This is kind of cool. In this AOL exclusive, Tony Dovolani shows how you can keep fit through dance…
“Makes your soul feel good” ~ Mark Ballas
Dancing With The Stars and singer Mark Ballas talked with 95.5 WPLJ FM about his new music and new album coming at the end of the summer. He says it’s finished, but, he wants to put out a couple of singles first. He’s also hoping to tour after the album comes out too. I’m excited for him. If the rest of the songs are anything like “Get My Name”, it’s going to be a winner in my opinion. Go Mark!
Guest blogger, Lois Troutman, writes a review of the Dancing With The Stars Season 18 seen from her eyes….
DANCING WITH THE STARS SEASON 18 R-E-W-I-N-D
Written By Lois A Troutman, May 24, 2014
Season 18 of DANCING WITH THE STARS is now history! Archived in the ABC computer memory banks. Trillions of tiny pixels have captured every dance step, every word spoken, every movement! Please come with me as I R-E-W-I-N-D and review the tiny pixels in that memory bank! With a click of the mouse, those memories come back to life!
We waited in anxious anticipation of the Cast Announcement! Where and when would we discover the next group of celebrities willing to take on the arduous challenge? We always have cast leaks but they are not necessarily exact. Every season begs the answer to this question – would The Blushin’ Russian or the Prowling Lion, whichever one shows up, return? You know exactly who I mean! Wink! Wink!
Wah Lah! The magic begins! On March 4, 2014, the Cast Announcement took place in Los Angeles, Californina, on GOOD MORNING AMERICA! A lucky audience witnessed the reveals.
ERIN ANDREWS debuted as Co-Host, ably taking the stage with Host Stalwart, Emmy Winner, TOM BERGERON. The first of many changes which I will cover as I R-E-W-I-N-D those pixels.
THE CELEBRITIES AND PROS IN ORDER OF. THEIR ENTRANCE ON THE STAGE:
DANICA MCKELLAR AND VALENTIN CHMERKOVSKIY
CODY SIMPSON AND WITNEY CARSON
BILLY DEE WILLIAMS AND EMMA SLATER
DIANA NYAD AND HENRY BYALIKOV
NENE LEAKES AND TONY DOVOLANI
JAMES MASLOW AND PETA MURGATROYD
SEAN AVERY AND KARINA SMIRNOFF
DREW CAREY AND CHERYL BURKE
CANDACE CAMERON BURE AND MARK BALLAS
CHARLIE WHITE AND SHARNA BURGESS
MERYL DAVIS AND YES FOLKS HE CAME BACK – MAKSIM CHMERKOVSKIY
AMY PURDY was announced via tape with DEREK HOUGH
March 17, 2014, Season 18 debuted for the DANCING WITH THE STARS faithful television and in-person audiences! WOW – Season 18 already! I remember the very first show of Season One! The show has evolved into a juggernaut, a dancing dynasty! If I had my wish, and I believe I speak for the majority, we will have 18 more seasons! Oh pshaw, I would love to be in the Old Folks Home Rockin To The Dancing Beat in my rocking chair! If I can still pull words out of my brain, I’ll still be writing about the show!
SEASON 18 CHANGES:
The change that generated much chatter and confusion was The Switch-Up. Derek hinted at this change during the Cast Announcement broadcast. Everyone seemed confused if this was a one-week occurrence or would actually go further. Votes were cast for the switched celebrities and pros. The confusion was cleared up in Week Four as Week Five would be the only week for the switched partners. Phew, wiping of brows spread throughout the studio! The original pairs would resume in Week Six.
My Grade For The Grand Switch-UP! – A-
I had actually thought of this before. What if they danced with another pro? Since it was a one-time occurrence, why not sit back, relax and enjoy what could be done with other pairings. Sure it wasn’t the same vibe, but the vibe was still pretty darned entertaining!
ADDITION OF MORE GUEST JUDGES:
Guest judges were the rule as most weeks there was a fill-in with a guest. Returning was JULIANNE HOUGH. Joining In the guest judge rotation were ROBIN ROBERTS, RICKY MARTIN, ABBY LEE MILLER, REDFOO, DONNY OSMOND, and renowned Director/Choreographer KENNY ORTEGA.
ORTEGA, as an expert, offered the best commentary. I enjoyed the different takes and views of ROBERTS, MARTIN, REDFOO, and OSMOND. HOUGH really rubbed me the wrong way this season. Yes, her commentary of Maks phoning it in didn’t help. But quite honestly, she need not return if they have guests for Season 19. The wrong way rubbing continued with me big time with MILLER. Again, her comments about Maks didn’t sit well with me. But, her entire appearance left me colder than an iceberg in Alaska!
My Grades for Guest Judges – A for Entertainment! D- For the inclusion of HOUGH and MILLER!
Should there be guests next season? Sure, why not, but how about being consistent and using pros each guest shot who are not dancing on the show. For example, if LOUIS VAN AMSTEL isn’t dancing, have him be a guest judge.
The $64,000 question for next season is whether LEN GOODMAN will return. If he decides to hang up his “A TEN FROM LEN PADDLE”, who would you choose for his replacement? Off the top of my head I could choose KENNY ORTEGA, KYM JOHNSON, and The Blushin Russian MAKSIM CHMERKOVSKIY. Both JOHNSON and CHMERKOVSKIY have now had judging experience. Perhaps they should be at the top of the list. Of course my preference is to stiil have GRUMPY GOODMAN, if he decides to give the paddles another whirl. But, whatever he decides will be the right thing.
THE INTRODUCTION OF DANCING DUOS:
All season long I was waiting for the Trio Dances! The season wound down to the final weeks, no trios, but dancing duos. My opinion is I find any dancing styles, combinations to be entertaining. But darned if I didn’t miss the trios! For example, I was looking forward to Henry, Sasha and Artem perhaps chosen for trios. No biggie, I suppose but perhaps next season the trios will be reinstated. Or some other combinations. I love the Team Dances and of course the highlights of any season, the Freestyles.
My Grade for Duos – A for Entertainment
NEW WAYS OF ANNOUNCING ELIMINATIONS, ETC:
Often on Season 18 the eliminations, who was in jeopardy, etc, were announced sporadically throughout the broadcast. Often expecting the couple to dance when they found out they were in jeopardy. Two eliminations were announced the second week of the show. I suppose they had to do something to keep within the time restraints of number of shows. But throwing two couples out the first eliminations had to sting.
Grade for This Category – B- – For the shock factor and seemingly being hard on the contestants to dance after finding out they were in jeopardy.
THE RE-INTRODUCTION OF THE SKYBOX:
Thank the Dancing Gods for bringing back the Skybox! It just simply made more sense to separate the dancers from the judges, than the ghastly glitter pit they had for Season 17. It is a much better place for ANDREWS to conduct the interviews of the dancers after their dances. And to get their scores. Plus the cast can gather together, watch from above, and show their support for each other.
Grade For Bringing Back the Skybox – A++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
My Grade for ERIN ANDREWS as new Co-Host – A+. I like her as a Sports Reporter. I am equally pleased with her on the show! She did fine work and I welcome her back next season!
FURTHER THOUGHTS ON SEASON 18:
The dancing was of high caliber and phenomenal! It was hard seeing couples who were excelling, doing superlative dancing leaving. Yes, it happens every season. But my jaw dropped at the eliminations of especially MCKELLAR and WHITE from finale consideration. The dancing was exceptional and the eliminations had to be. But it got harder to see dancers who were doing blockbuster work leaving the ballroom.
Personal stories unfolded that left us inspired, AMY PURDY’s spectacular, how-does-she-do-that dancing journey with DEREK HOUGH. To CANDACE CAMERON BURE overcoming nerves and fears with the help of MARK BALLAS. To MERYL DAVIS AND MAKSIM CHMERKOVSKIY intense, sweet, explosive, never before seen for Maks chemistry. To CHARLIE WHITE AND SHARNA BURGESS keeping us happy every week. To JAMES MASLOW AND PETA MURGATROYD taking us on a journey of intense passion. To DANICA MCKELLAR AND VALENTIN CHMERKOVSKIY making us happy we were her guests at the dancing ball. To all the rest of the couples for drawing us in to this very happy show!
I adore every pro! I am in awe of their astounding dancing talents! Even if they aren’t teaching, they work hard each season. Especially this season they were included in a lot of the couple’s dances. I loved that aspect! It added to the effect, offering a dance revue style, etc. I love each and every pro number from the openings to the re-instated Macy’s Stars of Dance! I don’t think there is anything these pros can’t learn and teach! They do it all with stupendous talents! I salute every one! They are all stellar and have their own unique qualities to bring to the dancing table!
Conrad Green, long-time Executive Producer at the helm, is hanging up his dancing duties. Rob Wade will be at the helm starting in Season 19. Perhaps many more fresh ideas will enhance this already brilliant show calked DANCING WITH THE STARS!
I was ecstatic to see The Mirror Ball Trophy hoisted by MERYL DAVIS AND THE BLUSHIN’ RUSSIAN, MAKSIM CHMERKOVSKIY! I am ecstatic to see him win his first! So well deserved!
The season meandered along at a clip faster than a speeding bullet! From their first introductions to the final crowning of the champions, it seemed like it was a blur of dance steps, sequined costumes, host chatter, judges scoring paddles, etc!
Season 19 will return in September with a new cast! I shall welcome this one with the same gusto that I have welcomed each cast! I have seen every season, every show! My hopes are to have the show continue twice a year for many seasons to come! Each season is unique and special!
As Bruno said about the Team Loca Dance, if there was a Results Show there could be an encore. I felt that way about many dances. And, I have not been shy about wanting the Results Show to return.
Thanks for reading my opinions and this DANCING WITH THE STARS, SEASON 18
R-E-W-I-N-D! We will be wound up again in September for Season 19!
ABC World news featured a segment with Maks Chmerkovksiy last night. They talked of his life and his road to winning a mirror ball on Dancing With The Stars. I’m loving the footage of when he was little…
Also, People has an article posted with some pictures of Meryl and Maks celebrating their win at a New York City night club. Val Chmerkovskiy, Tony Dovolani and Jenna Johnson were also there.
Copied from Pure Derek Hough where you can find lots more goodies including rehearsal news, more interviews, screen caps from the week and lots more…
Good4Utah has a fun new interview posted with Derek Hough. I can’t embed it, so, be sure to see it at the link. Derek tells them about his tour coming to Utah and what he plans to do with his dad while he’s there. Amy Purdy is interviewed too and she chimes in. They talk on Dancing With The Stars as well. Below is a take. Be sure to see the link for more.
Viewers this season have watched Amy redefine “impossible” with Derek’s groundbreaking choreography, dance moves that Utahns will get to see up close and personal during he and sister Julianne’s new summer dance tour.
“Julianne and I are taking the tour to Utah and we are dreading it because of the altitude…” said Hough.
Altitude aside Derek says, even after 18 seasons in Los Angeles, on Dancing with the Stars, it’s Utah where he feels most at home .
“I really hope that coming from Utah, I represent it. I don’t know if I am or not, but that we are doing them proud,” said Hough.
The summer dance tours are heating up! Derek and Julianne Hough’s MOVE Live On Tour is about to begin. Also, “Ballroom With A Twist” is gearing up for it’s summer run as well. Scott Stander, the producer of “Ballroom With A Twist“, tells us the show “is going great guns!” He also tells us they have a “very exciting schedule this year and some shows are already SOLD OUT”! He also informs us of all the pro dancers from Dancing With The Stars for who will be performing. They include Maksim Chmerkovskiy, Val Chmerkovskiy, Tony Dovolani, Karina Smirnoff, Anna Trebunskaya, Sharna Burgess, and Cheryl Burke! He also tells us Maks and Val will be hosting some shows as well as performing. Here is more from Scott…
BALLROOM WITH A TWIST is going great guns!… We have a Very Exciting Schedule this year and some shows are already SOLD OUT!
Summer 2014 will be our Starriest Tour- and we think the fans will be psyched to see their favorite Celebrity dancers up close and personal. Maks & Val will perform together! Hosting and performing on stage in one show! This dream has been a year in the making so I’m really looking forward to seeing that chemistry hit the stage. And the icing on the cake is bringing this show and the Big Stars to Hawaii for the first time. I don’t think Waikiki will ever be the same.
Below is a list of the shows and the pros who will be dancing….
BALLROOM WITH A TWIST – SUMMER 2014 SCHEDULE:
Brooks, CA Cache Creek Casino Resort June 21, 2014 (Anna Trebunskaya and Val Chmerkovskiy)
Dallas, TX Music Hall at Fair Park July 19th (Maksim Chmerkovskiy, Tony Dovolani, Karina Smirnoff, and Cheryl Burke) 2 shows
Beverly, MA North Shore Music Theatre in July 31 and Aug 1st (Maksim Chmerkovskiy, Val Chmerkovskiy, Karina Smirnoff, and Sharna Burgess) Sold -Out
Westbury, NY NYCB Theatre at Westbury Aug 2nd (Maksim Chmerkovskiy, Val Chmerkovskiy, Karina Smirnoff, and Sharna Burgess)
Lancaster, Pennsylvania Fulton Theatre Aug 5-10 (Val Chmerkovskiy & Sharna Burgess)
Seattle, WA 5th Avenue Theatre Aug 15-17th (Sharna Burgess, Val Chmerkovskiy, Maks Chmerkovskiy, Karina Smirnoff)
Honolulu, HI Blaisdell Concert Hall August 19 & 20th (Maksim Chmerkovskiy, Val Chmerkovskiy, Karina Smirnoff, Sharna Burgess,Tony Dovolani & Cheryl Burke)
Then we start back up in the fall thru Spring and into next summer. Stay tuned for more amazing news!
For ticket information for how you can attend, see our Ballroom With A Twist schedule which is featured in our “Pure DWTS Features” in the top bar. As most of you know, I saw the show in February and it was a gas!! What a lively night of fun and entertainment!! If you think the pros are fun and awesome to see on TV, wait until you see them up close and personal. It’s a whole different ballgame.
Red Carpet Roxy talked Tom Bergeron, Sharna Burgess, Karina Smirnoff, Danica McKellar and Kym Johnson about this season of Dancing With The Stars at the Wrap Party!! This is fun…especially the end. Check it out!
DWTS fan Haley went to GMA after the finale and very graciously provided a blog and some photos so we could all share in the experience. Thanks Haley!! If you want to see additional pictures of Derek and Amy from Haley’s day, hit up PureDerekHough.com
I arrived to the GMA studio at about 1:15 AM. I thought a lot of people might be there, but I was the first one by a long shot. There were a lot of crew members setting up the dance floor area and the float that the cast arrived on, so I had people to talk to. They were all really nice and complimented me on the sign I made and my dedication to attending the taping. They all seem like really happy people so it was nice to hang out with them and talk to them for a few hours. The majority of the people showed up at about 5:30am, but I already took my place against the barricade. I found out from the crew that no fans were going to be let inside the studio, so I figured that the next best place to be was the outside dance floor area. It was really uneventful until about 7:45 when the cameras were turning on outside and more people showed up just before the cast arrived on the float. We saw Derek shooting his instagram video and everyone was screaming and going crazy. Lindsay, Jenna, Artem and Sasha came outside very quickly and rehearsed a bit and took pictures with anyone who asked. They all looked like really close friends and Lindsay has the cutest laugh I’ve ever heard. We got to watch the cast interviews on a monitor outside, and the troupe watched along with us. Lindsay and Jenna were ‘awww’ing a lot at Charlie’s message to Meryl. Read more..
What a fun interview with Mark Ballas and the Huffington Post. He talks about the finale of Dancing With The Stars, his injury, and his “Get My Name” single. Speaking of “Get My Name”, Pure Derek Hough has a “behind the scenes” interview with George Pennacchio if you want to check that out too.
Give Lois a hand for another poetic justice wrapping the season up for Dancing With The Stars Season 18!
THE GRAND FINALE DANCE-PLOSION
THE GRAND FINALE DANCE-PLOSION on grand display
A party of dancing and music, whole cast came out to play
The Cast felt full of love for each other, full of mixed emotion
Gathered together for THE GRAND FINALE DANCE-PLOSION
SETTING THE GRAND FINALE DANCE-PLOSION SCENES
OPENING NUMBER – IT’S MY PARTY
A cast extravaganza party, celebration of Season 18
A dazzling display of dancing talent, steps of love
Heartfelt production together on the ballroom stage
ENCORE FREESTYLE – ORIGINAL DON
JAMES MASLOW AND PETA MURGATROYD
WITH DANCERS – A LANDS!IDE CHOICE
A re-wind full of zing, with zest, pizzazz
A DANCE-PLOSION full of razz-ma-tazz
TEAM LOCA – LIVIN’ LA VIDA LOCA
Outstanding cabaret-feel, show-stopper
Intricate, intoxicating, invigorating display
CHARLIE WHITE AND SHARNA BURGESS
As delightful as the first time, a happy dance
With warp speed energy, DANCE-SPLOSION revue
BE OUR GUEST
VALENTIN CHMERKOVSKIY AND DANICA MCKELLAR
As charming as the first time, a spectacular dance
Giving VAL AND DANICA another chance to shine
CHARLIE WHITE AND MERYL DAVIS
DANCING ON. WOOD
Display of spectacular lifts, affection, support
Free-flowing with heart, with soul, with spirit
GUEST MUSICIANS WITH. DANCERS
Electric DANCE-PLOSIONS of dance and music
ARIANA GRANDE – PROBLEM
AMBER RILEY – COLORBLIND AND DO YOUR THING
CHRISTINA PERRI – HUMAN
IGGY AZALEA – FANCY
CODY SIMPSON – SURFBOARD
MAKSIM CHMERKOVSKIY AND MERYL DAVIS
FOXTROT AND. CHA-CHA-CHA – GLOWING
The Blushin Russian and The Lion Tamer
Stirring passion within – first love of dance
CANDACE CAMERON BURE AND MARK BALLAS
SAMBA AND QUICKSTEP – SIR DUKE
Charming, genuine feeling of the dance
The faith kept a dancer going, a fan favorite
AMY PURDY AND DEREK HOUGH
ARGENTINE TANGO – CHA-CHA-CHA – RATHER BE
A dancer with unbreakable spirit, a lesson for America
Each dance uplifting depicting a possible journey
THE GRAND FINALE DANCE-PLOSION crowned a new pair
Maks and Meryl hoisted the Mirror Ball Trophy high in the air
Season 18 was a phenomenal DANCE-PLOSION celebration
We cheered, we were sad to let go of the dancing sensation!
Written By Lois A Troutman, May 21, 2014
SEASON 18 IS IN THE DANCING WITH THE STARS HISTORY BOOK!
WE CAN’T WAIT TO COME BACK IN SEPTEMBER FOR ANOTHER LOOK!
SEE YA FOR SEASON 19 WITH NEW POEMS AND WRITINGS!
KEEPING THEM FRESH AND NEW FOR YOUR READING PLEASURE!