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‘Dancing With the Stars’ season 18 week 9 recap

Charlie White was eliminated on 'Dancing With the Stars'
Photo by Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images for EJAF

May 12 was the season’s semi-final of ‘Dancing With the Stars.’ Each couple performed two dances in different styles. The theme for the night was “American Icons.” Choreographer Kenny Ortega was the guest judge. The show also featured a Macy’s Stars of Dance piece, starring Derek Hough. Here’s what each couple danced:

First Round

  • Candace Cameron Bure and Mark Ballas: Their waltz got off to a great start. Candace’s lines and frame are absolutely lovely. But, she made a mistake later in the dance and that seemed to dent her confidence a bit. Bruno reminded her not to let mistakes show on her face and to keep dancing through them. Score: 34
  • Charlie White and Sharna Burgess: Charlie shines in elegant numbers, and this Frank Sinatra-inspired foxtrot was no exception. He’s smooth and his lines were clean. His solo at the end may have been a too-obvious nod to his skating, but it’s superbly executed. Score: 40
  • Amy Purdy and Derek Hough: Amy got new prosthetics for their quickstep. As usual, she proved herself capable of rising to any challenge Derek can set her. Her footwork is quick, bouncy and musical. Score: 39
  • James Maslow and Peta Murgatroyd: This cha cha really sparkled. James overcame his awkwardness (maybe a little too much). The judges loved it. Score: 40
  • Meryl Davis and Maksim Chmerkovskiy: Maksim really shined in their jive. His movements are a great combination of big and controlled. I thought Meryl looked a little hesitant, but the judges loved it, so maybe I’m being hypercritical. Carrie Ann also pointed out that Meryl’s costume didn’t do anything to enhance her movement. Score: 40

Second Round

  • Candace and Mark: I would never have thought of jazz as Candace’s style, but she carried off this Fosse-inspired number with aplomb. She hit every pose with intelligence and musicality. Score: 38
  • Charlie and Sharna: Okay, so maybe picking a Notorious B.I.G song wasn’t the best choice for this samba, but there were a lot of issues. As Sharna said, the hip hop moves she put in the dance didn’t work well on Charlie’s body. He missed the general attitude of the piece, but it was technically sound. Score: 36
  • Amy and Derek: Their jazz routine was good, but not Amy’s best dance. The use of a table was clever and mostly well-done, but there are a few points where Amy and Derek are off. Score: 39
  • James and Peta: James showed off a lot of improvement to his lines in their rumba. And, Peta seems to have given him more to do this. The judges point out that his hands need work, though. Score: 36
  • Meryl and Maksim: Their waltz was a standout. Meryl has a real flair for making their storylines believable. Her technique was clean, and she and Maks were perfectly in sync. Score: 40

Charlie and Sharna were eliminated.