So, the question some of us were asking Tuesday night was: Where are we? Dancing With The Stars? Or American Idol? There were so many crossovers between the two shows Tuesday night that it seemed the two television titans had morphed into one super show: Dancing With The Idols.
There was guest star Constantine Maroulis, lead singer for the theatrical Rock Of Ages song and dance troupe. There was Idol Season 7 winner Jordin Sparks, sitting ringside. There was Idol musical director Michael Orland, sitting down at the piano, getting ready to accompany this season's most controversial cast-off, Pia Toscano.
Toscano was flawless, singing the song that catapulted her into serious contention for the Idol crown, "I'll Stand By You." Her new boyfriend, Dancing pro Mark Ballas — along with pro Karina Smirnoff — tore up the dance floor in front of her. The audience ate it up. "I tell you what," said head judge Len Goodman after the show, "that girl is fantastic."
Does Goodman watch Idol? "I watch it," he said, "but I'm not an avid viewer. Just as I wouldn't be an avid viewer of this show if I wasn't a judge. But I did see Pia and I thought she was a knockout. A brilliant singer. Tonight, I would've given her a 10."
In the audience, Ballas' mother, Shirley, watched the performance and held her breath. Mark had twisted his ankle badly the day before during dress rehearsals for his quick step with celebrity partner Chelsea Kane. But he carried on with the show Monday night and said he would do the same on Tuesday. When the number was over, Mark walked on stage and kissed Pia on the cheek. They left the stage hand-in-hand. Moments later, Mark came into the bleachers to hug his mom.
Was his ankle okay? "It's not good," he said, shaking his head. But he looked happy about the performance. And his mom looked terribly proud.