Miami dancer to take center stage on 13th season of SYTYCD

DORAL, FLA. (WSVN) - A 12-year-old ballroom dancer from Miami will be showing off her SoFlo moves when “So You Think You Can Dance” returns to FOX-TV, Monday night.

There’s a twist on the hit show’s 13th season. A new generation of dancers will hit the stage, giving contestants ages 8 to 13 a chance to display their talents.

Among them is South Florida resident Camila Schwarz, who flew to Los Angeles for the first audition and made it through. “I got a golden ticket, and I was so happy,” she said.

Camila told 7News she knew she had to audition the second she heard she could qualify to appear on the televised dancing competition. “When I got the news that kids can try out now, I was like, ‘I have to do this. This can be a big dream,'” she said.

Camila said the process was nerve-wracking, but she shook off the nerves. She was excited to impress returning judges Nigel Lythgoe, Paula Abdul and Jason Derulo.

The judges said the first audition already proves the competition will be tough. “Well, I can tell you right now, we’ve never put so many contestants through as we are today here in L.A.,” said Abdul. “It’s one after another, and it’s astonishing to see how well they’re being trained and disciplined in their dance styles. It’s incredible; we’re seeing amazing talent.”

Derulo praised the dancers for their willingness to take criticism. “[I was impressed by] how well they take the notes,” he said.

When it comes to criticizing these young dancers, Lythgoe said they can handle it. “These kids are so accustomed to competitions, it’s almost easier to judge them and give them quite harsh criticisms, too,” he said. “They take it really well.”

Miami native Gaby Diaz, 19, won last year’s season. Camila said she watched every step of her journey and hopes she will also make South Florida proud this year. “I want to get far,” she said.

The season premiere of “So You Think You Can Dance: The Next Generation” airs Monday at 8 p.m. on WSVN.

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