“Dancing With the Stars” pro Anna Trebunskaya weighs in on each of the week’s three performances. The “DWTS” veteran knows what it takes to dazzle on the dance floor and gives her take on the dances, the choreography and the judges’ scores. You can find her on Twitter @atrebunskaya.
You just can’t beat an opening number with a legend! What an amazing start to “DWTS” Monday night featuring Cher. I loved how everything flowed and moved. You really felt like you were at her concert. It was just as entertaining and exhilarating to watch in the audience as it was watching through the TV (and I was lucky Monday night to do both).
Corbin Bleu: I think this was a wonderful Argentine tango routine. It’s tough to open the show and start first, but Corbin did so well the whole season that I really can’t cut him any slack. I don’t think this was his best. It lacked finesse, there were shaky moments and missteps. I really think it was under-rehearsed, which is exactly what their story was this week in the video before their dance. A tad bit disappointing, but life happens sometimes and I hope he has more time to focus this week.
Leah Remini: There was a really lovely story behind their dance and that set up the whole tone for their routine. She had some great lines in open, out-of-the-frame moves. She was a tad bit timid in her movement in close frame with Tony. Leah needs to learn to use her whole foot and roll through heel to toe to create movement. Also, in the ballroom section of dances, she has to sit lower in her knees. I still think this was a success. Keep your head up, Leah. You’re doing great and look fantastic, too.
Brant Daugherty: I think he improved so much and has been working so hard since the beginning of the show. This week he gets the most improved week-to-week celebrity. His foxtrot had a beautiful movement across the floor. He had a strong frame and a great upper-body posture. I agree with the judges. He always has a lot of content in his choreography. This was clean and precise. I really enjoyed watching his journey throughout the whole season. I’m sad to see him go this week, but I feel that was something I predicted a few weeks back.
Elizabeth Berkley Lauren: She is putting so much pressure on herself! Don’t do it, Elizabeth! There are enough factors that will stress you out in this show. Give yourself a little permission to relax. Maybe because it was a week of jazz for her, and she’s known as a Jazz dancer in the past, all that extra mental stuff kicked in. Well, it was a good routine overall but because of the mental pressure she was stiff at places and forgot to breathe in the moment. It felt forced and strained. Her pirouettes are the best out of all the celebrities. The girl can kick! It’s definitely a learning curve for her. You’re good enough, Elizabeth. Take the job seriously but remember that you’re a human, after all. She had the best or worst (depends on how you interpreted it) judge’s comment from Cher, who said, “I like when women are strong and don’t take s***, you know.”
Bill Engvall: This was my favorite performance of the night and my favorite choreography of the night. Sure, Bill is not the most technical and talented dancer but this is how my uncle, dad or next door neighbor would dance, especially to “Strong enough” by Cher. The entertaining factor of this routine was 100 percent. The crowd just went crazy in the ballroom for Bill! There were well-executed lifts and some over-the-top, but appropriate, somehow, facial expressions. It was just pure fun. Bill is also the biggest surprise of the night. He didn’t get eliminated so clearly his charm is working.
Jack Osbourne: I’m so happy that Jack enjoys dancing. You can just see how he respects the art of the dance, appreciates how hard it really is and truly gets happy when things finally click in his own dancing. What a great attitude. I love it. Tango is another one of those dramatic dances that goes against Jack’s personality. He did much better though with tango than a few weeks back with the Paso Doble. Maybe because he didn’t try to be like Val but was Jack doing the tango to the best of his ability? I feel the challenge of moving through the heels in the forward walks was upon Jack this week and he didn’t always conquer it. Keep working on it Jack. Bit by bit you will get it.
Amber Riley: I think she is such a fantastic dancer and usually is pretty spot-on in technique. This week, however, I felt her footwork lacked precision. I expect her to be good enough to place her feet neatly and use them as paintbrushes on the floor. She attacked the whole routine with a fierceness of a panther. Her arms were really beautiful and strong and the connection to Derek was there. So, overall, it was a gorgeous performance. She also looked stunning – The Best Costume this week goes to Amber.
Corbin Bleu vs. Elizabeth Berkley Lauren Doing the Cha Cha: They both were fierce and solid. I think Elizabeth was a little bit stronger in lines, but Corbin was faster and more rhythmical in his movements.
Brant Daugherty vs. Leah Remini Doing the Rumba: I actually thought Leah did so much better in this dance. She was able to let go and just dance. She had beautiful fluid hip action and a very relaxed but presentable posture. I liked that Brant brought a really solid, consistent rumba. It was a tad bit stiff, in my opinion.
Jack Osbourne vs. Bill Engvall Doing the Disco: Even though Bill already did a disco earlier in the show, somehow dancing to a different song messed with him. He wasn’t as connected to Emma as in his actual routine. Jack, on the other hand, did really well. He has this natural smoothness about him that makes his lines and gestures look organic and easy on the eye.
It’s getting harder and harder to predict on the celebrity who’s is most likely to be eliminated. You would think that Bill is the next one, but he is making it every week and it’s clear now that he has huge fan support. I think that some of the better dancers may be going before him, like Elisabeth or Jack. Another week will show.