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DWTS 16, Week 5 – Power Rankings

Well, side-by-side challenge night went about as well as can be expected when you put complete amateurs (well, and a ringer or two…) next to seasoned pros with years of experience under their belts.  If nothing else, it let us see some sorely missed pros doing what they do best :-) The judges have made it pretty clear at this point who their favorites are (ZENDAYA, Kellie, Jacoby, & Aly), who they are lukewarm about (Sean & Ingo), and who is disposable (Victor, D.L., and unfortunately, now Andy), and seem to be scoring accordingly.  And dare I say that many of the pros came out dancing at full throttle…but noticeably slowed down and calmed down when the celebs joined them on the floor? No bueno.  And god bless Tom for soldiering through what had to be a tough night for Bostonians :-( Let’s get on with it…

1.) Zendaya & Val – It was a good dance, and I was actually impressed with Val’s first venture into Argentine tango choreography – and thankfully, he seemed to eschew the multitude of lifts big bro seems so fond of, and put in some good basic steps.  Zendaya handled pretty well, and I liked the jewel thief storyline – I was worried they were going to go more the smut route, which would have felt…icky. But this was appropriate :-) So that was the good – now here’s the bad: I don’t think it was 10-worthy.  Sorry kids.  Once again, I find myself just fixated on how BENT Zendaya’s legs are – yes, I am aware she is tall, and yes, Argentine tango is usually done with a flexed knee.  But girl was damn near SQUATTING – and consequently, it made her upper body look that much more flimsy when they were in hold.  I hate when tall people (male or female) try to compensate for a shorter dance partner – it almost always looks awkward, and you don’t get the full impact of their lines.  I say stand up straight and forget about who’s taller – the bf has 2 female students that have a good 3” on him in heels, and when they’re dancing to the full extent, it’s MAGICAL…their legs just go on forever.  You don’t even  worry about who’s taller, because the lines are so gorgeous.  So with that said – these two are obviously safe (and thankfully, there were no Twitter machinations this week to tip things in their favor), but I do think Zendaya’s legs will continue to be an issue in the coming weeks.

2.) Kellie & Derek – I’ve always loved Derek’s foxtrots, and the Broadway quality & character they have to them.  This was no exception – great side-by-side, playful choreography, and Kellie seemed to handle the sweeping motions of the foxtrot well.  She seemed to get a bit stiff in her neck and shoulders at a few times, which looked a bit awkward, but other than that, she handled this routine well and I liked watching her do it.  I think she probably came the closest to mirroring her pro counterpart tonight – and I think she has Derek to thank for not dumbing down the choreography, because in most of the routines, the pros went from dancing full-on, difficult steps to dancing simple, kindergarten steps without much energy.  It gave me whiplash, at times.  But the transition in this one felt seamless – the way Kellie was keeping up, it felt more like another pro couple joining Henry & Anna on the floor, rather than “Oh sh*t, here comes the celeb, better slow it down…NOW!” So even if Kellie “doesn’t like Derek’s ways” – I think it was those “ways” that probably helped her look so good tonight.  😉  Read more..

April 15, 2013 I Written By

Ultrasound sales specialist by day, semi-knowledgeable DWTS fan by night...with a smattering of hair & makeup enthusiast, occasional model, and crazy cat lady peppered in to make things REALLY interesting ;-) I might pee my pants in happiness if Donnie Wahlberg ever does DWTS - or if they ever use "Sunglasses at Night" as a paso doble. Check out some of my other work at pureamericasgottalent.com!

PureDWTS Questions For Dancer Emma Slater Needed For New Interview!!

Hey All!!! Dance Junkies TV will be interviewing troupe member Emma Slater tomorrow night (Wednesday). Like recently and in the past, feel free to ask her what you like in the comments section and then Stuart Brazell and the gang will try to get as many questions answered as they can. I’ll leave my questions in comments too as I want to ask her about the new members of the troupe. See you there!! 😉

Picture above courtesy of Zimbio Pictures.

March 19, 2013 I Written By

I'm a fashion and music fan....and I have always loved dancing too of any kind. Dancing With The Stars seems to have this way of bringing all of those things together. One of my favorite dancing quotes at the moment: "No matter what, nobody can take away the dance you've already had...." ~Gleb Savchenko . For fun music and dance mixes, visit WilUnleashed Soundcloud. To view my photography site, see Lisa Kay Photography.

DWTS16: Introducing our NEW TROUPE MEMBERS!

Well DWTSers, it looks like they’re expanding the Troupe this year, from 6 dancers to 8! Sharna was promoted out of the troupe this season, so we knew we would get at least one new pro troupe members. Instead, we get THREE!

First, ELENA SAMODANOVA… She comes to us from Australia’s DWTS, like Gleb, who is one of our new teaching pros.

Elena was born in a dance family so she started dancing before walking. Since her infant years Elena has always been on the dance floor dancing to all different styles of music..

During her youth Elena has won many Russian championships and awards in Latin American and Ballroom genres internationally.
Elena became a professional dancer at the tender age of 16 and she became the “World Youngest Professional Latin American Dancer” and soon after such, Elena was ranked the Top 20 dance couple in the world ranking in Latin American genre. Even since she has been performing, teaching and competing all over Europe and Asia.

The next decade marked further special achievements in Elena’s career in which she won many more international competitions and championships around the world. In 2009 she hit the Top 10 professional dancers in the World ranking of Latin American. Elena’s titles include being the Asian Professional Champion, Hong Kong Champion, Japanese Champion, Singaporean Champion and England Champion.

Elena has obtained her official certificate as a professional Latin American and Ballroom professional dance teacher and has the highest credentials and qualifications to teach in Russia, Hong Kong, England and Australia.
At this moment Elena Samodanova is the National Australian Professional Latin American Champion having won the 4 major dance titles down under and as a result she will now be representing Australian on the next World Dance Championship this November. This year Elena also makes her DANCING WITH THE STARS debut.

ADDING: What fun! I finally realized that I could possibly find more about our new troupe dancers on You Tube! Elena WAS on DWTS Australia, but my computer wasn’t cooperating with me to play any of those videos! However, I DID find one of her dancing the Paso with Gleb! And, since he’s a New Pro, and one we HAVEN’T seen dance yet, here’s our opportunity!
Elena and Gleb dancing Paso at a private function, 2009(ish)

Second, WITNEY CARSON… Witney competed this past summer on So You Think You Can Dance along side her friend Lindsay, who is now one of our new teaching pros.

Witney Carson was born and raised in American Fork, UT. Witney has been dancing since the age of 3; training, performing, and competing has been her life. Her specialty dance is Ballroom. She recently graduated from American Fork High School, and is ready to start her new adult life!

ADDING: A video from SYTYCD, which seems to be the first week of competition?? (I didn’t watch) She’s dancing Samba with her partner Chehon.
Witney and Chehon, “So You Think You Can Dance” 2012

Third, JULZ TOCKER…

Unfortunately, my search has come up scarce, and all I could find on Julz is what’s on his twitter bio, Dancing With The Stars season 16 cast member. International Ballroom and Latin American Champion, Dance Teacher/Coach, Model, Actor and a whole lot more people. That, and he has Gleb and Jason Gilikson on his facebook friends list.

ADDING: Julz was dancing in Australia on the show, “Everybody Dance Now 2012” which ran only one season, and was cancelled. I did find one video with him dancing with his partner Annalisa. He’s in the first 5 minutes of the video…
Julz and Annalisa, “Everybody Dance Now” Australia 2012

If you know or can find anything more on Elena, Witney or Julz, PLEASE let us know in the comments, with url or documentation, and we’ll add it and credit you. Unfortunately, all 3 are new to me.

Rounding out the troupe are returning members SASHA FARBER, EMMA SLATER, HENRY BYALIKOV, OKSANA DYMTRENKO, SONNY PEDERSEN.

ADDED: A couple videos from @ButterflyWhirl, thank you!

Witney, Lindsay and Nick doing a ballroom trio, SYTYCD 2012
Elena and her partner Shannon Noll, DWTS Australia 2012

March 15, 2013 I Written By

Just a typical, ordinary DWTS fan..

Sharna Burgess Talks Of Mood Behind The Scenes Before DWTS16 Cast Announcement And More

As most of you know, the cast announcement for Dancing With The Stars Season 16 is quickly approaching. Tuesday, February 26th, we will finally find out who is dancing on Good Morning America. Stay tuned as we plan to LIVE blog and tweet the event. In the meantime, Dancing With The Stars Sharna Burgess was generous enough to answer a few questions from us before the ‘calm hits the storm’ so to speak. She talks of what the mood is currently like for all the pros and how she’s preparing. She talks of the dancers goals and what she’s looking forward to. Sharna also answers a question on speculation for whether or not they know if a troupe member will be promoted. She answers some other fun questions too that you won’t want to miss reading. Enjoy and we thank Sharna so much for taking the time to answer all of our questions. Stay tuned as she is going to answer more questions AFTER the cast announcement as well. THANK YOU SHARNA and keeping fingers crossed!!xx

What’s the mood like surrounding you and all the pro dancers right now? I imagine it must be an anxious time and one full of anxiety?

I think everyone is anxiously waiting to hear what’s going to happen this season. Normally there are a bunch of rumors going around by now about celebs but there has really been nothing. They have totally kept the lid tight on it this time!! I’m excited to hear who will be with us for season 16, it’s always wonderful getting to know them and to be a part of their journey in the competition. I’m excited to see how this season tops All Star. We had amazing talent and went all-in on the production value of each number, extra sets, the troupe had additional dancers a lot and so much attention to lighting and detail. I loved that about season 15 so I’m hoping that 16 is the same. 

How are you preparing for the cast announcement and are you ready for the show to start?

Totally ready! Even though Read more..

February 20, 2013 I Written By

I'm a fashion and music fan....and I have always loved dancing too of any kind. Dancing With The Stars seems to have this way of bringing all of those things together. One of my favorite dancing quotes at the moment: "No matter what, nobody can take away the dance you've already had...." ~Gleb Savchenko . For fun music and dance mixes, visit WilUnleashed Soundcloud. To view my photography site, see Lisa Kay Photography.

Dancing with the Stars Season 16 – PRO WATCH!!

The post started getting long and confusing, so I decided to move the current standings up to the top of the page. There are supposedly 12 couples, so things can still get interesting. :-)

Current Standings:

Male Pros
Derek
Val
Tony
Mark
Gleb Savchenko
Tristan

Female Pros
Cheryl
Lindsay
Sharna
Peta??
Karina
Kym

Out For the Season
Chelsie
Anna
Maks (???)
Lacey
Louis

ETA: See Karina’s facebook and Lacey’s twitter for the source of my latest updates. Late on Saturday before the announcement and we still have some HOLES in our roster. Hmmmmm…
ETA2: DWTSGossip tells someone that Tristan is in, but doesn’t actually tweet it outright. Uncertain?

ETA3: Louis tweets that he’s not going to be on this season, which is not too big of a surprise.  An ambiguous tweet from @DWTSGossip makes us wonder if Maks really is out or not…and it appears as though Lizzie Grubman may have flown to LA yesterday.  Emma confirms she’s in the troupe again this season (and is not a pro), which leaves us wondering: who is this mysterious 12th pro??? 😯

ETA4: And the mysterious fourth pro appears to be Gleb?? It is very obnoxious of me to say this just cuz I’ve never heard of the guy…but is this a joke??

ETA5: And I must give props to Miss Sally for picking up on the suspicious “What a beautiful day!” comment Kym tweeted at 4:26 AM Sydney time – which is actually 9:26 AM Los Angeles time…because DWTSGossip is reporting Kym is IN as the last female pro 😎 Looks like Tristan has also been confirmed as the final male pro, which leaves Maks & Henry out in the cold.  Interesting…

Confirmed Sooper Troupers
Witney Carson (according to Grant’s source)
Sasha Farber
Emma Slater

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Read more..

February 17, 2013 I Written By

I'm a nerd and proud of it. Two degrees in geology also means I love BEER. :-) I'm also a Derek lover - proud of that too. So don't scream at those of us on this site and call us a bunch of "biased Derek-lovers" - it's just ME. :-) It may sound like I hate DWTS at times, but really, I'm just a snarky nitpicker from way back. And I'm cynical and jaded too. But I do love DWTS. :-)

PureDWTS 2013 Exclusive Interview With Dancer Sharna Burgess, Breathtaking Photos To Go With

Dancer Sharna Burgess gave us an exclusive interview where she talks all about her break during the off season of Dancing With The Stars. She spent some lovely time with family, friends, and her boyfriend Paul Kirkland as you will soon see. Sharna also saw some movies that she gives some reviews on (Sharna, I also loved “Life Of Pi”. It gets my vote for best movie of 2012! “WOW” is right!). As always, a dancer never rests as Sharna had some other projects she worked on and she’s been dreaming about new choreography and more for Dancing With The Stars. Keep your fingers crossed as Sharna is hoping to hear word soon on whether or not she will be a pro this season. Sharna was also gracious enough to send us lots of incredible and breathtaking pictures too over her break. You can click on them to get the full size. They’d make beautiful Desk tops for your computer. THANK YOU SO MUCH SHARNA and I, for one, will be keeping my fingers crossed!!!!

1. Hi Sharna!!! How are you and how has your break been from the show? Did you get lots of rest and do some fun things, see any movies, etc? How are your fur babies? When do you come back to the States??

SharnaBurgessChristmas2

Hi!! Im great, it has been a whirl wind since our DWTS finale but i am loving it! I was blessed to have my man Paul Kirkland, come to Australia with me and spend christmas and New Years with my family and friends. We toured the great ocean road together which was to die for. If any of you make it out to Australia please do it, it totally took my breath away. We also spent a lot of time water skiing and wake boarding. Australia was SO hot that you could seriously only be in the water.

PaulKirklandSharnaBurgess1

We watched a bunch of movies over the break, i loved Pitch Perfect, Life of Pi (WOW!!!) and The Guardians. Actually i recently watched Silver Linings with Peta Murgatroyd and wow, what an incredible film, its dark, but in the most beautiful way. I understand why its cleaning up the awards! I really cant wait to see Hansel and Gretel too!

PaulKirklandSharnaBurgess2

Our beautiful fur baby was more than happy to see her mum and dad when we finally returned. We were gone for all up about 5 weeks. When we walked in the door she kind of just stared at us for a second, almost as if to say “oh so you decided to come back? where have you been!!” I really missed her. Read more..

February 6, 2013 I Written By

I'm a fashion and music fan....and I have always loved dancing too of any kind. Dancing With The Stars seems to have this way of bringing all of those things together. One of my favorite dancing quotes at the moment: "No matter what, nobody can take away the dance you've already had...." ~Gleb Savchenko . For fun music and dance mixes, visit WilUnleashed Soundcloud. To view my photography site, see Lisa Kay Photography.

Henry Byalikov Answers Questions About Dancing With The Stars Season 16 And Much More

Kristyn Burtt interviewed Dancing With The Stars pro Henry Byalikov in a fans chat on Monday. Fans showed up to ask him some questions about his dancing career and Dancing With The Stars. He talks of how busy he’s been during the off season from choreographing for the new King Kong Musical to taking Fitness and Health photo shoots.

On Dancing With The Stars Season 16, Henry has no idea who is dancing, but, he’s hoping he will be picked as pro. Henry has been preparing for the position by thinking about the kinds of dances and how each dance will be a challenge and fun. Henry is also looking forward to who he would be partnered with and showing what he can do.

When asked on his celebrity dream partner, Henry picked Kristin Chenoweth. He thinks she would perfect for the show.

They also chat about Henry’s favorite dances, his favorite dancer, Strictly Ballroom, and lots more.

You can listen to this fun interview in full HERE. I just love this pro. He’s so appreciative of his fans. I liked when he said his fans are what drive him.

January 29, 2013 I Written By

I'm a fashion and music fan....and I have always loved dancing too of any kind. Dancing With The Stars seems to have this way of bringing all of those things together. One of my favorite dancing quotes at the moment: "No matter what, nobody can take away the dance you've already had...." ~Gleb Savchenko . For fun music and dance mixes, visit WilUnleashed Soundcloud. To view my photography site, see Lisa Kay Photography.

PureDWTS 2013 Henry Byalikov To Help Choreograph New King Kong Musical

Dancing With The Stars Henry Byalikov announced that he is helping to choreograph a new “King Kong” musical. The new musical is set to open in June 2013 at Melbourne’s Regent Theatre in Australia. You can read more at King Kong Live On Stage and see a video preview from the director Daniel Kramer at Team H Byalikov. Thanks to @Elara38 at twitter and Henry for the heads up.

Very cool! CONGRATS HENRY!

January 21, 2013 I Written By

I'm a fashion and music fan....and I have always loved dancing too of any kind. Dancing With The Stars seems to have this way of bringing all of those things together. One of my favorite dancing quotes at the moment: "No matter what, nobody can take away the dance you've already had...." ~Gleb Savchenko . For fun music and dance mixes, visit WilUnleashed Soundcloud. To view my photography site, see Lisa Kay Photography.

Sasha Farber Chats About DWTS, The Other Pros, His Dance Schedule, And More

For now, dance pro Sasha Farber plans to keep his schedule completely open for the next season of Dancing With The Stars which is of top priority. He hasn’t received the call yet to dance, but, he’s hoping to hear something in February. In the meantime, Sasha plans to do some exhibition dances and “Ballroom With A Twist”. He’s just started rehearsals. More with Kristyn Burtt below including his thoughts on his celebrity dream partner for Dancing With The Stars, his view on the other pros, and his favorite kind of dance. He also gives advise for young dancers. Another great interview!

December 28, 2012 I Written By

I'm a fashion and music fan....and I have always loved dancing too of any kind. Dancing With The Stars seems to have this way of bringing all of those things together. One of my favorite dancing quotes at the moment: "No matter what, nobody can take away the dance you've already had...." ~Gleb Savchenko . For fun music and dance mixes, visit WilUnleashed Soundcloud. To view my photography site, see Lisa Kay Photography.

Troupe Member Emma Slater Interviewed About Dancing With The Stars 16, Her Career, Future Plans, And More

What a wonderful interview with Dancing With The Stars Google Hangout and Dancing With The Stars troupe member Emma Slater! They ask Emma if she knows anything about Dancing With The Stars Season 16 yet. Emma hasn’t heard anything official and probably won’t until about a week before the show starts “when they are needed”, but she hopes the same judges will stay and the half points. They also ask her on the biggest highlights of her career! Did you know she started dancing at 10? More in detail below including information on “Ballroom With A Twist” for what she and some of the other pros will be taking part in. She also talks of Dancing With The Stars In Las Vegas and the Cruises to take place. Geat interview GIRLS! It’s great to get to know Emma more!!

I Written By

I'm a fashion and music fan....and I have always loved dancing too of any kind. Dancing With The Stars seems to have this way of bringing all of those things together. One of my favorite dancing quotes at the moment: "No matter what, nobody can take away the dance you've already had...." ~Gleb Savchenko . For fun music and dance mixes, visit WilUnleashed Soundcloud. To view my photography site, see Lisa Kay Photography.