Awwww, we heart the Season 28 final four so much. (Erin McCandless, courtesy ABC)

"DWTS" Finale Recap: And the Winner Is...

It's beyond crazy that Season 28 of "Dancing With the Stars" is over. This has to have been one of the most dramatic seasons in the show's history, complete with major injuries, last-minute mother-daughter replacements, shocking eliminations, controversial contestants—the works. But it's also been one of our favorite seasons, because the dancing has been next-level amazing, week after week.

Last night's finale required every couple to perform twice: first, a dance they'd done before, and then, of course, their freestyle. And we are such suckers for a good freestyle, when the professionals and stars can bring their personalities to the ballroom, and you never know quite what to expect.

In case you missed it, here are all of last night's freestyle performances—plus the Season 28 champions!

Ally Brooke and Sasha Farber

Okay, Ally Brooke, we see you, manifesting your own destiny in the finale by starting your freestyle inside a giant Mirror Ball. Ally and her partner Sasha Farber performed a fast-paced, energetic number jam-packed with Latin and contemporary elements. We were a little surprised to see the couple still struggling with some of their more challenging lifts, but the judges loved the performance, awarding the couple three 10s.

Lauren Alaina and Gleb Savchenko

We love, love, LOVED watching "country girl" Lauren Alaina get back to her roots—and loved watching everyone's favorite Russian stud Gleb Savchenko get into the vibe, too! Lauren and Gleb's freestyle was more about having fun than anything else, and it managed to feature line dancing, Luke Bryan, and lots of cowboy hat choreography. The judges gave the country couple three 10s, for a perfect 30.

Hannah Brown and Alan Bersten

We're just going to say it: This girl was on FIRE. We were absolutely blown away by Hannah Brown's freestyle with partner Alan Bersten. She delivered a powerful performance, with elements of Argentine tango, waltz, jazz, and hip hop, and some totally jaw-dropping lifts thrown in for good measure. The judges gave Hannah and Alan three 10s, and Carrie Ann Inaba even described the freestyle as "victorious." 👀

Kel Mitchell and Witney Carson

Kel Mitchell and Witney Carson's freestyle made us want to "Jump" (sorry not sorry) up and dance along with them. The duo's routine was inspired by Kel's hometown, Chicago, and they totally brought the Chi-town funk—lowrider car and all. It's rare that we see serious hip hop in the ballroom, but Kel and Witney's freestyle totally delivered. The duo received two 10s and a 9 (and head judge Len Goodman got more than a few boos for docking them a point).

So after all that amazing dancing, who was awarded the Mirror Ball Trophy? Your Season 28 champs are...


We're totally thrilled for Hannah. After all, who needs a final rose when you've got a Mirror Ball?

Latest Posts

Viktorina Kapitonova in "Swan Lake Bath Ballet" (photo by Ryan Capstick, courtesy Corey Baker Dance)

Please Enjoy the Quarantine Genius of “Swan Lake Bath Ballet”

That old saying about limitations breeding creativity—hat tip to Orson Welles—has never felt more relevant than in these lockdown days. Here's the latest brilliant dance project born (hatched?) of quarantine restrictions: "Swan Lake Bath Ballet," a contemporary take on the classic featuring 27 A-list ballet dancers performing from their own bathtubs.

Keep Reading SHOW LESS
Project 21 dancers (from left) Selena Hamilton, Gracyn French, and Dyllan Blackburn (Photo by Quinn Wharton; hair and makeup throughout by Angela Huff for Mark Edward Inc.)

How Project 21 Is Shaping the Next Generation of Competition-Dance Standouts

"I wish I had a better story about the name," says Molly Long, founder of the Orange County, CA–based dance studio Project 21. In truth, it's a play on the fact that she was born on the twenty-first of August, and 21 is her favorite number. "I was away on a teaching tour, the audition announcement was going live on Instagram the next day, and I desperately needed a name. Project 21 was just the least cheesy of the options I thought of!"

The fact that fans might expect the name to have some profound meaning speaks to the near-mythic status Project 21 has achieved on the competition and convention scene since its founding in 2014. Long's dancers are all wholly individual, yet jell seamlessly as a group, and are consistently snagging top prizes everywhere on the circuit. Each season brings a slew of new accolades, high-caliber faculty, and legions of devoted followers.

The industry has taken notice of the studio's unique ethos. "Molly gets through to her dancers in a special way, and they have this incomparable level of commitment to their craft as a result," says dancer and choreographer Billy Bell, who's worked closely with Long and her dancers. "That's what sets them apart—it's like a little dose of magic."

Keep Reading SHOW LESS

Editors' Picks

Enter the Cover Model Search