You can see it in the athleticism of his contemporary dance style.
Askew, 19, of Lynnwood, is among this summer's top 20 contestants on Fox TV's 11th season of “So You Think You Can Dance.” The show airs at 8 p.m. Wednesdays.
Between rehearsals last week, Askew took a few minutes to talk on the phone.
The Meadowdale High School graduate began dancing at age 8, studying first at the former Camille's Dance Edge studio in Lynnwood.
“I think having played sports as a kid actually helped me in my dance career,” Askew said. “Strength training is definitely part of it.”
By the time he was in high school, Askew was flying to Los Angeles each weekend to study dance.
“It was really hard to fly out on Friday evenings and fly back early on Mondays with just enough time to make it to class,” Askew said. “I did a lot of homework on those plane rides and I missed out on a lot of things that most people enjoy about high school.”
But the effort was important, Askew said.
The stint on Fox this summer isn't his first TV show. Askew appeared previously on a Disney channel dance competition as well.
Askew said he has an ability to physically connect to music in a way that some other dancers do not. He is trained in hip hop, ballet, jazz, lyrical and ballroom dance.
“For ‘So You think You Can Dance' I think you have to be adept or excel in all styles of dance,” Askew said.
Askew said he was pleased to be selected for the show and to be in the top 20 dancers this season.
“During the audition, I wasn't sure I had done enough to prove my ability,” he said. “So I was shocked and really happy to be a part of it.”
Askew credits his family.
“This is all because of the support of my family and their enthusiasm,” he said. “They have supported me for so many years.”
His parents are Lisa and Dale Askew of Lynnwood. His brother Jeff is a student at Washington State University.
This past Wednesday on “So You Think You Can Dance” Askew was paired with fellow contemporary dancer Emily James, 21, of Rhode Island.
Choreographed by Travis Wall, their routine was set to the John Legend song “All of Me.” It drew praise from judges Mary Murphy and Nigel Lythgoe as well as guest judge Jason Derulo.
This week, one woman and one man will be eliminated from the dance competition.
“Keep watching,” Askew said. “I hope everyone back home will keep watching.”
Gale Fiege: 425-339-3427; firstname.lastname@example.org.
WATCH CASEY DANCE
WINNER GETS SHOT AT BROADWAY
The show announced that the Season 11 winner will get a shot at a small role in a revival of “On the Town.”
The show's Broadway tie-in also will include “On the Town” choreographer Joshua Bergasse planning a performance of “New York, New York” featuring the Top 20 finalists on July 9.
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