Of the six stars who performed Monday night, Fegan had actually earned the second-highest judges’ score, but contestants are eliminated based on a combination of judges’ scores as well as audience votes.
Fegan, 20, got the news he would be leaving at about the midpoint of the hour-long results show. He said he was happy to be able to add ballroom dancing skills to his repertoire.
His pro partner, Chelsie Hightower, said she was proud of him.
“He was such a joy to work with and came every day willing to work and such a great attitude,” she said.
Gilbert, 48, and Welsh classical singer Katherine Jenkins were both in jeopardy, and Gilbert learned her fate at the end of the show.
The actress, whose birthday is today, said tearfully: “I can’t even describe what a learning and growing experience this has been. It’s been a real blessing and a joy.”
When co-host Tom Bergeron pointed out that being sent home from the show could not have been the best way to spend her birthday, Gilbert replied: “I’m amazed that I even made it this far and the things that I was able to do and the things we were able to overcome to have been here … does make it a really incredible birthday.”
Both stars have had their struggles during the course of season 14. Gilbert, of “Little House on the Prairie” fame, has consistently scored near or at the bottom of the leaderboard, but viewers’ votes kept her dancing. Fegan, on the other hand, has been praised for his dance ability, but despite frequent strong scores from judges, he has found himself in the bottom two for several weeks.
Last week he beat actor Jaleel White in a dance duel to remain on the show, but tonight there was no dance duel, and no opportunity for a second chance.
Tonight’s show featured a live performance from Chris Brown, and a dance tribute to the late Dick Clark. It also saw the return of “DanceCenter” – the popular parody of the ESPN’s “SportsCenter.” “DanceCenter” features former “Dancing With the Stars” contestants Jerry Rice and Kenny Mayne, and the show’s head judge, Len Goodman.
NFL star Donald Driver, “Extra” co-host Maria Menounos, telenovela actor William Levy and Welsh classical singer Katherine Jenkins will return to compete in next week’s semi-finals. One of those four will be sent home, and the final three and their pro dance partners will battle it out for the mirror ball trophy.
In addition to Gilbert, Fegan and White, singer Gavin DeGraw, tennis star Martina Navratilova, actor Jack Wagner, talk show host Sherri Shepherd and singer Gladys Knight have already been booted from the show this season.