CTV announced today the additional So You Think You Can Dance Canada judges set to spark dance fever across the country. Making their debut at the Halifax auditions on Monday, May 5 is star choreographer Melissa Williams from Windsor, ON, who has worked with such artists as Prince and Bryan Adams, and special guest judge Dan Karaty from the hit U.S. series So You Think You Can Dance. Calgary native Sean Cheesman, the current host and lead judge of the U.K. dance competition Dirty Dancing: Time of Your Life, will make his debut as a special guest judge in Calgary on Monday, May 12.
Williams, Cheesman and Karaty join the seven previously announced So You Think You Can Dance Canada judges, including permanent judges Tré Armstrong and Jean Marc Genereux; alternating third judges Luther Brown and Blake McGrath, who is also the audition tour choreographer; and special guest judges Rex Harrington, Paul Becker and Mary Murphy. The cast is completed by series host Leah Miller.
“From Prince to Tina Turner, Melissa, Sean and Dan have worked with some of the world’s most electrifying artists,” said Susanne Boyce, President, Creative and Channels, CTV Inc. “Canada’s dance talent will surely benefit from having these mentors participate in the series.”
The So You Think You Can Dance Canada judges will continue on the audition tour at the following cities on the dates listed below (subject to change):
Monday, May 5
Cunard Centre (NOTE UPDATED LOCATION)
961 Marginal Rd.
Jean Marc Genereux
Monday, May 12
MacEwan Conference & Event Centre,
2500 University Drive N.W.
Jean Marc Genereux
Tuesday, May 27
1594 St-Denis Street
Monday, June 9 (NOTE DATE CHANGE)
Metro Toronto Convention Centre
John Bassett Theatre
255 Front Street West
Below is a list of biographies for the additional So You Think You Can Dance Canada judges
About Melissa Williams
Windsor native Melissa Williams is one of the most innovative choreographer/directors working in the entertainment industry today. Recognized for her versatility, musicality and keen eye for the stage, Williams is also known for her sexy, edgy, athletic, “rock-n-roll meets theatre” choreography. It began in 1993, when Williams embarked on a four-year experience with Prince. In 1997, Prince and Mayte called upon Williams to choreograph a three-act dance concert featuring the music of Prince and the NPG, called Around The World In A Day. After spending months choreographing, rehearsing and helping to develop the New Power Generation Dance Company, Williams found her love for live theatre. Williams has since worked with some of the most established artists in the industry, including George Michael, Bryan Adams, Michael Caine, Randy Quaid, Catherine McCormack, Carmen Electra, David LaChapelle, McG, Paul Verhoeven and Joseph Kahn. Over the past two years, Williams and her company, DM Creative, have choreographed and staged live musical productions around the world including Grease The Musical, HAIR The Musical, Generations, Piano Man and Undercover.
About Sean Cheesman
Calgary’s Sean Cheesman is an internationally-renowned dancer/choreographer who has worked with some of the world’s top entertainers, including Michael Jackson, Janet Jackson, TLC, Prince, Vanessa Williams, Carmen Electra, Tina Turner, Whitney Houston, Queen Latifah, Cher and Britney Spears. >From his Canadian beginnings as a figure skater and dancer, Cheesman went on to study at Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater in New York City. In the years that followed, Cheesman toured with Janet Jackson as a choreographer and dancer. He subsequently choreographed the Diamonds and Pearls tour for Prince as well as tours for Faith Hill and No Angels. As a performer, Cheesman appeared in the film The Bodyguard, starring Whitney Houston. His television works include The Ride Divine, Guys Next Door, MTV, the Soul Train Music Awards and Janet Jackson’s performance on Saturday Night Live. Cheesman teaches dance workshops on three continents and has written, directed and choreographed large-scale musicals in Russia and Japan. He is the recipient of numerous awards, including two MTV awards for choreography, and was also nominated for a Bob Fosse choreography award. Cheesman is currently the host and lead judge of the U.K television series Dirty Dancing: Time of Your Life.
About Dan Karaty
Dan Karaty is currently a judge and choreographer on the American version of So You Think You Can Dance. Karaty made his Broadway debut in Footloose during his junior year at NYU. By his senior year, he was touring with Britney Spears and had appeared on the MTV Awards and The Billboard Music Awards. Karaty and his friend Wade Robson collaborated on Spears’ first Pepsi commercial and the ‘NSYNC World Tour. Karaty went on to choreograph videos and tours for Jessica Simpson, Kylie Minogue, ’NSYNC and Spears, and most recently choreographed the feature film Music & Lyrics with Hugh Grant.
For a complete list of bios for all the So You Think You Can Dance Canada judges, please visit dance.ctv.ca.
So You Think You Can Dance Canada was created by Simon Fuller and Nigel Lythgoe and is produced in association with CTV by Danse TV Productions. Sandra Faire and Trisa Dayot are Executive Producers. Ed Robinson is Executive Vice-President, Programming, CTV Inc. Susanne Boyce is President, Creative, Content and Channels, CTV Inc.