Video: Mass. EMT ends her run on ‘So You Think You Can Dance’

Zyiasia Knighton with AMR Springfield was one of 42 contestants during the national auditions to make it through to the round two call-backs


Aprell May Munford
masslive.com

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. — During the fourth week of auditions on “So You Think You Can Dance,” Zyiasia Knighton and nine other contestants’ journey came to an end after Wednesday’s first round big cut.

With training received at the Massachusetts Academy of Ballet in Holyoke, Knighton’s wowed the judges with a self-choreographed ballet routine in the first round.

The 19-year-old Springfield native was one of 42 contestants during the national auditions to make it through to the round two call-backs.

Round two was led by professional choreographer Mandy Moore. With three rounds of intense choreography, contestants were split up to test their grit in their own genre against their peers, on partnered numbers and interdisciplinary group dance all to compete vie for a space in the Top 12.

Knighton — a Bay Path University student, Massachusetts National Air Guard member and EMT — was cut after the first test.

“It has not really hit me,” Knighton said immediately after the decision. “That this will be my last time on that stage.”

According to Knighton, the most important part of the “So You Think You Can Dance” journey was personal growth, and she wants younger dancers to cherish every moment on stage.

”Everything has been about self-growth and how I can believe in myself,” Knighton said. “Younger dancers you can believe in yourself and you can achieve anything you put your mind to. ... Every time you perform take it all in; because that moment doesn’t last forever and you will miss it.

“Every time you dance, dance like it is the last time you will ever be able to dance,” she said.

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