Maya’s Mirrorball: Music Video Night

In this weekly blog, senior Maya Silberman shares her favorites and flops for each episode of her favorite show, Dancing With the Stars.
In this weekly blog, senior Maya Silberman shares her favorites and flops for each episode of her favorite show, Dancing With the Stars.
Maya Silberman

Viewers were taken back across decades of music on Tuesday’s episode: Music Video Night. 

Paula Abdul was the guest judge, harkening back to her choreography for Janet Jackson, George Michael, and Madonna. 

The night was kicked off by Lele and Brandon, with a number to Shakira’s “Whenever, Wherever.” Lele killed it. She was clean, sharp and killed both the dance aspect and the character of Shakira. The choreography was fantastic on Brandon’s part, and it was a mesmerizing dance, with skillful incorporation of the background dancers.

Ariana and Pasha followed with a dance to Brittany Spears’ “Slave For You.” This was yet another fantastic dance from Ariana and Pasha. They nailed the choreography, and the costuming was amazing. They also did a good job incorporating the moves from the video, with clean moves and clean formations with additional pros. Ariana brought the spirit of Britney to the stage!

Harry and Rylee were up next, and this was a huge instance of fans disagreeing with the judges. Harry and Rylee danced a jazz to NSYNC, with Harry dressing up as Justin Timberlake, wig and all. Harry really broke out of his shell, moved his body and brought the boy band energy to the performance. He was energetic and entertaining, and it seemed like a breakthrough for him. The judges, however, gave Harry 6’s, significantly lower than he deserved. They continue to give the same comments every week, and they aren’t landing with Harry, even though he improves each week. It would stand to say that their comments, such as adding breath and connective tissue, don’t always translate to non-dancers, something they should take into account.

Jason and Daniella harkened back to a classic AHA song with another solid performance. Their jazz was clean and the character was there. The choreography wasn’t as challenging or intriguing as some past dances, but they nailed the challenge of music video night and were crisp while doing it. The judges were split on their decisions, half believing it was underwhelming and have thinking they nailed it. Both were partially correct, but it doesn’t change that Jason and Daniella are still one of the best pairs of the season.

Alyson and Sasha were up next with a reference back to a classic Christina Aguilera video. This was absolutely Alyson’s best dance, and she stepped up tot he level of the other dancers. She was energetic, charismatic, and clean, with challenging choreography.

They were followed by Val and Xochitl, who had a fumble in their “Hollaback Girl” routine. The beginning was an amazing jazz, with interesting choreography and a sharpness we haven’t seen from Xochitl yet. The fumble with getting a jacket and hat on for Xochitl lowered her scores and threw her off slightly for the rest of the routine. Honestly, even with that, she was still at or above the level of her competitors. 

After Xochitl and Val were Artem and Charity, who delivered a solid but not spectacular tribute to Janet Jackson. The dance was solid, with good choreography, but it was lacking the punch and sharpness that has been missing from the past few dances. Technically, Charity is still one of the cleanest dancers in the competition.

The last pair dance was Peta and Barry with a quickstep. To be frank, for a quickstep was rather slow. Some energy and urgency was lacking, but Barry still brought a wholesome presence to the stage and was consistent.

Following that, the contestants split into teams for team dances.

The first team was team Young N’style, with Xochitl, Harry, Lele, and Charity, along with their respective partners. They absolutely demolished it! Harry brought the energy and sparkle, and had a second breakthrough moment of the night. For Charity, this was where she nailed the hard-hitting moves, and Lele and Xochitl continued to bring the energy. The entire team killed it, coming together after for Harry, with Derek even giving Harry a hug. Their perfect score could not have been more deserved.

The second team was team 4 Everybody, who also delivered a great performance. Their dance was much more classical ballroom, which along with the slower song, is why they didn’t have the pizzaz the other team did. They were still all very strong, just not quite as energizing and fun as the other team, which reflected in their scores.

This week’s elimination of Lele was a shocker to all, including the judges. She was amazing, and there are multiple other dancers who haven’t delivered the level of dance Lele has. She should not have gone home, and will be missed on the dancefloor.

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