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Stepping Out

Meet the young performer turning the dance world on its head

'So You Think You Can Dance Live!' sashays to Long Island


Fans of Fox’s “So You Think You Can Dance” will want to dance in the aisles at Tilles Center for the Performing Arts. The Emmy Award-winning show has been captivating audiences with its touring showcase, “So You Think You Can Dance Live!,” which makes it way here on Oct. 26.
Season 16’s most popular routines will be featured along with original pieces crafted specifically for the nationwide tour. You’ll be able to experience the action brought into living rooms every week live with a variety of sizzling, one-of-a-kind dance numbers featuring lyrical, salsa, hip-hop and contemporary choreography.
The cast includes SYTYCD all-stars Cyrus Spencer and Lauren Froderman, and the top 10 finalists of Season 16, including Bailey Munoz, who this year became the first-ever break-boy dancer to win the show.
Munoz, 19, described the style of dance as a form of break dancing, which exists under the umbrella of hip-hop. What attracted him to the genre, he says, was how heroic “breakers” look while busting a move.
“It felt like I was watching superheroes — their moves seemed virtually impossible to me,” he says. “But I wanted to be a superhero, too.”

Munoz has been dancing his entire life, often stealing the show at family reunions and social gatherings, he recalls, and started his professional career at a young age. At age 10, he was a semifinalist on “America’s Got Talent.” Every time he has performed, he says, “I gave it 100 percent, and left my heart out on that stage.”
Munoz brought that passion to “SYTYCD” this summer, noting that it was a childhood dream to dance on its storied stage. He was particularly excited to dance for Dominic “D-Trix” Sandoval, a Season 16 judge who first competed on the show’s third season, and returned as an all-star for season seven.
Like Munoz, Sandoval’s preferred dance genres are break-boy and hip-hop, and also like Sandoval, Munoz also has a B-Boy nickname: “Bailrok,” a combination of his first name and an old habit. “A mentor said I used to love to rock to the music,” he says.
Winning the show he had long admired was “insane” and “surreal,” Munoz says. “I’ve worked so hard in my life, and I felt like my hard work paid off,” he added. “I knew I could win, I always said I wanted to win, but being in the top 10 alone was a blessing, so I was already proud of myself.”
Another point of pride is Munoz’s heritage, he says. In addition to being the first B-boy dancer to win the show, he also wants to represent Filipino dancers everywhere. He credits his parents, who “sacrificed so much so I could live my dream.”
This is the first national dance tour of Munoz’s career, and despite being only 19, he is not the youngest dancer in the cast. The oldest dancer, however, is merely 21.
“Every time we’re up on the stage we dance older than we are,” he says. “Everyone is talented in their own way, and they’re so versatile — they can do any style they’re given.”
Munoz says he has enjoyed the tour so far, touring cities he’s never seen, seeing fans he’s impacted through the show, meeting new people and sharing a new journey with his best friends — his castmates.
“This journey has been such a blessing, and we’re all just soaking in every single moment,” he adds.
“So You Think You Can Dance Live!” is co-directed by Raj Kapoor and Rita Maye, with dance routines overseen by actress and Emmy Award-winning supervising choreographer Mandy Moore. For more information, visit www.dancelivetour.com.

So You Think You Can Dance Live!
When: Saturday, Oct. 26, 8 p.m. Tickets are $109, $89, $69, $49.
Where: Tilles Center for the Performing Arts, LIU Post, 720 Northern Blvd., Brookville. (800) 745-3000 or www.ticketmaster.com or www.tillescenter.org.