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Singers hit highest notes on 'Dancing'

Hollywood Wrap with George Pennacchio
September 21, 2009 12:00:00 AM PDT
Season nine of "Dancing With the Stars" kicked off Monday night, featuring 16 couples. Half of them danced Monday night.The eight male stars and their professional partners opened the season. And when the first night's dancing was done, the two singers had hit the highest notes with the judges.

Aaron Carter and his partner, Karina Smirnoff, top the leaderboard and all three judges say they see plenty of potential.

"Within this competition, I just want to keep my composure, make sure I listen to her," said Aaron. "She's really sharp. She knows her craft and I respect that."

Donny Osmond, who ended the night in second place, respects his partner, too. He'd better -- at times, she makes him call her "Miss Kym."

"Kym has a cane," Donny pointed out.

"I do. I have a cane," replied Kym. "I don't think you've seen the cane yet."

"And she prods me with this cane: 'Tighten that butt! Straighten that back!'" said Donny.

"I walk around him and I change my expression, too, when I have this cane," said Kym.

"Totally different woman with this cane," said Donny. "And I got to tell [George] about the duct tape. She duct-taped my back the other day. It's like I'm taking dance lessons from Tony Soprano."

"I've changed," said Kym.

"Iron Chef's" Mark Decascos and his partner, Lacey Schwimmer, are just a point behind, in third place. He says she's a great teacher, but she's tough.

"She shakes her booty a mile a minute, right? And then says, 'Stop looking at that!'" said Mark.

"'Look at my eyes!'" said Lacey.

"Well, then stop shaking your booty!" said Mark. "You know, it's very confusing."

Snowboarder Louie Vito and his partner landed in fourth place, but with good marks for his good posture.

"I'm not afraid to just kind of step out of my comfort zone and do this," said Louie. "And, you know, I'm just going to be me and that's all. Pretty much have fun and learn some ballroom dancing."

Ultimate fighter Chuck Liddell is next on the leaderboard. His partner calls him an "unstoppable machine."

"I'm going to keep improving and keep getting better," said Chuck. "The entertainment part will stay there, hopefully, but my steps and actual dance ability will get better."

Tom DeLay shook his booty and danced his way to sixth place with partner Cheryl Burke. But after the show, his feet looked like they were in big trouble.

When asked if we should worry about those feet, Tom replied, "Well, the doctor was just here and he told me I'm probably going to break it at some point, but I'm going to dance till they break."

Football star Michael Irvin fumbled with the judges, tying for last place, alongside Ashley Hamilton.

Hamilton is just hoping to get another chance.

"Next week's going to be no holds barred for us," said Ashley. "It's going to be all performance. I'm passed the counting ... I'm passed all that now. Now it's all just about 'Grrrrrr!'"

Michael Irvin had to leave the press line early for a family obligation, so we didn't get a chance to talk to him.

The female stars take the dance floor Tuesday night.

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