After two long summers off the air So You Think You Can Dance is back on FOX for season 17. However, the network has “freshened up” the format. The judges panel is all new. Although creator Nigel Lythgoe is still credited as an executive producer, a new showrunner will lead the new season. Also, FOX did not ask him to return to the judges table. Instead, the network completely recast the panel. Thankfully, keeping a link to the past, Cat Deeley will return as host.
In the SYTYCD cold open, which is posted below, new judges JoJo Siwa, Stephen “tWitch” Boss, and Matthew Morrison join aspiring dancers from across America for a choreographed routine. It’s the first time all three SYTYCD judges perform together on the show. And that speaks to the youthful tone the show is striving for in what really is a reboot of the long-running competition.
The judges appear on screens across the country: In coffee shops, classrooms, prompting the kids to spill out into the street and dance. “Dance is back,” tWitch announces. “Let’s go.”
tWitch is currently finishing up his stint as executive producer on the retiring Ellen DeGeneres Show. But before that sweet gig, he auditioned for SYTYCD, got cut, auditioned again the following season and went further. He appeared again on the show as an All-Star mentor and then as a choreographer. He understands the process every step of the way.
JoJo has been dancing since childhood. She burst onto the dance scene as an 11 year old cast member of Dance Moms. After becoming a social media sensation, she eventually competed on Dancing with the Stars in 2021 as part of the first same-sex partnership with pro-dancer and SYTYCD alum Jenna Johnson.
Matt famously played Mr. Schue on the wildly popular FOX musical comedy Glee for six seasons. An accomplished dancer, he originated the role of Link Larkin in the Broadway musical Hairspray.
After FOX cancelled So You Think You Can Dance in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic restrictions, Cat eventually sold her Los Angeles house and moved back to the United Kingdom with her husband Patrick Kielty and two children. Would Cat even host SYTYCD if FOX asked? Luckily for fans the answer is yes! She is one of the best competitive reality hosts in the business.
So You Think You Can Dance premieres on FOX Wednesday May 18 at 9 pm after The Masked Singer season 7 finale at 8 pm. We’re live blogging the entire season. Join us!
— Nigel Lythgoe OBE (@dizzyfeet) May 12, 2022