Nev Schulman and partner Jenna Johnson were absolutely "Dynamite" last night. (Erin McCandless, courtesy ABC)

"DWTS" Week 2 Recap: The First Cut is the Deepest

Well, we've officially made it to week two of "Dancing with the Stars," pandemic edition! And with no bedazzled face masks in sight, we can only assume that the "DWTS" team's #SocialDisDancing protocol is holding up. Pause for (pre-recorded, because there isn't a live audience) applause.

But even a pandemic isn't going to stop the "DWTS" judges from sending someone home, because well, this is a competition, after all, and Carrie Ann Inaba doesn't have time for tears. In case you missed last night's episode (or in case you were too busy trying to figure out exactly who Dixie D'Amelio is dating now), we rounded up some of the highlights—and who was this season's first cut.


Nev Schulman and Jenna Johnson: Cha Cha

We have to be honest—our hopes weren't too high for "Catfish" king Nev Schulman when we heard he'd be joining this season of "DWTS." But whew, were we wrong. Schulman's cha cha with partner Jenna Johnson was absolutely "Dynamite" (hello, BTS Army!), with all the hip action we ever could have dreamed of. The judges gave Schulman and Johnson three 7s, for a total 21.

Jeannie Mai and Brandon Armstrong: Cha Cha

Hello, Jeannie Mai, bringing us all of the energy we need in 2020. TBH, watching this performance is better than drinking a triple shot of espresso. Miss Mai was out there mugging with the best of them, and we couldn't get enough. The judges gave Jeannie and her partner, Brandon Armstrong, three 6s for a total score of 18, advising Jeannie to reign her dancing in a bit—but honestly, we only want *more* from this couple.

Kaitlyn Bristowe and Artem Chigvintsev: Foxtrot

We're just gonna say it: Former Bachelorettes make the best "DWTS" contestants, send tweet. Following in former champ Hannah Brown's footsteps, Kaitlyn Bristowe absolutely dazzled last night with the dreamiest of foxtrots. Bristowe managed to overcome an ankle injury (and uncertainty as to whether or not she'd even be able to perform) and received the highest score of the night: two 7s and an 8, for a total 22.

Sadly, with the second week of the season came the first elimination. And with Charles Oakley and Carole Baskin in jeopardy, the judges chose to save Baskin and partner Pasha Pashkov. We guess cat-itude really is everything! (And yes, the cat puns are here to stay.)

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Although not without its downsides—trolls seem to find their way onto every social media platform—many users who identify as LGBTQ+ are finding support on the app, which has opened up space for them to present their identities in a way that feels authentic. For dancers, who train and work in a world that often reinforces the gender binary, claiming space on TikTok can feel especially validating.

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You may know what it means to earn a silver, gold, or platinum award for your performance—but probably not an A, B, or C grade. Often, dancers don't encounter the idea of grading in dance until they enter collegiate dance programs. When you're evaluating an inherently subjective art form, what distinguishes an A student from a B student?

The answer: It's complicated. "There's a lot that goes into creating a well-rounded, successful student, which hopefully produces a well-rounded, successful professional," says Angelina Sansone, a ballet instructor at University of North Carolina School of the Arts.

In college programs, set movement phrases, repertory selections, or audition-style classes often serve as graded midterms or final exams. Written components such as self-assessments, audition research projects, and dance history tests might count as well. But the largest contributing factor to your grade is usually how you approach the work, day in and day out.

Dance Spirit talked to faculty across the country to discover what it takes to be a top student—and why dance grades matter.

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"DWTS" Week 6 Recap: Nope, Derek Hough Didn't Propose on Live TV

Please hold for applause: We're now roughly halfway through this season of "Dancing with the Stars," mid-pandemic, without a single case of COVID-19. Apparently we can have some good things this year!

And last night's episode of "DWTS" was particularly dance-tastic, complete with a special dance-pearance by judge Derek Hough. And while we were a little disappointed by certain aspects of his performance (please refer to this article's headline), it was all kinds of amazing to see Derek back dancing in the ballroom. But in case you missed it (or you were too busy voting early—go you!), here are all the highlights from last night's episode.

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