November 20, 2012 at 12:55 pm , by Ladies' Lounge
I can’t believe we’re already in the semi-finals. We only have one more week left until we crown our Dancing with the Stars: All-Stars season 15 champion! It’s been quite a battle for everyone who’s still in the game and all of the competitors deserve recognition for their hard work. Getting this far was no easy task and it will be a big (and probably quite emotional) double elimination tonight. I’m quite certain that no one had any idea how competitive this season would be, or for that matter, how challenging. It’s been quite a unique experience for all of us. We’ve done things never seen before in the history of our show and that’s been quite a treat.
The dancers and choreographers did outstanding work this season. No one knew they would be choreographing Big Top Jazz, Knight Rider Bhangra, Surfing Flamenco, Espionage Lindy Hop or Caveman Hustle. (Some of those categories are quite puzzling, wouldn’t you say?) It’s been a whacky, unpredictable and entertaining season. Our producers really pushed the envelope this season with new challenges and we owe them a round of applause for really thinking creatively and outside the box. I think our production value has increased over the seasons and I’d like to acknowledge our incredible crew. They are such a wonderful group of top-notch quality professionals and it’s a joy and an honor to work with them all. I’ve worked with some of these camera operators, electricians, audio techs and stage managers for over 18 years, on various shows that I’ve choreographed or danced on, and I’ll tell you without any doubt, we have some of the industry’s finest working on our show.
But on to tonight’s performances…in my opinion, the best numbers of the night were Shawn and Derek’s Knight Rider Bhangra, Apollo and Karina’s Rumba, and Melissa and Tony’s Argentine Tango. And all three judges agreed on those performances! They were all so completely different but attained perfection in their own right. I’m hearing a lot of rumblings on twitter about how certain couples were “robbed” and that usually happens around this time. We get a lot of social media posts where people rant and rave about the unfairness of it all and sometimes it makes no sense. The reasoning behind their rants are often incoherent but I will give them credit for being such loyal fans. The fans of our show are fiercely passionate about who they are rooting for and I appreciate it. I don’t always appreciate the crazy name-calling and threatening language, but I appreciate the passion, because that’s what keeps our show so popular.
I think Kelly and Val had the most challenging combination for the first round. Surfer Flamenco really just didn’t seem to go together. Surfing is happy, light and upbeat. Flamenco is a proud dance of storytelling and passion and the movements are very specific. Sure, there are certain variations with the style of Flamenco dancing but overall, everyone is familiar with it because there are elements of it in the Paso Doble, a dance we all know pretty well after 15 seasons. But the Paso and Flamenco are not the same dance. I give them creative credit for doing the dance in the water at the end, but I think it was what hindered them from executing the Flamenco movements in the long run. I’m sad that it didn’t come together the way they’d hoped, but that’s what competition is all about. Luck plays a large role—right next to hard work and diligence. They did a fantastic Rumba and I think the audience loved seeing them finally come together as a couple in the dance of love. It was like a fairy tale ending to a romance that everyone has watched throughout the season. I don’t know if they are really a couple…I don’t get involved in their personal lives. But there’s no denying the incredible chemistry they share and the magic they create on the dance floor. They may be at the bottom of the leader board with Emmitt and Cheryl, but not by much, and one never knows what will happen when we mix in the audience vote.
I wish everyone good luck tomorrow night and I also want to send out a prayer to the late, great Michael Jackson for bringing us such incredible music and inspiration over the years. He really had a powerful influence on my generation of dancers and choreographers and he continues to inspire us with his music and iconic moves. RIP Michael Jackson, you continue to live on in our heart of hearts.
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