Ashley Hamilton and Macy Gray ousted from 'Dancing with the Stars'
By Christopher Rocchio, 09/24/2009
Singer Macy Gray and actor/singer Ashley Hamilton were revealed to be the first two celebrity participants eliminated from Dancing with the Stars' ninth season during last night's live results show on ABC.
Hamilton and his professional partner Edyta Sliwinska were ousted during the first week of the competition based on a combination of their judges scores from Monday night's performance episode that featured the male celebrity participants and home viewer votes cast immediately following the broadcast.
"It's been a blast," said Hamilton after his elimination. "I've had a great partner and such a great experience. I'm so grateful just to even get on the show."
"I wish we could stay a little longer because, as he said, we had a blast working together," added Sliwinska. "We had a lot more to offer, but that's the nature of the competition and I wish the best of luck to the people that have stayed in."
Gray and her professional partner Jonathan Roberts were also eliminated during the first week of the competition based on a combination of their judges scores from Tuesday night's performance episode that featured the female celebrity participants and home viewer votes cast immediately following the broadcast.
"I had a good time," said Gray after her ouster. "It's been cool. I learned a little bit about dance and ballroom isn't my calling exactly, but I learned a little bit and we had a good time."
"And you did fabulous," added Roberts, who was also the first professional cut last season when he was paired with singer Belinda Carlisle.
During Monday night's performance episode, Hamilton and Sliwinska performed a foxtrot routine, for which they received 15 out of 30 possible points from judges Len Goodman, Carrie Ann Inaba and Bruno Tonioli.
"Well Ashley, as you know in the first week you've got all those facts that you've learned from the professional in your head, and they all go out the window because you just want to get through the routine, which you did," said Goodman. "I thought by in large, for all the basic steps, your footwork was correct... It just had a roughness about it. You've got to try and get a bit more finesse."
Tonioli then criticized Hamilton for his "total lack of showmanship."
"To me, this was dead," he said. "It really was... It wasn't perfect, it was very rough. I didn't like it."
Inaba said while Hamilton and Sliwinska looked good together, she also had some problems with the actual routine.
"In a competition like this when you have 16 people competing, you have to define yourself," she said. "I didn't see anything that sort of defined you or separated you from everybody. So that's what I want to see. You've got one more shot tonight, you're coming back out with the salsa, knock 'em dead."
However Hamilton and Sliwinska were unable to follow Inaba's advice, as they received four points for their fourth-place finish in their four-couple performance of a 30-second relay salsa dance.
"Ashley, that was a dance only your father could love," commented Goodman -- a reference to Hamilton's dad George Hamilton, who competed on Dancing with the Stars' second season.
"Ashley, you've got to work on your rhythm," added Tonioli.
Hamilton and Sliwinska finished the performance episode with a total of 19 out of 40 possible points, placing them at the bottom of the judges' leaderboard.
During Tuesday night's performance episode, Gray and Roberts performed a Viennese waltz routine, for which they received 15 out of 30 possible points from Goodman, Inaba and Tonioli.
"Macy, that was fascinating," said Inaba. "There is something fascinating to watch about you. Your technique? I can't even go there. But when you perform, there is such a natural genuineness to you and you're so innocent and pure, it was beautiful in its own bizarre way. I enjoyed it."
Goodman said Inaba's assessment was "correct."
"There's a vulnerability about you and a charm," he said. "I can only say this: If I was at home, I would be voting for you."
Tonioli described Gray as "endearing."
"It was like watching a child taking his first steps into a scary new world," added Tonioli. "You touch people's hearts. Now start working on the technique."
Gray and Roberts then received four points for their fourth-place finish in their four-couple performance of a 30-second relay cha-cha-cha dance.
"Macy I think the busy schedule that you've had caught up with you in the cha-cha-cha unfortunately," Goodman told Gray, who recently finished a world concert tour. "I know you've been really busy."
Tonioli added Gray had "better timing" in the cha-cha-cha and seemed "more comfortable" with the music, while Inaba asked her to work a little harder on "capturing the essence of the styling" of the routine.
Gray and Roberts finished the performance episode with a total of 19 out of 40 possible points, placing them at the bottom of the judges' leaderboard.
The only other ninth-season couple to receive a 19 out of 40 possible points during the first week of the competition was retired NFL star Michael Irvin and professional newcomer Anna Demidova -- who apparently received enough home viewer votes to stave off elimination.
Atop the judges' leaderboard for the first week of the competition were actress Joanna Krupa and Derek Hough with 34 points, followed by singer Aaron Carter and Karina Smirnoff with 32 points.
Hot on their heels were singer/actress Mya and Dmitry Chaplin and former The Osbournes star Kelly Osbourne and Louis van Amstel, who each received 31 points. Entertainer Donny Osmond and Kym Johnson received 30 points.
Food Network host Mark Dacascos and Lacey Schwimmer received 29 points, followed by Olympic gold medalist swimmer Natalie Coughlin and Alec Mazo and professional snowboarder Louie Vito and Chelsie Hightower, who each scored 27 points.
Rounding out the judges' leaderboard were actress Melissa Joan Hart and Mark Ballas with a 24; UFC mixed martial arts fighter Chuck Liddell and Anna Trebunskaya and actress Debi Mazar and Maksim Chmerkovskiy with a 22; and former supermodel Kathy Ireland and Tony Dovolani and indicted former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay and Cheryl Burke with a 20.
Dancing with the Stars next ninth-season performance episode will air Monday, September 28 at 8PM ET/PT on ABC -- with each of the 14 remaining couples performing either the jive, quickstep or tango.
Then on Tuesday at 9PM ET/PT, another couple will be eliminated from the competition based on a combination of the judges' scores and home viewer votes.