Laurie Hernandez already stole hearts around the world when she vaulted her way into stardom at the 2016 Rio Olympics. But now the world is falling for the 16-year-old gold medalist once again, but this time we get to admire her dancing skills on Season 23 of Dancing with the Stars.
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Monday night, Laurie proved that her skills as a gymnast aren’t limited to floor routines, where she dances solo and mostly showcases acrobatic tricks. This time she balanced dancing with 5 partners, mastering detailed footwork and portraying loads of attitude! The judges were stunned by this teenage firecracker and awarded her dance– set to Michael Jackson’s “The Way You Make Me Feel”– with the first perfect score of the season.
As if that weren’t impressive enough, it turns out that Laurie only had 3 days to train with partner Val Chmerkovskiy in person! Due to a busy schedule– having committed to making appearances with the rest of the Final 5– Laurie learned most of the routine while on the road by watching videos texted to her by Val. Amazing!
“Normally, it’s like a ‘no-no’ to do Michael Jackson because it’s really hard to emulate, to even come close.” said Judge Carrie-Ann Inaba of the routine, “But I was like ‘Michael Jackson who?’ Laurie Hernandez just killed it! You came out with so much incredible maturity. Every movement perfectly defined. That was– I mean, a star is born.”
Julianne Hough added to the praise: “I literally have nothing to say other than Michael Jackson may be the King of Pop but you are the Queen of the Ballroom!”
Check out the awesome performance below and share!
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