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PureDWTS Sharna Choreographs for SYTYCD; Lindsay & Rylee’s Sister Jensen Survives Another Week

It was week 2 of the live shows last night, and Sharna was one of this week’s choreographers – she choreographed a jive for contemporary dancer Genessy & hip-hop dancer Slavik:

I didn’t actually watch the show, so maybe one of you that did can interject here – but while the choreography was cute (and had far more content than the cha-cha Val choreographed last week), I don’t feel like either one of the contestants really nailed it.  Genessy seemed to go off-time quite a bit, and the tricks felt labored. Nice routine from Sharna, but I think it just goes to show that it’s not nearly as easy for non-ballroom dances to pick up ballroom/Latin as some seem to think it is.

So this happened tonight!!!!!! Firstly @danceonfox thank you for having me, it’s been a long time coming and we finally made it happen 🙏🏻🙌🏻 So honored to be alongside choreographers that I admire and am in awe of daily. I’ll come back as often as you’ll have me. • Now to my babies!!!! Ahhhhh @itsslavik and @genessyc_ you have me a proud mama right now!! You already know but let me say it again… YOU CRUSHED IT!!! I mean… a STANDING O from the judges too!!!! This wasn’t easy for you, and I certainly wasn’t easy on you, but my goodness… You two have a work ethic and passion like no other. Team work makes the dream work and you two are the dream team. I cannot wait to watch the rest of your journey not only on this show but also all the goodness that will follow it. Stay grounded stay focused and stay in that pocket 😘🙌🏻🔥♥️

A post shared by Sharna Burgess (@sharnaburgess) on

Meanwhile, Lindsay & Rylee’s sister Jensen survived the first week of eliminations – Mama Arnold, sis Brynley, and Jordan were on-hand to support her, while Lindsay & Rylee (who looked like they were tied up with rehearsals), campaigned for votes for her on Instagram:

Jensen & her partner, Jay Jay, did what I consider to be a pretty badass African Jazz:

In some less-encouraging news, the two other Latin/ballroom dancers on this season, Cole & Magda (who is a Chmerkovskiy friend) ended up in the bottom 2 last night, but didn’t get sent home. I’m thinking Jensen may be our only hope for a ballroom dancer in the finals this season!

August 14, 2018 I Written By

Ultrasound sales specialist by day, semi-knowledgeable DWTS fan by night...with a smattering of hair & makeup enthusiast, occasional model, baker, 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. Follow me (and my dog!) on Twitter & Instagram: @putuincespence & @BirkinTheBulldog

PureDWTS DWTS Junior Pro Profile – Brightyn Brems

Age: 12
Height: 4’11” (Court’s best guess)
Hometown: Lehi, UT
Home studio: Center Stage Performing Arts
Dance style: cross-trained in ballroom/Latin, hip-hop, jazz, tap, contemporary, and gymnastics
How you might know her: part of the 801 Squad from season 1 of World of Dance; auditioned for So You Think You Can Dance: The Next Generation
Other accolades: 2017 TDA Female Mini Best Dancer
Pro mentor: Cheryl Burke
Celeb partner: Mandla Morris

Who better to tell you about Brightyn, than Brightyn herself? 🙂

Not sure if this actually aired on the show or not, but here was 801 Squad’s performance on WOD in season 1 – Brightyn is front & center for a good portion of the dance (you can also catch a quick glimpse of junior troupe member Makeila Lawrence):

Brightyn doing a very limber solo at The Dance Awards last year:

Competing in Latin:

And doing some edgy contemporary:

Court’s thoughts: Brightyn looks like a mini-Witney to me 🙂 And she’s got the charisma and talent to match! Contemporary seems to be her bread & butter, but she is incredibly well-trained in Latin as well.  She strikes me as one of the more mature junior pros, so I’m just hoping she can strike a balance between working hard and having fun. She’s got star quality, for sure!

Follow Brightyn on social media:

Brightyn’s Instagram
Brightyn’s YouTube

August 9, 2018 I Written By

Ultrasound sales specialist by day, semi-knowledgeable DWTS fan by night...with a smattering of hair & makeup enthusiast, occasional model, baker, 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. Follow me (and my dog!) on Twitter & Instagram: @putuincespence & @BirkinTheBulldog

PureDWTS Val Choreographs for SYTYCD; Lindsay & Rylee’s Sister Competes

So begins the yearly series of cross-over posts between DWTS & So You Think You Can Dance 😎 This week was the first of the live shows, and Val choreographed a cha-cha for top 10 finalists Magda (a Latin/ballroom dancer) and Darius (a contemporary dancer);

Overall, wasn’t bad – definitely better content-wise than the bulk of the stuff Dmitry has choreographed for SYTYCD, though there was some time-wasting and a bit too much “posing” for my taste…then again, I have found most of SYTYCD’s Latin & ballroom routines in recent years to be pretty watered-down, choreography-wise; I tend to think it’s because most of the non-ballroom contestants likely couldn’t handle a full-on Latin or ballroom routine.

Jenna & onetime DWTS troupe member Nicole Volynets were on-hand to support Val – and somehow got stuck in the nosebleed seats.

Lindsay & Rylee (and Mama Arnold!) were on-hand to support sis Jensen, who is one of the top 5 girls this season – she danced a samba (choreographed by Jean-Marc) & a jazz (choreographed by Mandy Moore, of course), to some interesting comments from Nigel (couldn’t find a video with them, but Google it and you’ll see what I mean):

Nigel had a rather convoluted explanation for Kristyn when asked about his comments about Jensen. Oh well – looks like a contender to me 🙂 More over at Pure SYTYCD.

August 8, 2018 I Written By

Ultrasound sales specialist by day, semi-knowledgeable DWTS fan by night...with a smattering of hair & makeup enthusiast, occasional model, baker, 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. Follow me (and my dog!) on Twitter & Instagram: @putuincespence & @BirkinTheBulldog

PureDWTS DWTS Junior Pro Profile – JT Church

Age: 12
Height: 4’9″ (Court’s best guess – he’s taller than Artyon, but still one of the shorter junior pros)
Hometown: Chandler, AZ
Home studio: Club Dance Studio
Dance styles: jazz, hip-hop, contemporary, ballroom/Latin, gymnastics
How you might know him: He was the runner-up on So You Think You Can Dance: The Next Generation; Lip Sync Battle Shorties
Other accolades: Mini Male Best Dancer at the 2017 Las Vegas Dance Awards
Pro mentor: Alan Bersten
Celeb partner: Sky Brown

A compilation of all of JT’s duets & solos while he was on SYTYCD:

Dancing a duet at the Radix Nationals this year:

Serving us some “Cake By The Ocean” on Lip Sync Battle Shorties:

Getting “In His Feelings” doing this hip-hop combo:

And some cha-cha fun with Lacey:

Court’s thoughts: Another extraordinarily well-rounded and energetic kid – I honestly don’t think there’s a single weak link in the junior pros, guys; most of these kids are cross-trained better than a good chunk of the adult pros. I think Jake’s got everything he needs to do well on the show – the technique, the showmanship, the versatility; my only concern (and this is an itty-bitty one, no pun intended) is that his small stature/build may mean his partner has an inch or two on him, and he may not yet have the upper-body strength for lifts – it just might limit he & Sky a bit in terms of variety in their routines, but as I mentioned – this is a very small concern. I’m really having to stretch to find issues with these junior pros, they’re that good 😉

Follow JT on social media:

JT’s Instagram
JT’s Twitter
JT’s Facebook

August 2, 2018 I Written By

Ultrasound sales specialist by day, semi-knowledgeable DWTS fan by night...with a smattering of hair & makeup enthusiast, occasional model, baker, 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. Follow me (and my dog!) on Twitter & Instagram: @putuincespence & @BirkinTheBulldog

PureDWTS DWTS Junior Season 1 – Judges Announced on GMA

Without much fanfare or previous notice, GMA announced the DWTS Junior judges this morning – which we already knew were Val, Adam Rippon, & Mandy Moore. Video below for those who missed (I did too). Not too much of note – they of course name dropped Ginger, they mispronounced Val’s name *chuckle*, Adam steals the show by just being himself. All in all, it didn’t feel like this segment had a whole lot of pre-planning, and was thrown together on the fly. Thoughts?

July 30, 2018 I Written By

Ultrasound sales specialist by day, semi-knowledgeable DWTS fan by night...with a smattering of hair & makeup enthusiast, occasional model, baker, 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. Follow me (and my dog!) on Twitter & Instagram: @putuincespence & @BirkinTheBulldog

PureDWTS Lindsay Arnold Plays Basketball For Charity At 50K Charity Challenge Celebrity Game

So last night was the 50K Charity Challenge Celebrity Basketball Game at UCLA’s Pauley Pavilion, and Lindsay was one of the celebrity players along with Season 24 MBT-holder Rashad Jennings…and Black-ish‘s Miles Brown (this is important – more on that later). Her DWTS Jr. mentee (and younger sister) Rylee, and her mom were there to cheer her on.  More at Just Jared Jr

Lindsay Arnold readies her free throw shot during the 50K Charity Challenge Celebrity Basketball Game at UCLA’s Pauley Pavilion on Tuesday night (July 17) in Westwood, Calif.

The 24-year-old DWTS pro joined Rashad Jennings and Miles Brown at the event, and during halftime, Lindsay tied with Colton Underwood and Brittney Elena during the free throw competition.

Each player picked up $5,000 for their chosen charity. Sweet!

Check out Linds’ run at the free throw competition…

July 18, 2018 I Written By

Ultrasound sales specialist by day, semi-knowledgeable DWTS fan by night...with a smattering of hair & makeup enthusiast, occasional model, baker, 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. Follow me (and my dog!) on Twitter & Instagram: @putuincespence & @BirkinTheBulldog

PureDWTS DWTS Junior Pro Profile: Artyon Celestine

Age: 11
Height: 4’5″ (confirmed by Artyon in an Instagram live)
Hometown: Murrieta, California
Home studio: Murrieta Dance Project
Dance styles: tap, jazz/modern, hip-hop, gymnastics
How you might know him: Season 12 of America’s Got Talent, where he made it to the quarterfinals with his partner Paige; season 1 of Little Big Shots; ensemble dancer from last year’s A Christmas Story Live!; contestant on Lip Sync Battle: Shorties
Other accolades: 2016 Mini Male Best Dancer at The Dance Awards; performed at the BET Awards this year
Pro mentor: Brandon Armstrong
Celeb partner: Ariana Greenblatt

The AGT performance where I just fell in love with this adorable smol bean:

Artyon’s big break on The Ellen Show:

Serving us “B.O.S.S.” realness on Lip Sync Battle Shorties:

Doing a little #JujuOnThatBeat with Immabeast:

Showing off his tap skills, and throwing in some krumping & twerking:

Court’s thoughts: He’s got personality for DAYS – and that smile of his is just contagious 🙂 He seems to have a good grasp of stage presence, he’s very athletic, and his tap/jazz/modern technique seems pretty well-honed; my only concern is that he is one of a few junior pros that is not cross-trained in ballroom. Since we don’t really know yet just how ballroom-centric this show is going to end up being, his lack of ballroom training may not even be an issue…or it might be.  Who knows. Source assures me that “what he lacks in ballroom training, he more than makes up for in personality!” I hope he has a strong pro that excels at teaching kids and can help him pick up on any ballroom quickly.  But I’m excited that we have him in the cast – he’s just such a bright spot 🙂

Follow Artyon on social media:

Artyon’s Instagram
Artyon’s Twitter
Artyon’s Facebook
Artyon’s Facebook Fan Page
Artyon’s YouTube

I Written By

Ultrasound sales specialist by day, semi-knowledgeable DWTS fan by night...with a smattering of hair & makeup enthusiast, occasional model, baker, 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. Follow me (and my dog!) on Twitter & Instagram: @putuincespence & @BirkinTheBulldog

PureDWTS DWTS Junior Pro Profile: Rylee Arnold

Age: 13
Height: 4’11”
Hometown: Provo, Utah
Home studio: VIBE
Dance style: cross-trained in ballroom, hip-hop, jazz, tap, contemporary, and gymnastics
How you might know her: She’s Lindsay’s youngest sister, and tried out for SYTYCD: The Next Generation (but didn’t make it to the live shows).
Other accolades: Placed 3rd in Under-10 Latin at the WDC World Championship in Paris in 2014. 
Pro mentor: Lindsay Arnold
Celeb partner: Miles Brown

Rylee (and Brightyn!) talk SYTYCD: The Next Generation

Dancing some cha-cha with her competition partner, Daniel:

Doing hip-hop (with appearances by Brightyn & Hailey):

Doing some contemporary…

And the lovely Arnold ladies 🙂

Court’s thoughts: Rylee on her own is going to be staunch competition – like Lindsay, she’s cross-trained in just about every style, and she seems to excel in ALL of them. God bless VIBE and the cross-training they give their kids – all of their dancers are so well-rounded 🙂 But when you add Lindsay’s guidance and her choreography to the mix? Calling it now – barring any shenanigans (and there had better not be any, with these adorable smol pros that I already feel very protective of), we will see Rylee in the finals of DWTSJ. Like Lindsay, she has IT.

Follow Rylee on social media:

Rylee’s Instagram
Rylee’s YouTube

July 17, 2018 I Written By

Ultrasound sales specialist by day, semi-knowledgeable DWTS fan by night...with a smattering of hair & makeup enthusiast, occasional model, baker, 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. Follow me (and my dog!) on Twitter & Instagram: @putuincespence & @BirkinTheBulldog

PureDWTS 2018 Emmy Awards – Nomination Predictions/Live Blog

Once again, this has snuck up on us 😛 I will try to do a live blog tomorrow morning once the announcements are up, but it may end up being more of a “this is what was announced” post with a short lag time…we shall see.

I think part of the reason we kinda spaced this is because it looks to be slim pickin’s for DWTS this year – the shortened (and simplified) spring season means fewer eligible routines for the Outstanding Choreography category, and with World of Dance‘s first season now eligible, I think we could witness a reduction in nominees from SYTYCD, and DWTS being shut out of the category completely.  Additionally, part of me thinks that we may see WOD and possibly American Idol also picking up a few nominations in other categories (Outstanding Costume Design, Outstanding Makeup, Outstanding Hairstyling, Outanding Lighting Design, etc) that might have otherwise gone to DWTS – I don’t think the austerity measures that they appeared to take with the All-Athletes season helped, because they seemed to stick to simpler, “safer” hair, makeup, costuming, and staging.

As for Outstanding Reality TV Series/Reality Host – given that DWTS/Tom got shut out last year, I’m not optimistic they’ll somehow elbow their way back in this year, especially with WOD and AI in the mix; my guess is that RuPaul wins Outstanding Reality Host again, and RuPaul’s Drag Race could be the dark horse to win Outstanding Reality Series, with the boom in viewership they’ve experienced since moving the show from Logo to VH1. But I digress…

Read more..

July 11, 2018 I Written By

Ultrasound sales specialist by day, semi-knowledgeable DWTS fan by night...with a smattering of hair & makeup enthusiast, occasional model, baker, 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. Follow me (and my dog!) on Twitter & Instagram: @putuincespence & @BirkinTheBulldog

The Pros and Their Athlete Parters Quiz Each other Ahead of DWTS Season 26 (Video)

These are some fun videos that Cathy sent me – I have to say there’s not a single person I don’t like on this cast. This should be good!!

April 15, 2018 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. :-)