'Dancing with the Stars' Premiere: The First Dances
'Dancing with the Stars' Premiere: The First Dances
Laurel Brown
Laurel Brown
Senior Writer, BuddyTV
Welcome to the 11th season premiere of Dancing with the Stars!

This season boasts some of the show's most highly-anticipated stars, and this is the place to follow along as the dancing excitement gets under way. Throughout tonight's two-hour premiere, I'll be updating this site with a live recap and commentary. Forget what the judge's say - what do experts know about ballroom dancing anyway? Stay here and you'll get a real, non-expert opinion.



Still here? Cool.

So let's get ready for this season's stars! And what stars they are! A 90s singing sensation...  A Super Bowl star... That kid from the Disney Channel... The daughter of a certain political figure... Carol Brady... Even The Situation.

One thing's for sure - we won't be able to put any of them in the corner.

Tonight, half of the couples will dance to the cha-cha-cha, while the other couples have Viennese waltzes. We'll get scores from the judges after each dance, and then it's up to the voting public (that's you, by the way) to take care of the rest.

So we begin...

With a grand entrance down the stairs... And Margaret Cho has tripped. There may have also been a stumble from the Hoff. Is that Jamie Lee Curtis in the audience?


Audrina Patridge and Tony Dovolani
Dancing the cha-cha-cha to "California Gurls"

Judges' Opinions:
Len: "You've come out, you danced with confidence, I thought you had good technique throughout the dance."
Bruno: "You look like a beautiful show pony that needs to be pushed to the limit..."
Carrie Ann: "You started season 11 with a solo. That takes cojones."

My Opinion: My goodness, she's not so bad! A little insecure-looking, but that's about it to me. Audrina may actually be a contender in this thing. Granted, we haven't seen anyone else yet...

Scores: 6+7+6= 19


Kurt Warner and Anna Trebunskaya
Dancing the Viennese waltz to "This Ain't a Love Song"

Judges' Opinions
:
Len: "I'm so glad these two liked it, because to be honest, Kurt... It had very little to commend it."
Bruno: "You're such a graceful quarterback! I can see great potential."
Carrie Ann: "The way that audience reacted to you, you have an easy connection to both Anna and to the audience."

My Opinion: Kurt seems a little too stiff and groovy for the flowing look they seem to be going for. He kind of looks like that guy who went and took dance lessons for his wedding. Which is nice, but probably not what ballroom judges want.

Scores
: 7+5+7= 19
again...


Kyle Massey and Lacey Schwimmer
Dancing the cha-cha-cha to "My First Kiss"

Judges' Opinions:
Len: "Well... I liked it.... Once you got cracking, I thoroughly enjoyed it."
Bruno: "You are like an adorable little [ummm?]! I want to take you home!"
Carrie Ann: "I think I just fell in love -- you are my first crush of season 11!"

My Opinion: Lacey's costume is scaring me. I need to move past this... And now that I'm past that, wow. Kyle Massey has some moves. Especially for a small, round person. Very fun dance all around, and much less creepy than I expected!
 
Scores: 8+7+8= 23


Rick Fox and Cheryl Burke
Dancing the Viennese waltz to "Crazy"

Judges' Opinions:
Len: "Rick, you could be my twin that I lost at birth. I tell you, the height difference, for me didn't get in the way."
Bruno: "It is very rare that we see sportsmen so evenly matched."
Carrie Ann: "Can I call you Mr. Fox, 'cause I think you're a fox! Your posture was just so ridiculously gorgeous."

My Opinion: First move, I kind of fell in love with that man. Can we say charm? He is crazy tall, but I didn't exactly notice through most of that. Awwww...

Scores
: 8+7+7= 22


Margaret Cho and Louis Van Amstel
Dancing the Viennese waltz to "We Are the Champions"

Judges' Opinions:
Len: "I was really encouraged at the start... And then... The Viennese was an inappropriate dance to bring in all that comedy."
Bruno: "I think you could dance, and I think this was pushing it too far and too soon."
Carrie Ann: "Very bold choice. I'm not sure how it worked, I think it took away..."

My Opinion: Ooh! I like that dress! And I liked that routine! It's really kind of nice to see someone without that angelic grin on her face. That was neat. No clue if the dance was any good, but that was pretty much my style. The previous sentence may explain why I'll never do anything like this (also lack of fame, of course).

Scores: 5+5+5= 15


Brandy and Maksim Chmerkovskiy
Dancing the Viennese waltz to "Cry Me Out"

Judges' Opinions:
Len: "What you can do is make a fantastic impression."
Bruno: "I love the taste of Brandy in the evening!"
Carrie Ann: "I think something you need to be careful with, you're too strong in your moves."

My Opinion: This dress, I don't like. It makes poor Brandy look all one color. She looks like she's technically doing very well (not that I can tell), but the moves seem a little too much somehow. Hey, Carrie Ann feels the same way! I understood something in dancing!

Scores: 7+8+8= 23


Bristol Palin and Mark Ballas
Dancing the cha-cha-cha to "Mama Told Me Not to Come"

Judges' Opinions:
Len: "I think that was a very acceptable performance for week one."
Bruno: "For you this is virgin territory... You're not a performer, work on the performance."
Carrie Ann: "I completely thought you were going to be boring... And I was so wrong!"

My Opinion: I'm trying not to think about Bristol's mom instead of her. But it's tough when they keep referencing her. OK, moving past it... Yay! The jacket's gone! I have to say, Bristol dances pretty much exactly the way I'd expect her to. Like a girl who doesn't know what she's doing, but is giving it her best effort.

Scores: 6+6+6= 18


Florence Henderson and Corky Ballas
Dancing the cha-cha-cha to "Kiss Me Honey Honey Kiss Me"

Judges' Opinions:
Len: "This was great entertainment.... What you've done with Florence is incredible."
Bruno: "Oh Florence, you're a spunky lady, aren't you? At times, you looked a little insecure at the series of steps."
Carrie Ann: "You were having the time of your life out there! When you were in it, it was great, but when you were out of it..."

My Opinion: Umm, if I can move like that in my 70s, I will be incredibly happy. I was thinking it was kind of mean to give the oldest contestant the fast dance. But now, it seems brilliant, since she's looking great! And I have to give Corky props for bravery, letting Florence step on him at the end that way. Could've been bad. Very bad.

Scores: 6+6+6= 18


Michael Bolton and Chelsie Hightower
Dancing the Viennese waltz to "Life After You"

Judges' Opinions:
Len: "I thought you had musicality, I thought you moved around the floor well.... You just got to lift up a little bit more."
Bruno: "You get very tight. You know, once you start to relax, it looks good."
Carrie Ann: "Maybe you were too generous in allowing Chelsie to lead."

My Opinion: Another wedding dancer! He seems to be doing fairly well with what he's doing, but Michael doesn't seem to have too much to do in this dance. And toward the end, I was forcefully reminded of a grandfather dancing with a little girl.

Scores: 6+5+5= 16


Mike "The Situation" Sorrentino and Karina Smirnoff
Dancing the cha-cha-cha to "Break Your Heart"

Judges' Opinions:
Len: "I think you've got potential... You're just under-rehearsed.... You've got the guns but not the ammunition."
Bruno: "You're going to look like a jackass if you carry on like that."
Carrie Ann: "I want to see what you bring back next week."

My Opinion: It's probably not good if I can see when the footwork is off. On the other hand, the late-70s John Travolta look is seriously working for this guy. I doubt he'll do well in the scoring, but he's fun to watch.

Scores: 5+5+5= 15


Jennifer Grey and Derek Hough
Dancing the Viennese waltz to "These Arms of Mine"

Judges' Opinions:
Len: "It was a dance that really suited you.... I thought it was great, but I'm waiting for next week to see how you can do a jive."
Bruno: "I know someone up there is going to be very, very proud of you."
Carrie Ann: "This is why I love what I do. Something very profound just happened right there."

My Opinion: I have to admit that a big section of my childhood revolved around Dirty Dancing. So how can I not root for Jennifer Grey? But this seems like an odd song for a waltz. I guess the beat is right though. Right, dancing. OK, wow. I know she's been the front-runner during the whole lead-up, but this is definitely someone who knows how to dance. Nice!

Scores: 8+8+8= 24


David Hasselhoff and Kym Johnson
Dancing the cha-cha-cha to "Sex Bomb"

Judges' Opinions
:
Len: "It's never too early to panic.... You'll go a few weeks just with a bit of slapstick."
Bruno: "All it was was madness really. There was no dancing.... It was a potpourri of insanity disguised as dance."
Carrie Ann: "You reminded me of the offspring of Donny Osmond and Jerry Springer."

My Opinion: Love the glasses, Hoff. And could they have possibly picked a better piece of music than "Sex Bomb" for this? Hey, why do they get pyrotechnics? He's certainly a smoothie, but I'm not so sure that that counts as good dancing in the most technical sense. Although I'm sure the Germans will disagree.

Scores: 5+5+5= 15


And that, as they say, is that.

The dancers have danced. The judges have scored. I've given my (totally uninformed but still enthusiastic) opinions.

Now it's up to you! You can vote by phone or online at ABC.com if you want to make sure your favorites come back next week.

We'll all find out the final results tomorrow, when I'll be back to post live throughout the Dancing with the Stars results show.


(Image courtesy of ABC)




News from our partners