HOLLYWOOD -- The "Dancing with the Stars" semifinalists have to survive two dances and a double elimination if they want to make it to the season 29 finale. The remaining six couples performed two individual routines: first a redemption dance of a style they struggled with earlier in the season (chosen by the judges), and then a new style. The competition is tighter than ever and we saw a flurry of '10s' from the judges table. In the end, two couples will be eliminated, sending four into the final round.
Here's a rundown of the night's scores, from highest to lowest:
Nev Schulman- 60 out of 60
Redemption Foxtrot - "Sign of the Times" by Harry Styles; 30 out of 30
Contemporary - "If the World Was Ending" by JP Saxe and Julia Michaels; 30 out of 30
Derek Hough was the judge who chose their redemption and offered some tips and tricks to help Nev improve his round one dance (tuck in that tush!). After the performance Derek said Nev was in control and danced a pure, classic routine.
Dance #2 had the judges at a complete loss for words. Both Derek and Bruno Tonioli were so mesmerized they both said they got lost in watching and forgot they were working. Carrie Ann Inaba praised the tough choreography Jenna worked up for the routine, and applauded that she didn't tone it back for Nev; and he delivered.
Kaitlyn Bristowe- 60 out of 60
Redemption Paso Doble - "Hanuman" by Rodrigo Y Gabriela; 30 out of 30
Contemporary - "Cowboy Take Me Away" by The Chicks; 30 out of 30
Carrie Ann was the judge to help with redemption, and it allowed them all to clear the air after a rough season. Carrie Ann told Kaitlyn her critiques are never personal, and are only meant to help. She helped show Kaitlyn some stronger sharper arm movement, and asked to see more drama and intensity. Kaitlyn joked that it's the first time someone ever told her she didn't have enough drama! Carrie Ann thought the routine was amazing from the moment they started; passionate and powerful, fast and furious. Dance #2 was a tribute to her childhood best friend who died in an accident 17 years ago. The judges all agreed Kaitlyn danced from her heart, and thought their connection as a team really showed through.
Justina Machado- 58 out of 60
Redemption Tango - "El Tango de Roxanne" from "Moulin Rouge;" 28 out of 30
Contemporary - "Holding Out for a Hero" by Ella Mae Bowen, Bonnie Tyler; 30 out of 30
Derek was the judge assigning/helping with the re-do this week. She was too "hoppy" the first time; Derek wants her to be smooth, and glide around the dance floor. She was excited about his help and clearly listened, since she got her first perfect score. Derek raised her attack, passion, energy, and frame... and no hops!
Dance #2 was all about the trust these two have built over the season. Bruno thought the dance showed freedom; Carrie said magic happened; and Derek loved the emotion they brought to the ballroom.
Skai Jackson- 57 out of 60
Redemption Cha - "Move Your Feet" by Junior Senior; 27 out of 30
Viennese Waltz - "Lonely" by Noah Cyrus; 30 out of 30
Bruno asked for the Cha redemption. This is the dance that the judges called a disaster the first time around. Basically, Skai went blank and she got her lowest score of the season. She said she was nervous to do it again, but with some important hip-action coaching from Bruno, she felt better. Bruno was over the top with excitement after the routine, saying his little golden girl brought some extra bling with 24-carat hip action. He called the dance much better, clean, sharp, and strong.
Dance #2 had her feeling inspired to be strong for other young girls; she's proud to be a role model. Derek said the frame was gorgeous, she and Alan were connected. Carrie Ann thought the dance was filled with grace and determination, but also showed vulnerability that took her to a new level. Bruno liked the poise, elegance, and emotional connection they had throughout the dance.
Johnny Weir- 57 out of 60
Redemption Salsa - "X" by Jonas Brothers; 27 out of 30
Jazz - "I Lived" by One Republic; 30 out of 30
Johnny was in the bottom two the first time he tried the salsa; Carrie Ann wanted to show how far he's come over the past few weeks. After the performance, Carrie Ann said Johnny looked stronger, and much more in control.
Dance #2 and a jazz style let Johnny strut his stuff. He said DWTS made him feel alive, and kicked up the adrenaline he needed in his life. Carrie Ann said it looked like they were dancing on cloud nine; Derek said he could feel the love and respect Johnny and Britt have for each other; and Bruno thought the dance was clean, clear and dynamic.
Nelly- 56 out of 60
Redemption Paso Doble - "Run Boy Run" by Woodkid; 26 out of 30
Jive - "Jump Jive An' Wail" by The Brian Setzer Orchestra; 30 out of 30
Bruno is the one to help coach a redemption Paso Doble. He wants to help Nelly refine his moves, and not be so robotic. In the ballroom, Bruno told Nelly he used the right amount of restraint and power.
Dance #2 is the super tough jive but Nelly pushes through a rough rehearsal week. He appreciates that Daniela sees his potential. Bruno said "Nelly nailed it"; Carrie Ann thought this was his breakthrough performance, done at just the right time in the competition.
Host Tyra Banks told us the top three couples that are safe: Nelly and Daniela, Nev and Jenna, Kaitlyn and Artem.
That meant the bottom three included Skai and Alan, Johnny and Britt, Justina and Sasha. Johnny was the first eliminated. The judges then had to do the save: They all chose Justina so Skai was the second elimination.
Next week: the finals!
'Dancing with the Stars' recap: a flurry of 10s in the semi-finals, 2 couples go home, 4 head to finale
The competition is tighter than ever and the six semi-finalists strut their stuff in order to make the season 29 finale.
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