Cue that theme music...

Posted: Tuesday, October 06, 2009 by Travis Cody in

It's live from Hollywood!

It's Latin night with Samba and Rumba, or as we sometimes call it...The Festival of Tiny Costumes!

How appropriate that we would get Samba just after the 2016 Summer Olympics were awarded to Rio de Janeiro. Samba is the party dance from Brazil's Rio Carnival characterized by effortless and carefree knee action, body sway, and pendulum motion with light bouncing steps. One of my favorite movements is the Samba roll, which pulls the woman's body right against the man's in a rolling movement from the waste up. The step circles the dance floor. I shall repeat a terrific demonstration of Samba with a clip of Bryan Watson and Carmen Vincelj, former World Latin American champions.

Rumba is a slow tempo dance that features erotic and sensual hip movements. This dance is called the vertical expression of a horizontal desire. This isn't one of my favorite styles, as too many dancers substitute a lot of posing in place of actual dance movements. So I have a most excellent clip of Cheryl Burke and Maksim Chmerkovskiy dancing, rather than posing, a beautiful Rumba to a live performance from Julio Iglesias.

Len has returned, so let's see how our 13 remaining pairs do.

Mark and Lacey dance Rumba. Mark must demonstrate control in this dance. I think they were undone by the music, which was too fast and not conducive to any kind of sexy dancing. They had classic Rumba elements and Mark performed them well. But that wasn't a steamy sexy dance at all. It wasn't smooth and fluid, and the chemistry was lacking between Mark and Lacey. That's a shame because I thought this could be a break out dance for him. He has all the talent to be able to do well in this competition, but he and Lacey have not found their stride yet. Judges say 6's across for a total of 18. Very unfortunate. I thought Lacey's choreography was very good, but the entire package just didn't work.

Joanna and Derek dance Samba. She had much better control of her legses this time around. Less rubbery and more firm...more like a swimsuit model's legses should look. But I still think she's getting by with a lot of hippy hippy shake. Her dancing isn't doing anything for me. It was a good effort, full of classic Samba elements. She had a few footwork bobbles, but in general it was a good performance. Derek had strong choreography and her musicality was much better than last week. This was definitely an improvement. I'm still not connecting with her though. Judges say 7,8,8 for a total of 23.

Mya and Dmitry dance Rumba. Mmmmmmmmmm. Sexy, sultry, steamy, sensual and romantic. She is amazing. This may be the most impressive Rumba I've seen on the show from a female celebrity. It had classic Rumba elements and it was performed incredibly well. They actually told a story with it. They danced instead of posing, and still managed to accentuate exquisite lines. There's absoltuely no pleasing Len...he thought it was too complex. Nuh-uh. For me, that was a perfect Rumba. The amount of content worked for me. Judges say 10,7,10 for a total of 27. Once again, I think Len seems to be watching different dances. Perhaps someone who knows a little more about Rumba can explain his problem with this dance. You might want to compare Mya's dance with Natalie's and see if you agree with Len that Natalie should have scored 1 point higher.

Melissa and Mark dance Samba. I suspect she's going to struggle with this. She has to let go and feel the party. The dance started very well. She's still not extending with her legs. Her upper body is right on, but she's missing in her lower body. It's putting her slightly behind the music and she's not helping sustain Mark's energy. This was a good effort, and it might be as well as she can perform. If she could ever find the key to connecting her upper and lower body, she'd be on her way. Judges say 6,6,7 for a total of 19. There's still something about Melissa that I like, and I want her to do well.

Louie and Chelsie dance Rumba. Little Louie grows up. It wasn't as smooth as it could have been, but they definitely had the chemistry working between them. It was sexy andthey definitely have great chemistry, probably because they are the same age. Well done. Chelsie did a fine job with choreography and helping Louie understand how to lead her through the dance. They had the performance down. He still needs to work more on his footwork and making his movement smooth and fluid. Louie's enjoyment of this particular dance was evident, and that made all the difference in how much I enjoyed it. Judges say 8,5,7 for a total of 20. I don't understand Len tonight.

Debi and Maks dance Samba. Maks put so much classic Samba in the beginnning of that dance that I was smiling right away. Unforunately, Debi looked too stiff in her upper body. She looked a little bit lost throughout, almost like she was dizzy in the turns. But as well as it seemed to start, the dance just didn't have any splash. It was missing the party flavor. Maks did a lot of dancing around Debi, with large movements to hide some of the issues she had. Unfortunately, she's not likely to get a high enough score to overcome the fact that her fanbase just isn't as large as some of the others. Judges say 6,5,6 for a total of 17.

Donny and Kym dance Rumba. Do you know what a nervous squee sounds like? I didn't either, but I think that's the sound Pam made. She clasped her hands under her chin and sat very still. She didn't hold her breath, but she could have if it had been necessary. Now she sighed. This was a very sweet Rumba. It was missing the hip action it needed and it certainly wasn't steamy or sexy or overtly sensual. But he performed the steps and kept it wholesome. Now a Rumba isn't designed to be wholesome, but a Rumba danced by an Osmond most certainly will be. He had a few technical issues with his footwork. Carrie Ann had the was genuine. Pam is pleased. Judges say 7's across for a total of 21. Excellent score for what is likely to be his most difficult dance.

Michael and Anna D dance Samba. He lost a lot of the discipline and technique he brought last week. This Samba was a little boring actually. He didn't extend any of the movements and his timing was off. And his performance seemed to affect Anna as well. She looked off. They seemed to enjoy the dance, but he needs to extend his arms and really step through the movement. His footwork was horrendous. His legs were too loose and that affected his hip movement, which was lacking. Basically it was the kind of dance you'd see in a club, loose and gangly, and that's just not good enough. He seems to be getting it in rehearsal but not taking it to the live performance. Judges say 5,4,5 for a total of 14.

Natalie and Alec dance Rumba. Natalie's biggest problem is that she gets embarrassed. If she can connect with Alec, she can do this dance. And she's got it. Those problems she was having with her arms...solved. She was fluid and graceful, sensuous and sexy. She looked as comfortable on the ballroom floor during that dance as she might in the pool. She had the right expressions throughout. Her footwork was excellent and under control. Her legs were outstanding and that helped her get the proper hip action. I really loved that dance. This is a breakthrough dance for her. Very well done. Judges say 9,8,9 for a total of 26. Excellent!

Chuck and Anna T dance Samba. This could be a disaster. OK...big tough UFC guy gets pedicure with daughter. All I can say for the dance is that he tried and seeemd to have fun with it. And he did smile. He actually did dance a few steps. He did that about as well as he could do it and the audience enjoyed it. Of course it was plodding and rough, and there was pretty much no hip action at all, but it was also a proper Samba at least in terms of choreography. He made a solid back drop for Anna to dance against. Judges say 6,5,6 for a total of 17. Not the worst score of the night. I think he got points for entertaining the crowd and for trying.

Aaron and Karina dance Rumba. I thought he would do better with this dance. I didn't care for the choreography and that surprises me because I usually enjoy Karina's Rumba. They didn't seem to have the chemistry and connection this week. He wasn't smooth, and that took the sensuality out of it. It was a good performance, but he over-played it. It was too hard. He didn't have enough hip action. And he struggled with his arms, extending the movements smoothly from his shoulders through his elbows and hands. But this is a good thing for him. He has a great attitude and he'll take the notes and apply the direction to the next performance. Judges say 8,6,7 for a total of 21. Tough score, but I get the feeling he'll bounce back.

Tom and Cheryl are scheduled to dance Samba. Unfortunately the pre-stress fracture Tom had in his left foot developed into a full stress fracture. And then in compensating for the pain he ended up having trouble with his other foot. So now he's got stress fractures in both feet, but he tried to dance anyway. He really struggled. It looked like he was focused on keeping his feet under him, so the hip action was non-existent. It was very careful, which I can't really blame him for. It had to be painful just to take a step, much less string a bunch of steps together to music. It wasn't a great dance, but I admire that he tried. And I also give Cheryl a lot of credit for her choreography and for getting him through it. Judges say 6,4,5 for a total of 15.

Kelly and Louis dance Samba. She's got to dance with confidence and not worry about what anyone else thinks. If she gives it her best effort, she can be happy with what she's done. And, if she gives it her best effort, it's going to be good. I did not like the music at all. Louis' choreography was excellent, but it seemed a bit too slow. Kelly bounced back like a real trooper this week and had a good performance. There were a couple of spots where she made mistakes, but this week she danced through the mistakes much better and didn't let them affect her as much. She stayed focused on Louis and let him help her through the panic. Judges say 7,6,7 for a total of 20. That's a good score, and she had a much better attitude after the dance and scores.

Here's the leader board:

27 Mya and Dmitry
26 Natalie and Alec
23 Joanna and Derek
21 Donny and Kym
21 Aaron and Karina
20 Louie and Chelsie
20 Kelly and Louis
19 Melissa and Mark
18 Mark and Lacey
17 Chuck and Anna T
17 Debi and Maks
15 Tom and Cheryl
14 Michael and Anna D

Of course Pam voted for Donny. I was really impressed by Mya and Natalie. I split my votes between those two ladies and Kelly.

Tune in tonight for results. I think I heard that Queen Latifa will be in the ballroom.

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  1. Dianne says:

    I continue to really like the skate board kid although this was his least good performance (how's that for bad grammar)

    and I love Kelly

    none of the top notch dancers do it for me, I can't get behind a leader but it's early

    DeLay's costume was absurd and he's really starting to give me the creeps

    Donny and Bruno and then Donny and Aaron (and that bathrobe shirt!!) kinda annoyed me. It was too campy and bordered on mocking especially when Donny said he can't ever go back to Utah now. but then again I have always felt the Osmonds talk too much and do their best to hog the spotlight

    I hope Debi Mazar gets to stay tonight

  1. Akelamalu says:

    I'm having a little bit of a sweat here thinking about Donny dancing the Rumba! :0

  1. jennifer says:

    Please give Pam a hug for me. I am completely charmed by her nervous squee!

  1. Bond says:

    Man...even Nancy said "well Mr. Crankypants" is back from his week off

    Kelly really needs to have more confidence. I wonder if that is a result of living with such an icon as her dad (and now mom's emergence as a 'celebrity' and her past problems with substance abuse...

    As the judges said..when she does it she nails it..

    I, like Dianne, was really creeped out by the Donnie/Bruno was too off character...what was Pam's take?

    Tom's time is coming to a close...the costumes were really creepy...and he is just not connecting with me..that said, Debi does not seem to have a fan base...and Michael really was pitiful with two good feet...

  1. I missed it all last night so thanks for the vids!

  1. Marilyn says:

    I think I would love this show...

    I almost got to watch it while I was in Denver, but Hubby overruled me.

  1. Linda says:

    As I was watching the show last night in between 911 calls, I was thinking of Pam when Donny came on to dance knowing that she'd be glued to the TV set when the show eventually came on over on your side of the country. Nice to see I was right!

    I'm not sure what was up with Len either, he seemed like a real grouch and to me he appeared to be overly critical of just about everyone.

  1. Travis says:

    Dianne: But that's the Osmonds. They've always been campy.

    Akelamalu: So did Pam.

    Jennifer: I can do that!

    V: I wonder if after dancing last night, whether Tom will hang it up. There's really no point to continuing on those feet.

    Starr: You're welcome!

    Marilyn: It's a fun show and I'll bet you would like it.

    Linda: Yup, you were right. She's hooked.

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