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Lauren Performs SYTYCD's First Tahitian Routine

07/15/2010 12:00AM

After receiving nothing but admiration and praise from the So You Think You Can Dance judges, contemporary dancer Ashley Galvan found herself sidelined from the competition this week thanks to a nasty rib injury. Even though the judges have commended her technical skill and vulnerability, she’ll automatically be up for elimination on Thursday. And if her injury doesn’t heal, she’ll suffer the same fate as Alex Wong, who gracefully bowed out of the competition last week to have ankle surgery.

The remaining six dancers took to the stage Wednesday and, following the show’s new format, performed two numbers including the season’s first disco and the first ever Tahitian and break-dance routines. “I was extremely nervous because I didn’t want to offend who are really into Tahitian dancing or practice it their whole lives,” Lauren Froderman told PEOPLE of her feathery performance. “But I just had fun. And I got lei’d!”

B-boy Jose Ruiz, on the other hand, had fewer nerves when it came to debuting the break-dance piece. While his Broadway routine danced with all star Courtney made his lack of formal training painfully obvious, he made sure to deliver in his second number. “That was for the b-boys,” he said after the show. “A lot of us start off practicing in our garages. This shows them that we can do this too. We can make this an art form. We can make this amazing.”

Contemporary dancer Robert Roldan’s duet with all star Allison also hit home, not just for the dancers but for judge Mia Michaels. She was brought to tears by the performance, which was about coping with a loved one being sick, and said it reminded her of wanting to fix her mother before she passed away. “It was a gift. I related to it so much,” said Roldan whose own mother battled breast cancer. “I still don’t know how to react to what happened. Everything just clicked, it really hit me hard and I gave it all I got.” And his hard work paid off tremendously as Adam Shankman, who was also in tears, declared it one of the performances of the season.



As for fallen favorite Wong, the contestants are only trying to move forward from his abrupt departure. "I feel like everything happens for a reason ... but he probably would have won,” said fan favorite Kent Boyd, who, according to Nigel Lythgoe, now stands a fair chance in the competition since Wong has left.

Though his absence may have paved the way for a new standout none of the dancers are rejoicing. “I don’t think anyone felt like ‘Alex is gone, yay!’ ” Adechike Torbert said to PEOPLE. “It sucked. We just wish the best for everyone. I wish he was still here.” --Mussarat Bata

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