So Dan Thinks He Can Dance

by Daniel May 20, 2008
So Dan Thinks He Can Dance

For Dan Karaty, dancing is the family business. His parents were both Broadway performers, but Dan's hip-hop choreography took him to So You Think You Can Dance, which starts its fourth season on Thursday. Dan took time during auditions in February to talk to Television Without Pity about what's in store this year, and whether dancing shows are the appropriate place for political protests.

TWoP: Thanks very much for taking the time to do this with us. I guess you must be pretty busy with the auditions going on right now.

Dan: Aw, yeah, but it's all good. I look forward to it.

TWoP: What are some of the highlights so far from the audition process?

Dan: The talent just seems to be getting better and better. I've been doing a few cities so far. I know they did Salt Lake, Dallas and Charleston. Every year, you think the talent gets better on the show, we think, "Gosh, are we going to find good enough dancers this year?" And it just gets better and better. It's great.

TWoP: Is there anything that we're going to see that's different this year? What's new for the next season?

Dan: You're going to be seeing obviously some new musical performances, how we have guest recording artists come out there. We got a couple surprises in the bag, and a couple other performers that'll be out there that'll surprise you. And we've mixed up the audition dates this year and we're doing new cities. Like Washington, D.C., which we've never done before. So we're going to scope out some new and different talent out there.

TWoP: Let's talk about you for a second now. Both of your parents were Broadway performers.

Dan: That's right.

TWoP: What steered you towards hip-hop instead of more traditional dance?

Dan: I think it just kinda happened. You know, I grew up studying everything, from hip-hop to jazz to modern, everything. But when I moved out to California, it just seemed to me the direction my career went in. I just got hired for more jobs that were hip-hop, you know, and I got into those kinds of classes, and a lot of the dancers that I was working with were all hip-hop dancers. It just sort of happened that way. I still love all forms of dance, love training all forms of dance and choreographing all forms, but hip-hop just seems the direction my career went in.

TWoP: Did your parents want you to do a more Broadway style, or were they happy with your career choice?

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