Okay, we might have been crying a little watching James Van Der Beek's foxtrot (Erin McCandless, courtesy ABC)

"DWTS" Week 10 Recap: We're Not Crying, You Are

If you haven't yet watched last night's episode of "Dancing with the Stars," we're going to kindly recommend that you grab the tissues before doing so. Because, OH. WOW. We were teary-eyed through the whole darn thing. And we weren't the only ones: The entire ballroom seemed to be on the verge of waterworks, from the stars to the pros to, yes, even the judges.

That's not a huge surprise, really. It was the semi-finals, so naturally tensions were running high. And we only have one more week left with all our incredible stars, which is cause enough for crying. But before we start tearing up again, let's get to some of the incredible dancing we saw last night—of which there was plenty!


Kel Mitchell and Witney Carson: Contemporary

Kel Mitchell decided to use his contemporary routine as a platform for a cause he really cares about: reducing gun violence. He dedicated his performance to a childhood friend who died at a young age from a gunshot wound. The song? "I Will Always Love You" (cue the tears). Kel and partner Witney Carson delivered a gorgeous, heartbreaking number that merited three 10s from the judges, and even a standing ovation from head judge Len Goodman.

James Van Der Beek and Emma Slater: Foxtrot

James Van Der Beek also dedicated his dance to an important person in his life: his wife, who (as he explained just before his performance) suffered a miscarriage over the weekend. James explained that he wasn't even sure he would perform this week, but we are so glad that he did. His foxtrot with partner Emma Slater was emotionally raw, and absolutely beautiful. The judges awarded them three 9s, for a total of 27.

Hannah Brown and Alan Bersten: Contemporary

Hannah Brown's contemporary routine was inspired by her tumultuous time on "The Bachelorette," and the love she found and lost on the show (we still don't forgive you, Jed). But maybe she needed to lose that love to find...this incredible performance? We were blown away by how absolutely Hannah trusted partner Alan Bersten. The two performed some seriously jaw-dropping lifts that required Hannah to totally let herself go, and she did. The judges gave the duo three 9s, for a total score of 27.

Of course, it wouldn't be a Season 28 episode without a shocking elimination. For the first time this season, James and Emma ended up in jeopardy, alongside Ally Brooke and Sasha Farber. Even though Ally and Sasha had landed in the bottom twice before, the judges chose to send James and Emma home—which sent an audible gasp through the ballroom. We're going to miss those two, and we're sending all the love to James and his family.

What do you think of last night's episode? Did the right couple go home?

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A Letter from the Editor in Chief

Hi, dance friends. It is a strange time to be a person in the world, and an especially strange time to be a dancer. As the dance community faces the coronavirus crisis, a lot of you are coping with closed studios, canceled performances and competitions, and a general sense of anxiety about how your world will look going forward.

Yes, dancers are super resilient, and there's been a lot of inspiring community-building happening. #LivingRoomDances and Instagram dance parties and virtual ballet classes with the pros are wonderful. Dance can, and should, be a bright spot in the darkness. But that weird, empty feeling you have? It might be grief. The loss of the certainty of daily class, the loss of the promise of that big end-of-year performance—that's real. The dance studio has always been a safe place; it's especially hard not to have that outlet now, when you need it most.

We're here for you. We—and our friends at Dance Magazine, Pointe, Dance Teacher, The Dance Edit, and Dance Business Weekly—are doing our best to document the hurdles facing the dance industry, and to advocate for dancers in need. We're developing more online content that will help you maintain and improve your technique while you're at home, and process the mental and emotional fallout of all this upheaval. (You can keep up with the latest stories here.) And we're still making our print magazine. We have issues planned and shot, full of great dance stories and beautiful photos. We're not going anywhere.

We want to hear from you. Talk to us. Or dance to us. Or both. We won't stop moving, and you shouldn't, either.

Margaret

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