By Gianna D’Argento
Let’s face it, we’re all guilty of watching “Dancing With the Stars” at some point in our lives during its ten years of being on air. Whether you’re still tuning in now or haven’t watched the show in years, the names Julianne and Derek Hough should ring a bell.
This dynamic sibling duo has begun their third tour this month, “Move Beyond,” and I was lucky enough to attend their show at the Chicago Theater on April 22. Since I’ve had a crush on Derek since I was 10, I was excited, to say the least (Spoiler alert: his shirt comes off at least four times during the show, pleasing the female-dominated crowd). As soon as they both appeared on stage, side-by-side, I knew the show would exceed my expectations. They started the show dancing together, along with their 12 backup dancers, in the style of hip-hop to a catchy mix of current popular songs, one being Ed Sheeran’s “Shape of You.”
Right when the dancing began, I couldn’t seem to sit still – I was dancing in my seat and couldn’t sit still – it was as if I was the 10-year-old girl who wanted to a dancer when she grew up.
Since the Houghs are siblings, many were concerned about how they would be able to dance together without any romantic undertones. Throughout the show, they embraced their brother-sister relationship while also having the stage to themselves as they sang their own songs or danced with separate partners or groups. They were constantly poking fun at each other, like all siblings do, and if there were any dances that were more on the romantic side, they danced with other performers. Towards the end of this two-hour show, Julianne and Derek had a sibling dance-off and performed a tear-jerking performance that depicted themselves as children going through their parents’ divorce, which was featured on an episode of DWTS.
The vast array of styles of dance included hip-hop, tap, contemporary, classical ballroom and samba. The music tailored to the various ages that made up the audience by playing songs from the 80’s and by Nick Jonas and Sia.
Not only did Julianne and Derek both sing and dance to keep their audience entertained, but they also interacted with the audience throughout their two hour performance. First, Derek selected a female volunteer and took her on stage where he danced and serenaded her while the entire crowd was cheering her on. Later on in the show, Julianne chose four male volunteers and danced with each of them, which ended up being comical in its own right. Since the rest of us were clearly jealous, Julianne got the whole crowd on its feet and had us do some easy dance moves in our spots along with her.
At the end of their performance, the Houghs stood on stage together – with Julianne sporting a Chicago Cubs jersey – and thanked the audience for making their third tour possible and how honored they were for being a part of the revival of dance. They ended their show by taking a final bow with their equally amazing back up dancers while the crowd gave a standing ovation for an incredible performance. They get a 10 from me!