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Wednesday 24 Sep 2014

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So You Think You Can Dance: Tommy Franzen

Tommy Franzen

Swedish street dancer who is also a sports massage therapist.

Tommy grew up in Sweden with his sister Elena, who is seven years older then he is, and she is the person who introduced him to the world of dance – they both attended David Johnson's hip-hop dance classes in their home country.

He got his first major break aged 14 when he was cast in Joseph in Sweden. He then continued working for another five years within musical theatre and hip-hop dance shows in Sweden until year 2000 when he moved to London to study at The Urdang Academy on a scholarship. He graduated three years later with a National Diploma in Performing Arts.

Tommy's career has gone from strength to strength since his graduation within a wide work field, ranging from hip-hop dance theatre and harness work to films and music videos.

He turned down the chance to appear in Cirque Du Soleil to appear as a dancer in Mamma Mia – The Movie as well as Harry Potter And The Goblet Of Fire.

He played one of the lead roles as Ali Baba at the 15th Asian Games in Doha 2006, performing as an aerialist. At the Beijing Olympic and Paralympic Handover Ceremonies in 2008 Tommy not only danced but also assisted the choreographer.


"London, but I was born in Sweden, in a village called Alstop. I moved to London in 2000."

Favourite song to dance to?

"Anything old-school funk."

Greatest dancing fear?

"Falling over and getting injured on stage."

Best physical feature?

"My back! I do a lot of rock climbing and have developed my back quite a lot."

Worst dance habit?

"I sometimes pull a strange facial expression when I prepare for a strenuous move. It can look a bit weird."

Most embarrassing moment on stage?

"I was doing Joseph And His Technicolour Dreamcoat in Sweden and was chatting with somebody backstage. I got so engrossed I forgot which number I was doing and ran smack bang into the wrong song. The lights came up on me, knocking somebody out of a headstand, on the wrong side of the stage. I was mortified."

How did you get into dance?

"I watched my sister and teacher and got inspired without knowing it. They caught me imitating them and I was very embarrassed, but they suggested I give it a try. I was aged 11."

Where did you train?

"Lund, in Sweden. I trained in hip-hop – an American brother and sister came from California and opened a dance school there with new moves and styles."

What's your favourite type of dance?

"Hip-hop, definitely."

What's it like working on a TV show?

"I enjoy it. It's different from performing live – so far there's not been the thrill of an audience when we've been doing it in front of the cameras, so I'm looking forward to the live shows."

Have you bonded with the other contestants?

"Yeah, we're spending more and more time with everyone. I knew Lizzie already, so I hang a lot with her."

Are the judges as scary as they seem?

"Yeah, they are! I'm concerned what Nigel's going to say. You can really see him judging you and sometimes I feel scared about what's coming out of his mouth!"

What are your future plans?

"I want to carry on training, go to LA again and take a lot of classes. I want to be free and train, constantly reach higher grounds."

Why did you enter the competition?

"For the challenge! I want to see how far I can go and push my limits. It's a test."

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