Country music singer Kellie Pickler took the lead on ABC’s “Dancing With the Stars” during its prom-night-themed show tonight.
Pickler took first place by earning 25 out of a possible 30 points for her jive, while country music legend Wynonna Judd was the night’s low scorer, earning 15 points for her samba.
Viewers will have until Tuesday morning to tweet their choice for the celebrities that they believed were the king and queen of the prom. The winners will each earn two bonus points going into Tuesday’s results show and the first elimination of the season.
The star with the lowest combined tally of viewer votes and judges’ scores will leave the competition.
Lisa Vanderpump, who stars in “The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills,” and world champion boxer Victor Ortiz were the lowest scorers last week, but they were each spared possible elimination when figure skater Dorothy Hamill withdrew from the competition with a back injury.
Eleven celebrities are vying for the mirror ball trophy in the 16th season of the program.
Aly Raisman: The Olympic gymnast’s elegant Viennese waltz won approval from the judges. Head judge Len Goodman drew boos from the ballroom audience when he initially told Raisman that he had been impressed with her previous dances but wasn’t impressed with tonight’s dance, but the boos quickly turned to laughter and applause when he followed that critique with “April fools’!” Bruno Tonioli told Raisman that the audience was “swept away” by the romance of her dance and her expressive movements. While Carrie Ann Inaba agreed that her quality of movement was strong and refined, Inaba said Raisman needed to work more on staying in character. Raisman earned 23 points.
Andy Dick: The comedian channeled a nerd who comes across a beautiful girl in a cha cha cha that judges found entertaining. Said Tonioli: “I’m telling you. Timing a bit off, placement a bit odd, entertainment value fully on.” Goodman repeated his evaluation that he didn’t think Dick was a good dancer (and the audience booed), but he added: “Andy, what you do is, you make me feel good. I feel better after watching you than I did before you danced. … Well done!” Dick earned 18 points.
Ingo Rademacher: Judges approved of the power in the soap opera star’s paso doble, but urged him to work harder on refining his movements. Inaba said she believed Rademacher had a lot of untapped potential and she counseled him to work on his core so his posture could be better. Goodman said he liked the feel and attitude of the dance, while Tonioli said he could tell that Rademacher had worked hard on his performance. Rademacher earned 21 points.
Lisa Vanderpump: The “Housewives” star turned in a Viennese waltz that Goodman called “light and breezy, free and easy.” Although he encouraged Vanderpump to pay attention to her posture and footwork, Goodman said he liked the feel of the routine. Tonioli also commended Vanderpump, although he pointed out that she missed a few passes during the routine and needed to be consistent. Inaba said she liked watching Vanderpump and her partner, Gleb Savchenko. “As a unit, you’re just beautiful to look at,” she said, adding that she thought Vanderpump did a nice job. Judges awarded Vanderpump 21 points.
Kellie Pickler: The country music singer’s jive – set to the theme of “Footloose” – pleased the crowd and the judges. “You were flying about like a wasp at a picnic. … You are officially the queen of the prom,” Goodman told Pickler, while Inaba called the performance “ridiculously amazing.” Tonioli said the performance was crisp, tight and precise. Pickler earned 25 points.
Victor Ortiz: The champion boxer’s contemporary routine earned a standing ovation from Tonioli, who was effusive in his praise. “Victor, unbelievable. You’re a dancer, man,” Tonioli said, adding that Ortiz’s performance was sentimental, gentle and caring, with “wonderful ease of movement, total involvement. You make your partner proud.” Based on Ortiz’s previous performance, Goodman was expecting the worst but said he was pleasantly surprised. He said the lifts were good but said Ortiz needed to work on his movement more. Ortiz earned 23 points.
DL Hughley: Judges found the comedian’s salsa – set to James Brown’s “Sex Machine” – sorely lacking, and two of them didn’t mince words. ”Well DL, if you’re a sex machine, I’m America’s next top model,” Goodman said. “I admire your spirit … this wasn’t a salsa. There was no rhythm, there was not a lot of hip action going on, not enough passes. It was as untidy as a teenager’s bedroom.” Tonioli wasn’t much kinder, saying: “I appreciate the effort but, I mean, salsa is all about very smooth, slinky and oily hip action. What you looked like was almost a case of hip replacement.” Inaba said she appreciated that Hughley was trying and said that counted for a lot. “That’s what this show is all about, people who don’t know how to dance coming out here and giving it their best. I see the improvement,” she said. Hughley earned 16 points.
Jacoby Jones: The NFL player’s sultry rumba brought cheers from the ballroom audience and approval from the judges. Tonioli told Jones he was “smoldering like a volcano of passion,” while Goodman said Jones displayed refinement and quality of movement, adding, “You did a good job there, Jacoby.” Inaba said she was impressed. “You have incredible artistry, you have a way of connecting to the music,” she said. “That was just hot, sensual and artistic.” Jones earned 24 points.
Wynonna Judd: The country music legend’s rock-infused samba fell flat with judges. Inaba said the dance didn’t demonstrate improvement for Judd, while Tonioli said it “was a bit sedated for a performance.” Goodman pointed out that Judd sometimes went the wrong way and said the performance lacked hip action. “Well, you’re like Mount Rushmore, you look magnificent but you don’t move,” he said. Judd earned 15 points.
Sean Lowe: Judges thought the reality TV star’s cha cha cha was full of fun, even though they acknowledged that his footwork needed improvement. Goodman said Lowe came onto the dance floor “full of energy, full of attack,” and called it a great attitude. Tonioli said Lowe definitely entertained, and Inaba agreed that Lowe performed with “incredible gusto.” Lowe earned 21 points.
Zendaya: The Disney star performed a Venice-themed Viennese waltz that she dedicated to her grandmother. Inaba said Zendaya had an incredible lyrical quality to all of her movements. “The emotional connection to every single move is beyond your years. You’re just fascinating to watch,” Inaba added. Tonioli said the routine was “as enchanting and charming as Venice in the moonlight.” Zendaya earned 24 points.
Kellie Pickler and Derek Hough: 25
Jacoby Jones and Karina Smirnoff: 24
Zendaya and Val Chmerkovskiy: 24
Aly Raisman and Mark Ballas: 23
Victor Ortiz and Lindsey Arnold: 23
Ingo Rademacher and Kym Johnson: 21
Lisa Vanderpump and Gleb Savchenko: 21
Sean Lowe and Peta Murgatroyd: 21
Andy Dick and Sharna Burgess: 18
D.L. Hughley and Cheryl Burke: 16
Wynonna Judd and Tony Dovolani: 15