University of the Arts Ballet Senior D.J. Smart Performs Contemporary Solo on Fox TV's 'So You Think You Can Dance'

July 23, 2010

University of the Arts Ballet senior D.J. Smart (right and below) performed a stirring solo contemporary dance number with shackles on his wrists set to Kanye West's "Say You Will" on the July 22 episode of Fox TV's "So You Think You Can Dance."

Watch his performance.

By all accounts, the Detroit native, who performed the piece at his Las Vegas "SYTYCD" audition but didn't advance to the show's competition episodes, blew away the audience. Check out a rehearsal of the piece.

LA Times blogger Claire Zulkey called the number "gorgeous" and admired Smart's "sheer physicality" and "the way he repeatedly used only his legs to get up from a splits position, the point of his toes, the definition of his huge thigh muscles."

Baltimore Sun blogger Sarah Kelber called Smart "amazing" and wondered "why isn't he on the show as a contestant?"

A blog for the Houston Chronicle labeled the performance "eye-popping."

In December, 20-year-old University of the Arts student Russell Ferguson won the sixth season of "So You Think You Can Dance." In an episode filled with celebrity performances, the Roxbury, Mass., native, who suffered an injury in the previous night's performance, beat contemporary dancer Jakob Karr for the title. He won $250,000, will be part of a national dance tour and will star in a dance number on the upcoming Academy Awards telecast, among other prizes.


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