Princesses on Dancing with the Stars

If you're not familiar with Dancing with the Stars, it is star-studded dance competition show on ABC that is already in its 25th season. Is anyone starting to feel old? I am not a regular viewer of the show, as I do not like reality shows or competitions, but I do enjoy their Disney Night. Once a year, all of the couples dress up in Disney costumes and dance to various dance remixes of Disney songs, complete with sets and props. Since ABC is owned by Disney, they go all out with these dance numbers, making the performances as entertaining as a scene from a Broadway play. This year's Disney Night, which contained three princess songs, was definitely not my favorite. Here is a summary of this year's Dancing with the Stars princess highlights from the perspective of someone who knows nothing about dance and doesn't like competition.

First up are Vanessa Lachey and Maksin Chmerkovksy performing a French waltz of "Someday My Prince Will Come" from Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. I thought this performance was pretty enjoyable. They built a replica of the coffin that the dwarfs made for Snow White with gorgeous beams of faux sunlight streaming down on it. At the beginning of the waltz, the prince wakes her from her slumber. He gently places her back on the coffin at the end, creating a visual metaphor that she is only with him in her dreams, adding depth to the performance. I absolutely loved her costume. It was a perfect representation of the one from the movie with sparkles to make it more theatrical for the stage. The prince's costume, on the other hand, was far less screen accurate but still acceptable. The dance was very romantic, like something right out of a Disney movie.

Jordan Fisher and Lindsay Arnold's foxtrot to "You're Welcome" from Moana, on the other hand, seemed to have a great deal less effort put into it. Personally, I was not a huge fan of this song in the movie, and I like Lin Manuel-Miranda's pop remix even less. Therefore, I didn't find it that entertaining to watch a couple dancing to it. It also bothered me that Jordan's costume does not even look remotely inspired by Maui, which is a problem because they are dancing to Maui's song. Lindsay's costume, on the other hand, is a decent more mature take on Moana's outfit while still staying true to her look from the movie. It's odd seeing a Moana costume on a blond woman, but I still got the idea. My favorite thing about this number was the projection effects. The palm trees projected on the floor gave a neat shadow-like effect, and the images on the screen were very artsy and fun. However, there was definitely something lacking about this number. Last year's performance of "How Far I'll Go" by Simone Biles and Sasha Barber with a live rendition by Auli'i Cravalho herself was superior to this in every way possible. Check it out below.

I saved my favorite princess for last. Sasha Pieterse and Gleb Savchenko performed a Rumba to "Kiss the Girl" from The Little Mermaid. The set for this performance was the most impressive of the night, in my opinion. They built a full rowboat for the stage with water projections and a miniature island for Ariel to sit on. Their dance was very sensual with a variety of moves to keep things interesting. To be honest, though, I thought Ariel's wig looked kind of cheap. Disney could have done better. I also wish they had made her corset black to better match the dress from the movie. Anna's dress from Frozen was so similar that it looks like she stole it from Ariel. I'd like to see Ariel's "Kiss the Girl" dress make more of a comeback to remind people that she wore it first. It was nice how the slits showed off her legs in a sexy but tasteful manner and that they included her hairbow accessory, even though it should have been bigger. In my opinion, this was the second-best performance of the night next to the retro "Steamboat Willie" jazz dance from Victoria Arlen and Valentin Chmerkovskiy that looked like it came straight out of a 1920s silent film.

Overall, I thought tonight's Disney Night was very weak compared to the ones I've seen in the past. The costumes were lackluster, the set designs were lazy, and the song choices were mediocre. Some performances from previous years that I liked better include Marla Maples and Tony Dovolani dancing to "Part of Your World," Nastia Liukin and Derek Hough dancing to "Love Is an Open Door," Nancy Kerrigan and Artem Chigvintseve dancing to "That's How You Know," and Ginger Zee and Valentin Chmerkovskiy dancing to "Belle." All of these dance numbers had noticeably more effort placed in the costumes, sets, and production values than any of the ones I saw tonight. I'll post one of them below to show you what I mean.


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