and heartache of addiction, and choreographer Tyce Diorio's very personal breast cancer dance, dedicated to a friend who was struggling with the disease.

Now in Season 6, the show continues to bring personal struggles into the limelight. On Tuesday, choreographer Stacey Tookey took on phobias in a routine that is almost certain to become a legend. B-boy Jonathan "Legacy" Perez showed amazing strength and power as the phobia, while contemporary dancer Kathryn McCormick brought honesty to her struggle and, in the end, was able to conquer the fear.

I was highly impressed with the entire number, from the choice of song ("2 Steps Away" by Patti LaBelle) to the choreography, which involved an elaborate back and forth as the pair struggled to gain control, to the dancers who brought the fight to life. Although obviously a choreographed routine rather than a genuine personal reaction, I found the dance a welcome relief after the debacle that was last week's Amazing Race.

Did you see the routine? If you suffer from phobias, did you feel that your battle was accurately portrayed? How do you feel about phobias being the topic of a reality show dance routine, and do you believe that this exposure will help raise the sensitivity level of the general public? Your thoughts are welcome!

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