Hey everyone!

Thanks for your votes!

We may not have gotten immunity, but I thought the tango was Marilu's best dance so far! She's been improving every week and I thought she looked fantastic and very impressive.

I want to clear the air about something: I know Marilu said in the clip on the results show that she thought I was upset with her, but I wasn't. I wasn't upset with her or about the scores. "Upset" is the wrong word. I was just bummed out because I just knew she could perform it better. Our dress rehearsal was better. I'm with her when she does it fantastically. I just want everyone to see that. I'm not disappointed in her. I'm not upset with her. I'm proud of her. I just want people to see how great she is. She loves the show so much and I want her to look her absolute best.

Marilu is on the brink of breaking through. It's like we're on this really thin line, where it's amazing and beautiful and fantastic on one side, and it's kind of uncomfortable and uneasy on the other side. We're just teetering on the edge and we're one small step from going over to either side. If we can just get it consistent on show night, it's going to be fantastic.

I think it's partially nerves on show night that affect her, but also her highly active brain, which is a gift, but in those types of situations, you have to get out of your head. If you're absorbing everything around you, you'll be overloaded. If your thoughts drift somewhere else, you're going to be thrown off. But it's easy for everyone to say, "Get out of your head," but it's not easy to do it. It's not like a light switch you turn on and off. There's a great saying: Overanalysis equals paralysis. And it's true. If there are too many things in our minds, you won't be focused. That's what we have to work on. She needs to look completely in control and attentive.


I know Marilu can do it. She has the ability. It's like we're on the cusp. I just want to get it to where we're not guessing and we can be at complete certainty it's going to be great. I'm pretty good at getting my partners to being comfortable and confident, so I just want to make sure I can get her to that place and make sure I'm doing my job.

I think this week will be a great one for her. It's Cirque du Soleil Week and each couple was given a show. We have and we're doing the paso doble. She's looking really good so far. The routine is really cool. We have four troupe members. I'm using something from my tour with Julianne. Cirque was actually one of the inspirations behind it, so when I found out we were doing Cirque, I was, "Oh, I can integrate this into it."

I'm making it more about the visuals. It's a story of good and evil, which is the premise of . I'm excited to see what everyone else comes up with. I think it'll be fun to have the Cirque element and I don't think it necessarily will detract from the dances as long as you don't go overboard with it. The loyal audience has seen a lot of paso dobles and cha chas. Throwing a fire-breather in there is going to be interesting for them to watch.

I'm also performing a results show number with the troupe and some outside dancers. It's to a song I wrote with Lindsey Stirling, so we're going to debut it! I just threw the routine together yesterday and hopefully it turns out good. I'm going to play the drums and I will be tapping and drumming against myself at one point. One of the dancers in it is Marie Poppins, who does a really cool section with Allison Holker with mirrors. I saw her do it on social media and there's a piece in the music that has a similar vibe for it, so I called her up to ask if she could come do it. There's also going to be some Argentine tango in there. It's going to be a really cool performance. I'm very excited about it!

On Saturday, I'm going to be performing at the Motion Picture Fund. George Clooney's hosting, and Hugh Jackman and Anne Hathaway will be there too. I have no idea how I scored an invite! When I found out the other attendees, I was like, "Crap!" No pressure, right? The theme is Old Hollywood, so I'm going to do Singin' in the Rain, which I've done before, and also an Argentine tango. I'm cheating a little bit, but I figured it was easiest to keep it in line with what I'm already doing this week. It should be a really fun night!

Thanks for reading! See you Monday!

Derek