Jeanine Mason won the fifth season of So You Think You Can Dance in August 2009. The fun Floridian was not a front-runner from the start...

by Free Britney at . Comments

Jeanine Mason, winner of So You Think You Can Dance Season 5, chatted a bit with Entertainment Weekly about her recent victory on the Fox summer reality show.

Here are some excerpts from the 18-year-old Floridian's interview, in which she shares impressions of the season finale, breaking into the spotlight and more:

So You Think You Can Dance Hopefuls

EW: When did you get the idea that you could make it to the final four?

Jeanine Mason: I didn’t think I was popular for a long time. I was always hoping for top 10, to be able to go on tour with my friends. After that first time Phillip and I were in the bottom three, I felt like I needed it more desperately.

EW: After Wednesday, who did the four of you think was going to win?

Jeanine Mason: We had no idea. Towards the beginning we tried to play that guessing game but you can honestly never guess what America wants. The perfect example is Janette leaving. She’s like my big sister. I thought she was gonna win.

EW: You mentioned to [host Cat Deeley] that you’d had to work through injuries during the season. What happened?

Jeanine Mason: About a year ago, I had surgery to remove a tumor from my left elbow. I went through radiation treatment - the summer before my senior year, I spent every morning in the hospital. My elbow is much better now.

EW: Were you careful to never mention that you were in pain?

Jeanine Mason: I didn’t really talk about it because I didn’t want it to be what people thought about when they saw me. All of us were feeling pain.

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by Free Britney at . Comments

After a record-breaking 21.6 million votes, Jeanine Mason, at just 18 years old, took the win last night on So You Think You Can Dance, and the adorable Floridian could not be more surprised that she won title on the show's fifth season.

"It honestly feels like nothing right now. I just feel numb from head to toe. I know when it does hit me, I'll probably run around my apartment 5,000 times screaming at the top of my lungs. Other than that, I'm just so excited to be here," said Jeanine.

Caitlynn Lawson and Mitchell Kelly

"Someone asked me earlier if I ever had a feeling I would get eliminated and I said 'Every week!' Every week you think you're about to go home. I'm so happy that I didn't go home and that I got voted America's favorite dancer, which is ridiculous."

At 18, Jeanine Mason has a very bright, dancing future.

Executive producer Nigel Lythgoe was also pleasantly surprised: "I'm delighted, I love surprises, and I think it was a bit of a surprise tonight," he said.

Known for her versatile talent and bubbly personality, Jeanine Mason was chosen by fans as the So You Think You Can Dance winner over leggy talent Kayla Radomski, technical genius Brandon Bryant, and Broadway baby Evan Kasprzak.

As for her nearest competition, Brandon, Jeanine praised him, saying "He is amazing. Brandon [Bryant] is such a strong dancer. I grew so much because he took me up to a level that I never thought I could go to. He made me just live there."

"He was not willing to bring down his strengths for me," she said of Brandon, who she calls more talented. "He's like, 'Jeanine, you're going to meet me there.' He's my Miami buddy, and we went up thinking, either way, it's a win for Miami."

Next up for the So You Think You Can Dance competitors comes a 40-city tour. After that, the top four are packing their bags and heading for L.A., except for Evan, who thinks Broadway could be in his future. Congrats to Jeanine et al!

Jeanine Mason Biography

Jeanine Mason won the fifth season of So You Think You Can Dance in August 2009. The fun Floridian was not a front-runner from the start... More »
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