Meet The So You Think You Can Dance Top 20, Season 5

Bios of the So You Think You Can Dance Top 20 – Straight from the FOX Press release…

Randi Evans – Dance Specialty: Jazz – Hometown: Orem, UT – Currently Resides: Springville, UT – Age: 23 – Evans began dancing at an early age and performed in the closing ceremonies at the 2002 Salt Lake City Winter Olympic Games. She currently attends Utah Valley University where she is majoring in elementary education.

Find Out Which Motown Hits Get the ...
Find Out Which Motown Hits Get the Cast Dancing in the Street!

Karla Garcia – Dance Specialty: Jazz/Contemporary – Hometown: Oxon Hill, MD – Currently Resides: Brooklyn, NY – Age: 23 – Garcia is a graduate of New York University. Her early dance experience included learning traditional Filipino folk dancing. Garcia performed on Broadway in …Hot Feet, danced in the ensemble of the …Radio City Christmas Spectacular and went on to tour with …Wicked.

Caitlin Kinney – Dance Specialty: Contemporary – Hometown: Annapolis, MD – Currently Resides: Annapolis, MD – Age: 21 – Kinney graduated from the Baltimore School for the Arts in 2005. She danced at North Carolina Dance Theatre as an apprentice for two years and is an experienced gymnast. – Audition

Asuka Kondoh – Dance Specialty: Latin Ballroom – Hometown: San Francisco, CA – Currently Resides: Irvine, CA – Age: 25 – Kondoh loves swimming, golf and tennis and has played piano for 13 years. She is a graduate of University of California, Irvine, and has worked as a Latin Ballroom instructor for the last two years. – Audition

Janette Manrara – Dance Specialty: Salsa – Hometown: Miami, FL – Currently Resides: Hialeah, FL – Age: 25 – Manrara began performing in musical theater at age 12, and started her formal dance training at 19, studying Ballroom, Ballet, Pointe, Jazz and Hip Hop. She currently attends Florida State University. – Audition

Jeanine Mason – Dance Specialty: Contemporary – Hometown: Miami, FL – Currently Resides: Pinecrest, FL – Age: 18 – A recent graduate of the Ransom Everglades School, Mason plans to attend the University of California, Los Angeles in the fall. She began her dance training in Ballet and Lyrical and then went on to study Jazz, Acrobatics, Hip Hop, Modern and Contemporary.

Kayla Radomski – Dance Specialty: Jazz/Contemporary – Hometown: Aurora, CO – Currently Resides: Aurora, CO – Age: 18 – Radomski has been dancing for most of her life, and participating in SO YOU THINK YOU CAN DANCE is one of her most rewarding experiences. She is grateful to her amazing mother who has supported her love of dance for so many years. Radomski also enjoys acting and singing. – Audition

Melissa Sandvig – Dance Specialty: Ballet – Hometown: Los Alamitos, CA – Currently Resides: Los Alamitos, CA – Age: 29 – Sandvig has been dancing for most of her life. She has danced with the Milwaukee Ballet Company, LA Opera, Long Beach Ballet and Helios Dance Theater. A highlight for Sandvig was performing …Le Coeur Illumine at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion.

Paris Torres – Dance Specialty: Contemporary- Hometown: Issaquah, WA – Currently Resides: Issaquah, WA – Age: 19 – Torres is a graduate of Skyline High School. She began dancing when she was 6 years old and now teaches at a studio near her home. She was also a Miss Washington Teen pageant winner, and was a Seattle Storm and Seattle Sonic Jr. dancer from 2000-2003. – Audition

Ashley Valerio – Dance Specialty: Contemporary – Hometown: Mesa, AZ – Currently Resides: North Hollywood, CA – Age: 22 – Valerio has been dancing for most of her life. She is a graduate of Mountain View High School.

The Guys

Kupono Aweau – Dance Specialty: Lyrical/Contemporary – Hometown: Honolulu, HI – Currently Resides: Kailua, HI – Age: 23 – Aweau graduated from the Kamehameha Schools and has been dancing since he was 16 years old. He loves his home state of Hawaii, and is an avid collector of home furnishings. – Audition

Tony Bellissimo – Dance Specialty: Hip Hop – Hometown: Buffalo, NY – Currently Resides: Buffalo, NY – Age: 20 – Bellissimo has been dancing for most of his life. He is a graduate of Frontier High School, and played on the school soccer, football and lacrosse teams. He likes to write short stories and poems, and his favorite professional dancer is Barry Lather.- Vegas Solo

Brandon Bryant – Dance Specialty: Contemporary – Hometown: Miami, FL – Currently Resides: Salt Lake City, UT – Age: 19 – Bryant began dancing ballet at age 10. He is a graduate of Coral Reef Senior High School and now attends Miami Dade College. His most memorable dance experience was performing for Madonna at her daughter birthday party. – Audition

Phillip Chbeeb – Dance Specialty: Popping – Hometown: Houston, TX – Currently Resides: Los Angeles, CA – Age: 20 – Chbeeb has had no formal dance training, but began dancing when he was 15 years old. At age 16, he founded the Marvelous Motion Studio in Houston. He is currently an engineering physics major at Loyola Marymount University.   – Audition

Jason Glover – Dance Specialty: Lyrical/Contemporary – Hometown: Fresno, CA – Currently Resides: Fresno, CA – Age: 21 – Glover began dancing at age 12, studying Tap and Hip Hop. He is a graduate of Bullard High School, and his favorite dancer is Michael Jackson.

Vitolio Jeune – Dance Specialty: Contemporary – Hometown: PÃ ©tionville, Haiti – Currently Resides: Miami, FL – Age: 26 – Jeune began dancing at age 18, and is a graduate of Florida New World School of the Arts. He loves motorcycles, and his favorite dancer is Desmond Richardson.

Max Kapitannikov – Dance Specialty: Latin Ballroom – Hometown: Moscow, Russia – Currently Resides: Brooklyn, NY – Age: 26 – Kapitannikov has been dancing for as long as he can remember. He comes from a dancing family, and his mother is a ballet teacher. He also enjoys sculpting and playing the guitar. He attended the Manhattan Comprehensive High School. – Audition

Evan Kasprzak – Dance Specialty: Broadway – Hometown: West Bloomfield, MI – Currently Resides: West Bloomfield, MI – Age: 21 – Kasprzak graduated from Wylie E. Groves High School and currently attends Illinois Wesleyan University. He has been dancing since he was 6 years old, and his most memorable dance experience was performing in a Gregory Hines tribute with Hines family in the audience. – Audition

Ade Obayomi – Dance Specialty: Contemporary – Hometown: Chandler, AZ – Currently Resides: Orange County, CA – Age: 20 – Obayomi has been dancing since he was 6 years old. He is a graduate of Corona Del Sol High School and currently attends Chapman University. A dance highlight for him was performing at Radio City Music Hall.

Jonathan Platero – Dance Specialty: Salsa – Hometown: Sanford, FL – Currently Resides: New York, NY – Age: 21 – Platero was a gymnast before he began dancing at age 16. He is a graduate of Seminole High School, was a World Salsa finalist in 2006-2007 and performed as a dancer and acrobat in …High School Musical.

About mj santilli 33692 Articles
Founder and editor of, home of the awesomest fan community on the net. I love cheesy singing shows of all kinds, whether reality or scripted. I adore American Idol, but also love The Voice, Glee, X Factor and more!


  1. Interesting Nigel twitter-
    dizzyfeet: A lot of people are suggesting Ryan choreographs this Season. If he did, he would be a Fox employee and not allowed to compete next season?

    I say choreograph- he’s not going to look any younger this fall and the exposure would be beneficial to his career.

  2. I agree wholeheartedly.

    Also, isn’t he several years older than his brother? I recall him saying he “waited for his brother to grow up so he could be his best friend” (which by the way is one of the coolest things I have ever heard). So, how many years does he have left.

    Choreographing for his brother would be an incredible thrill I am sure.

  3. they need Ryan as a choreographer if only for the simple reason that they WAY overuse Tyce every year. They need some fresh blood for the Broadway routines.

    I’m glad we’ve “met” the top 20. Too bad I still know next to nothing about half of them.

    Also MJ. Dunno if you know this but, Lil C and Adam Shankman are on twitter too. Lil C has up an interesting series of tweets about Natalie. You can find them thru Nigel’s page.

  4. I think the upper age limit for the show is 30 if I’m not mistaken. Ryan is 29, which means he has 1 year of eligibility left.

    I kind of think that if they really wanted him to be a competitor, they would have taken him this time around, given that Evan has several years of eligibility left.

    I say let Ryan choreograph…I really think he has a better shot at making a career out of that than as a performer. This could be a good step in for him.

  5. Wow… there are a lot of contempory dancers. I wish they would put a tap dancer in there one of these years.

    Karla Garcia toured with “wicked”. I wonder if she knows Adam Lambert?

    I would LOVE Ryan to choreograph. He would be great! Plus, it would give us a fresh perspective on broadway. I hope Nigel considers it. As long as he doesn’t choreograph his brother (Evan), I don’t see a problem with it.

  6. Why not let Ryan decide? He’s the only one who knows what he aches to do and what his other options are right now. I would love to see him as a contestant–silly me, I think he’s better looking than several of the other guys this year, and more attractive (factoring in his heart and humor) than any of them, except maybe his brother (call it a tie). If his heart is set on dancing, I say let him tryout again next time. Taking the choreography gig could feel like giving up on the dream to be a dancer, first and foremost.

    On the other hand, I would love to see more of his choreography. He also seems to have a wonderful way about him as a teacher and coach, and would be great for the contestants to work with. According to his website, he’s already gotten acclaim in NY for his choreography (and his performing, for that matter), so he’s not a complete unknown in the field.

    So, let him decide. Whichever he chooses, as long as we get to see more of his work (of either kind), we and the show will be the winners.

  7. Does anybody watch Primeval on BBC America?

    Isn’t Janette a dead ringer for the evil Helen Cutter? Maybe it was just Janette’s fake British accent in that introductory clip, but if her boyfriend watches Primeval, I can see why he may have ditched her! ;-)

  8. I would love to see Ryan pick up some of the Broadway choreography – Tyce’s stuff is getting boring to me, and some of the best choreography they’ve had on the show in recent years has been from former contestants (Dmitry, Benji, etc.).

    This is one thing I really enjoy about SYTYCD – I love that they continue to nurture their contestants, encouraging them to come back and try again after a failed audition run, or continue to be involved in the show in other capacities. AI could learn a lot from this – imagine how strong a fanbase they could build for some of these kids if say Jesse or Felicia or Ricky were to come back and try out again. By the time someone like that won, they could have a real foothold and some serious loyalty with the audience.

    I’m so glad it’s SYTYCD time again – I have so much more fun watching this show every year than AI. It’s better for my health.

  9. Oy! It’s nice (for me, at least, heh) to see another Pinay in there. (I loved Melody in Season 1.) She’s obviously cannon fodder but I hope she surprises. :D

  10. Interesting Nigel twitter-
    dizzyfeet: A lot of people are suggesting Ryan choreographs this Season. If he did, he would be a Fox employee and not allowed to compete next season?

    I think he could go either way as long as he gets to choreograph eventually. That’s really key for me. I want to see his work, and maybe him at the judges table!

  11. Per the eligibility form on the SYTYCD website

    Over 18/Under 31: Contestants must be no younger than 18 or older than 30 years of age on the first day they register for auditions.”

    So it would seem that Ryan can try out for Season 6 this summer, and perhaps Season 7 if they do fall auditions.

    Does anybody watch Primeval on BBC America?

    Isnà ¢Ã¢â€š ¬Ã¢â€ž ¢t Janette a dead ringer for the evil Helen Cutter?

    OMG! You are right! Ooooo… Season 3 has a bunch of surprises too. :sealed_tb: I would dl and watch the new episodes Sat nights as soon as the torrents were available on EZTV. I love Conner! What a goofball. :thumbup_tb:

  12. Wowà ¢Ã¢â€š ¬ ¦ there are a lot of contempory dancers. I wish they would put a tap dancer in there one of these years.

    If I’m not mistaken, Evan’s audition last year was a tap routine.

  13. I am excited to see which couples get paired together.

    And which ones will do a dance to “No Boundaries” while another possibly does a “Mad World” number.

    Actually, Nigel loathed NB. I don’t know if he would want to commission a frantic contemporary number to that.

  14. Karla Garcia toured with à ¢Ã¢â€š ¬Ã…“wickedà ¢Ã¢â€š ¬ . I wonder if she knows Adam Lambert?

    I am betting that Karla gets asked this question quite a bit. I want to know the answer.

    I am trying to remember if any previous dancers did a routine (solo) to Gene Kelly’s Singin’ In the Rain? I love this dance sequence and feel Evan would be perfect.

    It is quite possible Ryan will be picked up by a Broadway dance troupe. I love his attitude and dance style.

  15. Evan will get many votes even before the competition begin, thanks to the only 1 brother got thru top 20 in the last episode.

    This year, it seems like the top 20 had so many comeback constestants from last year or year before.

    I count there are maybe 8 or more dancers that had try out few times but finally make it this year.

    They are:

    Ashley (Have not seen her but she admit she had try 4 times)
    Asuka (got cut last year in Vegas week),
    Brandon (Got cut at the last moment last year),
    Evan (also got cut in the last top 40) ,
    Janette (cut in vegas week),
    Jason ( he was in the same group dance with twitch last year and had melt down),
    Phillip (success after his third attempt ),
    randi (never seen her but she said she had audition SYTYCD before)

  16. Jonathan Platero is a fine looking woman??? He looks a lot like Caitlin :ponder_tb:

  17. wow, Jonathan is beeeeeeeeeutiful. Looks just like a ………girl. lol.
    Mj……..i think you have the last picture incorrectly posted or Jonathan had a serious sex change operation in the last few days.

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