Derek Hough

Hey guys,

How are you? Ready for the finale?

I feel like we're ready. We're as ready as we'll ever be. We definitely put in the hours. We had 12-to-14-hour days every day. I had a little scare yesterday. My neck started to do a weird spasm. I'm trying to forget about it — mind over matter. It's not as bad as it was last time, but it's there. There are some moves that I'm doing in our freestyle that are based solely on my strength, so I'm a little worried. But I'll be fine; I'll have to battle through.

It was kind of a slow process this week. We took a long time getting music for our freestyle and to get the right edit, and then we went back-and-forth about what to do in the freestyle. It's a super-sized freestyle, so everybody is doing a big production. And I like to big productions, but I felt like for Kellie, less is more. She can dance. I didn't want to mask anything. I just wanted to show her ability and try to draw people in and make them feel something. It's a different approach, so I hope it stands out.

The story in our freestyle is we see Kellie as who she is. We often see the bright, fun, light and sweet Kellie — and she's all those things. What you see is what you get with her. But there is a side to her that is very vulnerable and very fragile. The song is called "Beneath Your Beautiful" and it's about showing it all. To show it all, you can't hide behind anything. That's why I against having a big production. I just wanted to try to make it about her ability and her dancing, and try to wow the audience with what she's doing and not what's around her. The production we have is fun though.

We have two other dances Monday and then the Instant Dance on Tuesday. The quickstep is extremely exhausting! It's more difficult than our first one. The music is a lot more vigorous, so it's faster all around. We got a 29 last time, but that quickstep was actually one of my least favorite dances, just because I felt like it was just a dance. The choreography was difficult, but it was more of a demonstration, like, "This is a quickstep." This one, we want to put on more of a show and make it more of a finale quickstep. We just have to be really careful. There's a fine line between doing too much and making it too busy.

The cha-cha relay is only 40 seconds each couple, but with everything this week, it's kind of outrageous that we have it in the first place! I was like, "Awesome! Four couples in the final. That probably means less work for us." Then it's, "Nope! Just kidding! More work! Four couples and four dances each!" But we feel good about our pieces. Now we just have to execute.

Hope you enjoy the show tonight!

Derek