“Dancing With the Stars” is back tonight with a brand new set of celebrities paired with pros competing for the mirror-ball trophy on abc at 8 p.m..
I am excited to see a new crop of dance hopefuls enter the ballroom. It will be fun to look for the new partnering dynamics, the improvement over the season and how each celebrity enjoys the process.
The professional dancers that draw me in are the ones that move with purpose, power and precision.
Purpose: Knowing what story your body is meant to tell in response to moving with a partner and music.
Power: Controlled power and fluidity to create resistance in extensions which can turn a simple walk into a defining movement.
Precision: Hitting or accenting certain moves to create lovely pictures from the relaxed hand to the pointed toe.
Every professional is brilliant with Derek Hough, Mark Ballas and Peta Murgatroyd being standouts for me. This season I am looking for new pro, Lindsay Arnold and a new troop member, Whitney Carson from “So You Think You Can Dance.”
However, having purpose, power and precision isn’t everything. The rehearsal footage and interviews show celebrities as real people. I am looking for passion, personality, and persistence.
Passion: Someone who is willing to invest emotions into dance and is willing to be vulnerable.
Personality: Bringing playfulness to the dance floor with a carefree abandonment that is unique to them.
Persistence: Striving to continue to take constructive criticism and be open to growth.
I am looking out for Zendaya, Dorothy Hamill, Kelli Pickler, Jacoby Jones, and Aly Raisman.
Physicality: How two bodies move as one and relate to each other.
Patience: Needed from both pro and celebrity as they grow as a team and in ability.
Process: The journey the two people go on during rehearsal and on taping nights.
Acting can be like ballroom dancing where your “scene partner” is your fellow dancer. I love to respond off what my fellow actor is giving me in that moment. The focus is not on you but on the relationship and trust needed to move forward even if it is in an unexpected direction.
Overall, it can be the emotion, the fun, the chemistry and willingness to learn and entertain that people respond to the most. I think the show excels at showcasing entertainment which trumps technical ability or dance knowledge.
DWTS certainly has created the right formula for magic with professionals moving with power, people (judges and hosts included) with panache and partnerships primed for playful performances. I am looking forward to all of that tonight.
Other things to watch out for this season: The new added dance styles such as contemporary, the costumes, choreography, the theme nights and the results shows performances.