Jenna was thrilled to be on the set of the Chicago dance auditions in early March to tape the upcoming 11th season of "So You Think You Can Dance" (SYTYCD), which premieres on Wednesday, May 28th, marking her return as a guest judge for the second time on the hit FOX dance competition-reality show. Along with the show's permanent judges, Mary Murphy, a ballroom dance champion and choreographer, and Nigel Lythgoe, SYTYCD creator and executive producer, Jenna watched prospective contestants dance in a variety of American and international dance styles with amazing talent, heart, passion, and exuberant energy, all working to earn a coveted spot on the show.
The new season of So You Think You Can Dance will premiere on FOX in June 2014.
That same weekend in the "Windy City," Jenna was given the opportunity to experience more inspiring dance. As a board member of the Dizzy Feet Foundation, a nonprofit organization created to benefit the dance community, Jenna was invited to visit Hubbard Street Dance Chicago.
Along with Nigel Lythgoe, SYTYCD creator and executive producer and co-president and founding member of the Dizzy Feet Foundation, and Danae Rees, executive director of Dizzy Feet Foundation, Jenna was welcomed to observe rehearsals of the company, as well as its youth program classes.
Hubbard Street Dance Chicago features 18 dancers and is one of the only dance companies in America to perform year-round, domestically as well as overseas.
It continues to advocate for the work both of internationally renowned master choreographers as well as emerging talent under its own roof.
The day Jenna visited, the company was rehearsing in their West Loop facility for their Spring Series, which includes four works by contemporary dance choreographer, Jiří Kylián, originally from the Czech Republic.
Jenna was also treated to a glimpse of The Hubbard Street Youth Dance Program's Hip Hop A and Choreo Lab classes. These are examples of the type of dance programs to which the Dizzy Feet Foundation provides scholarships and assistance. Sponsoring, funding and/or offering community-based dance programs that expose children in low-income areas to the lifelong benefits of dance education, the foundation thereby helps talented, underserved young people realize their dreams of becoming professional dancers.
Dizzy Feet Foundation also aims to elevate and standardize the quality of dance instruction throughout the United States by offering accreditation and/or certification to dance schools and studios in most styles of dance, including ballroom, contemporary, ballet, tap, jazz and hip hop.
The foundation’s Accreditation Program will be the gold standard for dance instruction in the United States; it will ensure that students can feel confident that they are receiving high-quality dance instruction aligned to a national standard.
So, all in all, despite the mounds of packed snow and below freezing temperatures, Jenna had a fun and unforgettable weekend of work, play, laughs, dance, and artistic inspiration... what could be better?
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