SYTYCD: Welcome to the top TWENTY! Sammi T’s recap

June 4, 2009 at 6:17 pm | Posted in ballroom dance, So You Think You Can Dance, Uncategorized | Leave a comment
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Hello, and welcome to So You Think You Can Dance: The Top Twenty Revealed! Tonight twenty dancers will have their dreams come true as they get the chance to compete for a monetary prize and the title of America’s Favorite Dancer.

Nigel, Mary, Lil’ C., Tyce Diorio, Mia Michaels and Debbie Allen are the judges to make the final decision.

The first dancer to be told she is in the top twenty is Janette, the dancer from Miami. She says this is the good news she needed after a string of bad luck.

Diana Barden, who brought her stuffed monkey for luck, finds out that she is not in the top twenty, but is told to improve and come back next year.

Vitolio is also on his way to the top twenty, although he is told to bring out more of his personality. He tearfully shares his news with people backstage.

After a montage of people being rejected and getting hugs and kisses backstage from Cat and other dancers, Kayla (the girl who came with her grandparents) finds out that she is in the top twenty, after getting a beautiful speech from Mia. I think she is this season’s Courtney.

Kupono is also in the top twenty, along with Paris, Jeanine, Ada, Karla and Jonathan.

Brandon is told he is fabulous by Mary (although Lil’ C. and Mia disagree) and that he is going into the top twenty.

Tony, who has a brother in Afghanistan fighting for our country, (which I thank him for) is also in the top twenty, although Nigel wants to see more from him.

Maksim is also in the top twenty, along with Caitlyn, Melissa, Jason and Ashley.

Randi is in the top twenty as well, but Alex is cut due to his contract with the Miami Ballet Company. (Although he is told to come back when his contract expires.)

After more dancers are cut (this always kills me to see them cry, I feel so bad and could only imagine how hard they all worked.)

The next dancer to be told he will be in the top twenty is Phillip, who is shocked by how far he has come.

The last two girls standing are Deanna and Asuka. Debbie informs Asuka that she is in the top twenty, which means Deanna will be going home.

The last two dancers standing are brothers Ryan and Evan. Nigel says that it is Ryan’s choreography that got Evan into the top twenty. Nigel tells Ryan to come back next year. I was really hoping they would just make a top twenty-one because I loved them both, but it is what it is.

Congratulations to the top twenty! Goodnight America!

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Dancing with the Stars 8: Double Trouble?

April 20, 2009 at 8:38 pm | Posted in ballroom dance, Dancing with the Stars, Uncategorized | Leave a comment
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Hey Everyone,

Welcome to Tink’s recap! We’ve got a lot of ground to cover with 7 individual dances and the group dance in just an hour and a half, so let’s get right to it!

First up are Melissa and Tony with an Argentine Tango. During their practice session, they visit Wisteria Lane to help Melissa get in touch with her inner maneater. It sure looks like it worked, because that was one HOT Argentine Tango. Tony choreographed a brilliant, intricate routine, full of lifts (which are legal in this dance style) and fancy footwork. Both halves of the couple have to really trust each other with those close quarters kicks and steps. Len points out a minor flub, one so minor that I didn’t catch it, but both Carrie Ann and Bruno heap praise on the duo. Judges scores: 10,9,10.

Next tonight are Lawrence and Edyta, dancing the waltz. In their practice footage, he takes her to a golf tournament for his charity and tries to teach her how to hit a golf ball. He says it is much like how he feels every week when she is trying to teach him a new dance. Their routine wasn’t bad, but it wasn’t the best. He seemed heavy on his feet, and there were a lot of mistakes and missed connections. Judges scores: 7,7,7. It should be noted that while Lawrence did design a very pretty dress for Edyta, it was obvious that it was difficult for her to move in, as she got tangled up in the float at one point, and caught in the hem of the dress at another.

Dancing third are Lil Kim and Derek, and they will perform a rumba. During their rehearsal footage, Derek is stressed about the choreography, trying to create a balance that will work for them. He doesn’t want to be too raunchy, but the rumba is a romantic dance. Sounds like he was VERY aware of the ripple in the fan community over Julianne and Chuck’s dance last week. I really enjoyed their performance, and found they had some beautiful tricks. Kim has really nice lines, and follows through with her extensions quite well. Judges scores: 9,8,9.

Julianne and Chuck are next dancing the samba. I’m still trying to wipe last week’s rumba from my brain, and not in a good way. Chuck has a concert this week and talks to his fans and asks them to vote for him. Julianne is hard on him in terms of what his footwork should look like during the rehearsals. They did a credible samba, but I still think Julianne is choreographing around Chuck instead of for him. I must have missed something, because the judges scored them 9,9,9.

Ty and Chelsie are dancing the waltz tonight. During the practice footage, Jewel comes in and helps them find their connection, and encourages them to keep it real, and not try and turn it into something it isn’t. It worked, and this was a beautiful, lyrical waltz. Chelsie really seems to have a way about her of doing choreography that shows Ty off, and compliments his natural gifts without seeming showy. Judges scores: 8,8,8.

Shawn and Mark will dance the cha cha for us tonight. Shawn is under a lot of pressure this week, she has two awards she has to travel to accept, and misses the group dance practice entirely. They learn most of their cha cha on the road, and Mark expresses worry that she is overtired and isn’t picking the steps up as quickly. Well, from their dance quality tonight, I’d say that their footage was edited for maximum drama, because that was an awesome dance! Shawn has such clear, precise steps, and great quality to her movement. I think this is where her training as a gymnast helps her most, because she is so aware of her own body and how to allow it to move in the way it needs to. Judges scores: 9,9,10.

Last to dance individually tonight are Gilles and Cheryl, with a Viennese Waltz. Whoo hoo! Gilles in swim trunks during the practice footage, without it even feeling contrived! Seriously, Cheryl got him in the pool to feel the fluidity of the movements, because he was having a hard time with the constant flow of the dance in the studio. It really seems to have helped, because that was a very graceful, lyrical Viennese Waltz. Judges scores: 9,9,9.

To round out the night, we have a 60s themed group dance, choreographed by Christian Perry. The practice footage was really fun, and I think we are in for a treat. Has anyone else noticed the big grin that Tony Dovolani can’t seem to wipe off his face this season? It is a beautiful thing to see! He and Melissa and Lil Kim and Derek look like they are having the most fun. Only Lawrence Taylor looks like he’d rather not be doing this. What a shame, because this group dance is all about letting loose and having some time to play! What a routine! I can’t begin to describe it, so I hunted it down on YouTube so you don’t have to!

Dancing with the Stars 8: Week 6 Recap from WriterMarie426

April 13, 2009 at 7:05 pm | Posted in ballroom dance, Dancing with the Stars, So You Think You Can Dance, Uncategorized | 2 Comments
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Hey Everyone,

Our wonderful new friend WriterMarie426 has written another awesome recap for us tonight! She’s giving you her East Coast thoughts now, and I’ll be back with a West Coast recap in a couple of hours. We hope you’ll enjoy both recaps. Without further interruption, here’s Marie!

Good evening everyone, and welcome to Dancing With The Stars Week 6. We are at the halfway point of the competition with only 8 couples left. Our stars and their partners are dancing either the fast, fun and energetic Jive or the smooth, sensual Rumba. All of our dancers are smiling as they make their way down the stairs, ready to show off their moves after a long week of practice.

First up tonight we have Ty and Chelsie doing the Jive. Ty gets stressed during practice, saying he knows that when he is trying so hard to remember all of the steps his dancing starts looking mechanical. Chelsie brings in a couple of props to help him loosen up…a hula hoop and a mini-trampoline. They begin their Jive with some country line dancing type moves, and their dance looks a bit sloppy at first. Partway through the number their Jive kicks into full gear.

Len says Ty is charming but looks bewildered, and that even though it took them a while to get going, he knows that Ty is giving it his all. Bruno says their Jive was like a wild animal…the timing was rough and the steps were wrong. Carrie Ann thinks it was an exciting Jive, but they never quite found their footing.

Score: 18 (6,6,6)

Our first Rumba of the night comes from Shawn and Mark. Shawn is nervous yet excited during rehearsal, and feeling a bit self-conscious while trying to create a romantic Rumba at age 17. Since Shawn will most likely miss her own prom, Mark completely recreates prom at practice for her, which helps her get into the right frame of mind for her Rumba character. Their Rumba is sweet yet sensual, and they keep that mood throughout the dance with great splits and beautiful arm movements. They receive the first of several standing ovations for the night.

Bruno says the dance was angelic and pure, but with a hint of the devil thrown in. He would have liked a little more hip action. Carrie Ann believes she saw a little bit of discomfort from Shawn at the beginning, but then the Rumba came to life. Len thinks their dance is just right, not too tame but also not too hot.

Mark tells Samantha backstage that when he choreographed this Rumba he tried to keep it age appropriate for Shawn.

Score: 26 (8,9,9)

Tom says that keeping things age appropriate for Len gives the show a lot of room to work with.

Next we have Lawrence and Edyta performing the Jive. LT gets very frustrated during practice trying to learn all of the steps, which then makes it harder for Edyta to get him to smile and have fun with the dance. They get a visit from LT’s friend and former DWTS competitor Warren Sapp, who gives him a football-like pep talk to help. Lawrence states that he has nothing to lose and will just go out and have fun with it. They perform a really fun Jive, with a lot of great leg action and good timing.

Carrie Ann thinks they did a great job and that LT brought his groove back. Len likes that there were a lot of basic movements and that Lawrence showed his lighter side. Bruno says it was alive and kicky and their best performance to date.

Score: 22 (7,7,8)

Dancing our next Rumba are Melissa and Tony. Melissa was kind of disappointed with her Paso Doble from the week before, so Tony really works on getting her into her Rumba character. Melissa feels that this dance is coming together easier than the Paso did, and she is ready to make a comeback. They perform a very romantic, sexy Rumba, with plenty of intensity and dramatic movements.

Len likes the interesting choreography and says it was clean and precise, but would like to see it be a little less balletic and more earthy. Bruno comments that Melissa has a fabulous body and that she bends into shape easily, and that she just needs to go for it more. Carrie Ann loves the emotional quality, but would like them to work on sustaining their movements.

Score: 27 (9,9,9)

Next we have Lil’Kim and Derek dancing their Jive. Kim is really pleased with the chemistry she has with Derek, and he works on getting her ro make her arm movements bigger. During rehearsal he takes Kim to a Car Hop for burgers and shakes, where they check out the classic cars and Kim gets into the 50’s mood she needs for the Jive. They dance to “Jailhouse Rock”, quite appropriate for Kim as a shout out to her former prison mates…only in this scenario Kim is the warden and Derek is the prisoner. They keep their characters well, adding some Elvis moves and tons of energy.

Bruno says he would like for Kim to “arrest” him…and the routine rocked. Carrie Ann jumps up from her chair and screams, praising the fantastic choreography and calling the dance “mind-blowing”. Len likes the fun and energy, but thinks that it was too theatrical and lacked jive.

Score: 28 (10,8,10)

Tom, seeing the major discrepancy in Len’s score, says he hopes there aren’t any markdowns that big on Len’s tax return.

Steve-O and Lacey come out for their Rumba. During practice Lacey tells Steve this is a dance of love, so he says he will give his fans all the love he’s got. Steve remarks that it’s hard to find that romantic connection with Lacey, since they are more like brother and sister. Lacey brings in Steve’s dog, so he can think about that feeling of love he needs to bring out for the dance. They perform a pretty good Rumba, a little choppy at times but with plenty of passion.

Carrie Ann says there is something oddly mesmerizing about their dance, and that Steve showed his honesty and vulnerability. Len states that there was no hip action, no footwork, and it was no good. Bruno thinks Lacey is hot and Steve has a puppy-like charm, but the dancing is bad.

Score: 16 (7,4,5)

Tom remarks that these are the most inconsistent numbers he’s seen since the bailout talks.

Gilles and Cheryl are up next with the Jive. Cheryl tells Gilles during practice that instead of being the sexy Gilles, this week he has to be the fun Gilles. He starts getting tense because there are so many steps to learn, so they go out to play soccer, which is one of his great passions. Cheryl tells Gilles to relate the kicking in soccer to the kicks in the Jive. Their Jive is fast and energetic, with great leg pumping action. They keep the Jive sexy while making it fun.

Len says there were a lot of good qualities, but that it was too frantic and wild. He also says he saw a mistake. Bruno also notices the mistake and thinks they need to keep it sharp, but it was fast and furious with Gilles giving 110%. Carrie Ann agrees with Len and Bruno, but says it was a good performance, with Gilles showing he can be more than just sexy. She also comments on wanting to seeing bigger arm movements. Gilles replies that the arms were a little difficult this week due to his shoulder injury.

Score 26 (9,8,9)

Chuck and Julianne are our last couple of the night, performing the Rumba. Julianne wants him to show his confidence, while Chuck worries about messing up because they are a real life couple. He doesn’t want to hear any comments about lack of chemistry. He has a hard time taking criticism from Julianne, so she takes him to the Santa Monica Pier, where they had their first date. They dance on ther pier, with Chuck remembering back to that night. Their Rumba is extremely sexy and intense with beautiful movements.

Bruno says he would like to see more of that, and even though the technique was not perfect and they need to be more precise it was a step in the right direction. Carrie Ann would like them to work more on their technique,but likes the passion in their dance. Len thinks it was more suitable for the bedroom than the ballroom, and it was too raunchy for him.

As Chuck and Julianne head backstage to wait for their scores, Tom reminds everyone that the group dance is coming up next week.

Score: 23 (8,7,8)

The evening ends with the dance recap and reminder to vote. Tom also announces that Rascal Flatts will perform on tomorrow night’s results show. Good night everybody, and tune in tomorrow to see which couple goes home!

Learn the Tango – Now Available to go!

March 24, 2009 at 10:32 am | Posted in ballroom dance, Dancing with the Stars, Uncategorized | 1 Comment
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Hey Everyone,

We have some great news we’d like to share with you. Our tango basic step is now in the ITunes App Store. Here’s a preview of the dance, as taught by our world class instructors, Nick & Lena Kosovich.

Learn to dance like the professionals! The Ballroom Dance Channel has assembled some of the world’s best dancers to teach you the Tango! Learn from the comfort of your home! Take a private lesson from professional dancers Nick and Lena Kosovich!Enjoy this teaser trailer and then visit ballroomdancechannel.com for a full lesson!

Vodpod videos no longer available.

more about "Learn the Tango – www.ballroomdancech…", posted with vodpod

DWTS The Results!

March 17, 2009 at 7:14 pm | Posted in ballroom dance, Dancing with the Stars, Uncategorized | Leave a comment
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Good evening Dancing With The Stars fans and welcome to the first results show of the season. The eliminated team will be determined by a dance off. so without further ado, here we are–LIVE!

MUSICAL GUEST AND PRO DANCE 1

The show opens with the Big Bad Voodoo Daddies perform with Lacey, Cheryl, Julianne, Derek, Mark and Tony dancing. The dancing is fun and the music is just fun and catchy. I love it!

UPDATE ON STEVE-O

Steve-O gives an update about his injury. He says nothing is broken and he plans on staying in the competition to make it up to Lacey–and this time listen to her!

RESULTS PART 1

After a recap of scores and dances, we get to some results. The first four couples who are safe are Lawrence and Edyta, Shawn and Mark, Chuck and Julianne and David and Kym.

After a segment about the new set and some commercials, we learn that Denise and Maks, Melissa and Tony, Lil’ Kim and Derek and Gilles and Cheryl will also be dancing another week.

Cameron Mathison gives us a segment about surviving the show. He says not to trip, always make friends in the red room (he tries to psych Shawn out there) make sure to cry in the elimination room, and always kiss up to the judges. Spray tanning is also on his list to survive. Also to avoid injury, don’t do the show.

MACY’S STARS OF DANCE

Macy’s Stars of Dance features some very showy and fun dancers. What I like about the performance is that it not only features people we don’t normally see, but also introduces us to some new styles of dance.

MUSICAL GUEST JEWEL

Jewel sings her cover of Somewhere Over The Rainbow from her new album Lullaby. Dmitry Chaplin and Chelsie Hightower dance a sensual rumba and for some reason Chelsie has no shoes on. I love the lifts they do and they seem to have good chemistry.

Tom reveals that the quickstep was picked for design a dance.

WHAT THE COMPETITORS SAY

The contestants talk about their competition and actually have nothing but good things to say about each other. I love Shawn’s reaction about Gilles (HOT!) Belinda thinks its funny she is competing against Shawn, who is the same age as her son. It is so nice to see everyone be so positive toward each other without giving up their competitive edge. Steve W. says he turned down the Naked Man role! HA!

MORE RESULTS

Holly and Dmitry, Ty and Chelsie and Steve-O and Lacey are safe, leaving Belinda and Jonathan and Steve and Karina in the dance off.

DANCE OFF
Each couple will re-dance their favorite dance and be judged on it. Their scores will be combined with their original scores to give them each a new total.

Belinda and Jonathan re-do their salsa. I love how she always sings along as she dances. She does a pretty good job, but still seems a bit nervous out there. However, she seems like she is having SO much fun.

Len tells her she has more hip action, but there are still some mistakes.

Bruno agrees, saying she lost a lot of her footwork.

Carrie Ann thinks her performance level was much better but she lost it in the middle of the routine.

Score: 17 (5,6,6)

Steve and Karina reprise their quickstep. I have to admire him for trying so hard. He seems to do a better job tonight and his spirit is contagious!

Bruno says he admires him.

Carrie Ann thinks he improved but lost it in the middle.

Len thinks he improved as well but not a lot.

Score: 17 (6,5,6) Hahaha, Bruno had his paddle backwards!

AND THE COUPLE WITH THE LOWEST COMBINED SCORES AND THEREFORE GOING HOME RIGHT NOW……

Belinda and Jonathan are going home. She says she had a lot of fun and Jonathan is a great teacher. Jonathan is going to miss her fun attitude and hopes to see more hip action at her next concert.

As they take the floor for their last dance, everyone comes out to give them hugs and kisses.

Join us next week for our couples to take the stage with either a samba or foxtrot. Goodnight everybody!

Dancing with the Stars 8: Has Holly Madison had prior ballroom training?

March 11, 2009 at 7:50 pm | Posted in ballroom dance, Dancing with the Stars, So You Think You Can Dance, Uncategorized | 1 Comment
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Hmmmm….according to the following article I found at Trans World News, it appears that Holly Madison has had some prior ballroom training, although there are no real details given about what type. Normally I would be screaming that prior training of this type is an unfair advantage, but I think the serious deficit in training time more than makes up for any advantage a prior class would give her! Stay tuned to Ballroom Dance Channel for all the best news on Dancing with the Stars!

Atlanta, GA 3/11/2009 02:58 PM GMT (TransWorldNews)

Hugh Hefner and Holly Madison might have ended their relationship, but the Playboy mogul is still rooting for his former girlfriend as she competes on Dancing with the Stars.

Hefner says he is the one who revealed to Madison that she had been chosen to replace country singer Jewel, who had to drop out of the competition because of an injury. “I called her and gave her the news on Monday. She had a week to prepare, less than a week,” he tells People magazine.

Hefner says he thinks Madison did a “spectacular job” with her performance on Monday’s premiere. “I’m very, very proud of her,” he added.

Also rooting for Madison is her Girls Next Door co-stars Bridget Marquardt and Kendra Wilkinson.

“I think that fact that she’s had ballroom dancing classes before and was a cheerleader in high school, I think that will bring a lot to the table. I know she has tenacity. I know she’ll stick with it and give it her all,” says Marquardt.

“I think people get on her and think she doesn’t know how to dance – but hip hop dances she needs to work on, but ballroom dancing she’s great at, she has great feet,” Wilkinson added.

Well, what do you think? Tell us in the comments below!

Keep Dancing,
Ballroom Dance Channel

Dancing with the Stars 8: Who will join the first to go home club?

March 11, 2009 at 7:26 am | Posted in ballroom dance, Dancing with the Stars, Uncategorized | Leave a comment
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Thanks to Condrun.us for picking up our blog!

Dancing with the Stars 8: Season Premiere

March 9, 2009 at 9:00 pm | Posted in ballroom dance, Dancing with the Stars, So You Think You Can Dance, Uncategorized | 2 Comments
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Hi everyone,

Welcome to the season premiere of Dancing with the Stars! If you want to cha cha and waltz like the stars you’ve seen tonight, please visit us at Ballroom Dance Channel. With our All Access Pass, you can learn as many dances as you’d like at your own pace, for under $10 a month! If you want to take our lessons on the go, please visit us at the ITunes App Store . Now, on with the show!

Wow! The makeover for the ballroom is simply stunning! The new staircases are so pretty, and I hear that they added about 200 more seats. Hopefully this will mean more of the fans of the show that wait for hours to see if they will get in will be able to attend the show tapings!

Our first couple tonight is Lil Kim and Derek Hough. They are dancing the cha cha this evening, and next week will dance the quickstep. Kim looks like she can move quite well, but when they are doing their dance, she seems choppy to me, moving from segment to segment with no fluidity and grace. Maybe I’m just spoiled from seeing Derek with last season’s champion, Brooke Burke, who had a natural, flowing grace from week one! Judges Scores: 7,7,7.

Dancing second tonight are Belinda Carlisle and Jonathan Roberts. I missed Jonathan last season much more than I thought I would, but I am very happy for him that he went back and competed and won a title with new partner Valentina! Belinda has a hard time with spins the same way that Kelly Monaco did in season 1, but she seems to be powering through it nicely in the beginning of their Viennese waltz. She needs to relax and let Jonathan lead her, she is far too stiff and choppy, she really needs to finish her extensions. Maybe next week’s salsa will be more her style! Judges Scores: 6,6,5.

Our third couple is Lawrence Taylor and Edyta Sliwinska. He’s dressed like Emmitt Smith, but I don’t get the same warmth or sincerity from him that Emmitt gives. I also wasn’t real fond of his trash talking Jason Taylor, who I still have a soft spot for! He does a credible job tonight, but needs more finesse and polish to break out from the crowd. Edyta carried him throughout the dance, showing him off as only she knows how! Judges scores: 6,5,5. Step it up, LT, Edyta deserves a better partner!

Next up is the duo of Steve O and Lacey Schwimmer. This pairing initially troubled me greatly. Lacey is one of my favorite pros, and Steve O didn’t have the world’s best reputation, so I was worried. Since the couples have been announced, I’ve been reading about their practices, and Steve’s work ethic impresses me. They are dancing the waltz tonight. I love Lacey’s costume! Steve is a bit too stiff, like he is overly concerned with his frame, but he does a very credible job, and I have to say he actually has very nice lines. I don’t know that he’s headed for the finals, but I have no objection to him being on the dance floor for the next several weeks. Judges scores: 6,5,6.

Ooh, is it hot in here? Gilles Marini and Cheryl Burke are dancing next, a cha cha tonight, if you please. WOW! Gilles has some really nice lines tonight. I’m impressed, and he seems to be funny and charming, as well. Cheryl looks beautiful, her hair is beautiful at that length. I think this couple is going to be in it for quite some time, they have all the right elements! Judges scores: 8,8,8.

Sigh. Chuck Wicks and Julianne Hough are up. Oh, and they are dressed like they belong on the top of a wedding cake. I’m not thrilled about this pairing, and haven’t been since they announced it. I don’t think it is right to allow a real life pairing to compete together on this show, because if nothing else, they have a built in chemistry that the other couples cannot draw from. I’ll try and focus just on their dancing, I promise. Chuck seems to be a very capable lead, and Julianne has choreographed a routine that clearly plays to that strength, but I have seen a couple of missteps, and there was a very obvious lift at the end of the number. Let’s see if the lift police bust them for it! Judges Scores: 6,7,7.

Holly Madison is stepping in to replace Jewel with Dmitry Chaplin. Right off the bat, I have to give Holly props and stepping up on such short notice. Holly has had 5 days of training, and really put her all into the routine. It really is a testament to what a good teacher Dmitry is that Holly did so well with so little training. Next week they will have the quickstep, and she will have had some more time to learn what she needs to continue in the competition. Judges scores: 6,6,6.

After Holly and Dmitry dance, we learn that Ballroom Dance Channel’s own Tony Dovolani will be paired with Melissa Rycroft, who has stepped in on 48 hours notice! Following this announcement, we meet our next couple, Ty Murray and Chelsie Hightower. Ty is a rodeo champion, and Chelsie will look very familiar to fans of So You Think You Can Dance. They have the cha cha tonight. Ty’s a real cutie, and he tried very hard, but he isn’t a natural dancer, and it showed. I think he’ll be more comfortable in the smooth quickstep next week. Chelsie gave it her all, and I hope America remembers why they loved her so much last summer and supports this couple with their votes. Judges scores: 5,4,5. Ty, stop being so hard on yourself, and I hope America stands behind you!

Shawn Johnston and Mark Ballas are up next, and they also have the Viennese Waltz this week. Wow, Mark looks so TALL! I’ve read a lot of places where Shawn is picked to be the winner this year. I think technically she will be superb, but she will struggle with her emotion just like Kristi Yamaguchi did. She said it in their practice footage, that in sport, emotion is weakness. Shawn and Mark are a stunning couple on the floor, and she is doing a lovely job of showing emotion tonight, and with such a romantic dance, they played it well without going over the top. Judges scores: 8,8,7.

Next are Steve “IWoz” Wozniak and Karina Smirnoff. I’m looking forward to seeing how IWoz can do. He seems like such a big teddy bear of a man who really wants to learn and do this well. I’ve developed a soft spot for him the more I have read about him, and I hope he has some ability to go with that infectious smile. I can imagine that this must be very hard for an analytical mind like his! I think he did a credible job, but he has some work to do in order to stay in the competition. Judges scores: 5,4,4. Like Ty, I think the Woz will have strength in the smooth dances.

David Alan Grier and Kym Johnson is our next couple to dance the Viennese Waltz. David seems to be one of those people that everyone is going to assume is just a big goof, but will be very good. He’s taking this very seriously, as are all the competitors this season. David has beautiful extensions, and naturally flows from movement to movement with grace and style. Judges scores: 6,7,6.

Denise Richards and Maksim Chmerkovskiy are dancing the cha cha tonight. Denise is coming into the competition with no formal dance training. I wasn’t sure what to make of her when she called Maks “Maksipoo” on Good Morning America, but she’s growing on me, because she isn’t afraid to be real. WOW! Denise has some real potential, but Maks is right, she’s got to stop apologizing, and just start learning. I think she’ll get there, she just has to trust herself a little more. It is clear she trusts Maks, she just needs to believe in herself a little more. Judges scores: 6,6,6. Not bad!

Last, but not least, are Melissa Rycroft and Tony Dovolani. Come on, boss, show us what you’ve got! This is a real test to who Tony is as an instructor, but at least they have found a capable woman to step in at the very last minute. Melissa has trained in ballet and is a former Dallas Cowboys cheerleader. I’m thinking that means she’ll have the grace to pull off the smooth dances, and the cheekiness needed for the Latins. One thing is for sure, this couple looks beautiful together! They are a good physical match with the height and coloring. 2 DAYS! 2 DAYS, and that was hands down the performance of the night! She was all teary at the end, and so am I. Melissa has beautiful lines, amazing extensions, and unlimited potential. Judges scores: 8,7,8. Good job, you two, and Melissa, thank you so much for stepping in!

Well, that’s it for tonight. We will see you back here next Monday for the second round of competition, and a week from tomorrow for our first results show, which will feature Jewel as our guest singer. Thanks for reading!

Keep Dancing,
Ballroom Dance Channel

Dancing with the Stars 8: Steve “The Woz” Wozniak and Karina Smirnoff

February 27, 2009 at 9:55 am | Posted in ballroom dance, Dancing with the Stars, Uncategorized | Leave a comment
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Hey Everyone,

We’re wrapping up the week’s couple previews with the duo of Steve Wozniak and Karina Smirnoff. We hope you are enjoying these ongoing previews. For a dance fix while we wait for the new season to begin, why not head over to Ballroom Dance Channel? With our new all access pass, you can try all of our dances with a well known roster of instructors for under $10 a month. That’s cheaper than dinner and a movie, and it could be a whole month of dates with your sweetie or a good time with some friends! Enjoy today’s profile, we’ll wrap up the series next week.


Stephen Gary “Woz” Wozniak is an American computer engineer who founded Apple Computer (now Apple Inc.) with Steve Jobs. His inventions and machines are credited with contributing significantly to the personal computer revolution of the 1970s. Wozniak created the Apple I and Apple II computers in the mid-1970s. The Apple II gained much popularity, becoming one of the best selling personal computers of the 1970s and early 1980s. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Steve_Wozniak

Did you know?

-Steve has many nicknames, including “The Woz”, “Wonderful Wizard of Woz”, and “IWoz”.
-Steve dated Kathy Griffin, and they remain close friends.
-He quit working at Hewlett Packard to form Apple with Steve Jobs.
-Steve graduated from college under the alias Rocky Clark.

Karina Smirnoff (Ukrainian: Карина Смирнова) is a world champion professional dancer from Kharkiv, Ukraine. She has appeared on Dancing with the Stars seasons 3 through 8. Her partners include Mario Lopez, Billy Ray Cyrus, and R&B singer Mario.

Did you know?

-Karina is a five-time U.S. National Champion, World Trophy Champion, and Asian Open Champion.
-She is the first woman to make the British Professional Final with three different partners.
-Karina became a U.S. citizen in 1992.
-She graduated from Fordham University with a double major in economics and information system programming.

Dancing with the Stars 8: Ty Murray and Chelsie Hightower

February 26, 2009 at 8:15 am | Posted in ballroom dance, Dancing with the Stars, So You Think You Can Dance | 1 Comment
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Hey Everyone,

We’re back with another couple profile for you today. This time it is Ty Murray and Chelsie Hightower. We hope you’ll learn something new about this pair today, and that they will inspire you to take lessons yourself. At Ballroom Dance Channel, we have professional lessons at an affordable price, and you can take them in the comfort of your own home. With our new All Access Pass, you can try all of our quality lessons for under $10 a month. That’s cheaper than a movie ticket in most areas, and you could get more quality time with your date! Enjoy this look at Ty and Chelsie, we’ll be back tomorrow with another profile.


Ty Murray is one of the most accomplished rodeo athletes in the sport’s history. His nickname is “King of the Cowboys.” Since he was in the fifth grade, his goal was to beat Larry Mahan’s record. In 1990, Sports Illustrated said that “At age 21, Ty Murray is the best danged rodeo cowboy of ‘em all.”

After achieving his childhood dream, Murray shifted his focus to riding bulls in the PBR. He won the 1999 PBR Finals and finished as the reserve PBR Bud Light Cup World Champion the next three years. In July 2004, he personally took the reins as president of the PBR, steering the organization to even greater mainstream popularity.

He is married to singer Jewel.

Fun Facts:

Events: Bareback Riding, Saddle Bronc Riding, Bull Riding
College: Odessa College, TX
Special Interests: Roping, Ranch Work
Career Earnings: More than $3 million, combined PRCA and PBR
PRCA Membership: 1988
PBR Membership: 1993 NFR Qualifications: 8: 1989-94, ’98-’99
World Titles: 9: 1989-94, ’98 All-Around; ’93, ’98 Bull Riding

Chelsie Hightower was born July 21, 1989 in Las Vegas, Nevada, but was raised in Ortem, Utah. She began dancing and nine and by the time she was fourteen was working with world renowned dancers. She was a US World finalist in 2005 and competed on Team USA. She went on to compete on So You Think You Can Dance and was eliminated one week shy of the finals.

DID YOU KNOW?

• Chelsie was one of six dancers to never be in the bottom two on SYTYCD
• Some of her past trainers include Corky and Shirley Ballas, Jonathan Wilkins and Katusha Demidova, Karina Sminoff, Paul Green, Vibeka Taus, Goran Nordin and Louis VanAmstel
• Was an international finalist in 2006 at the age on seventeen
• Was ranked as one of the top three couples in the country
• She loves the dancing in Girls Just Want To Have Fun

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