The preliminary auditions for So You Think You Can Dance 2012 came to a close June 13 with Salt Lake City try-outs. Although panelists Nigel Lythgoe, Mary Murphy and Adam Shankman were treated to performances by a wide array of talented wanna-be stars, it was the final audition of the evening, delivered by Sacramento, Calif. native Leroy Martinez, that drew the best reaction. But did he make it through to Las Vegas?
Leroy, 29, hit the SYTYCD stage dressed in a blue shirt emblazoned with the word "Peacemakers," which he identified as an after school program for kids. By appearing on the show, he hoped to spark the creation of more like-programs for at-risk youth. He credited dance with keeping him out of trouble while growing up, impelling Nigel to call him "a beautiful person."
The portly performer delivered an impressive routine, including a few doubly impressive back-flips, and the audience absolutely loved him. Although not technically perfect, he absolutely illuminated the stage like few have done. Adam told Leroy that he'd inspired him and made him want to be the best guy possible. Mary called him "an absolute joy" and said she'd root for him "in life," but not necessarily on the show. Nigel agreed with Mary, expressing concern that he'd be unable to keep up with the rest of the pack.
Leroy's preliminary audition earned him a ticket to the choreography round, whereas Nigel and Mary predicted, he wasn't able to match up to the other contestants. The judges gave him a standing ovation before issuing his walking papers, though, with Adam dubbing him a "diamond" and a "king."
Tune in to So You Think You Can Dance 2012 next week as the competition moves to the next round in Las Vegas sans Leroy Martinez. Which of the 181 remaining hopefuls who did make it through will have what it takes to advance to the top 20? Watch and find out.