Dazzling footwork

By Aideen O'Flaherty

RTÉ viewers were treated to some dazzling footwork by Denis Bastick and Johnny Ward and their respective professional dance partners on Sunday’s Dancing with the Stars, where the two local men are battling it out against a host of other celebrities to win the coveted glitterball trophy.

Five-time All Ireland GAA champion Denis Bastick, from Glenview in Tallaght, donned his dancing shoes as he performed an American Smooth to ‘It’s a Beautiful Day’ with his dance partner Valeria Milova.

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Denis Bastick danced an American Smooth with his partner Valeria Milova

Following his performance, Denis said: “The butterflies are the same as on the pitch. I worked hard on the chassis.”

Judge Brian Redmond said: “We have a GAA star that I as a Dub can get behind, you have great long arms, but this could be a weakness in the ballroom, a lot of work to be done but a good start”, while Julian commented that Denis could have “huge potential to be the Italian stallion in this race.”

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Johnny Ward dancing the Jive with his partner Emily Barker

Denis received a score of 15 from the judges, with Loraine adding: “Football players are light on their feet and you showed it...even when you slipped...that energy needs to go from the feet through the front and back and power it through. Well done.”

Greenhills man Johnny Ward (31), whose acting credits include ‘Love/Hate’, ‘Fair City’ and ‘Copper Face Jacks: The Musical’, took to the stage to do a Jive with his dancing partner Emily Barker to Leif Garrett’s electrifying ‘Johnny B. Goode’.

After his energetic routine, the past pupil of Templeogue College said: “I’m relieved. The feeling is overwhelming. Thanks to Emily, she’s so patient.”

Johnny got high praise from the judges, with Loraine Barry remarking: “Wow that was impressive, you have an astounding amount of energy. Go Johnny Go Go Go!”, leading the judges to ultimately give the talented actor a score of 22.

Commenting on Johnny’s dance, judge Julian Benson commented: “It was full of content, there were so many tricks and flicks, everything on point, you sold it to us and the audience.

“I would like to see you up on your toes a little bit more. If this were your first dance, I can't wait to see the rest.”

Last weekend’s show was the first episode of the new series, with the five male celebrities doing their debut performances. This Sunday the six female celebrities will hit the dancefloor at 6.30pm on RTÉ One.

There are no eliminations for the first two weeks of the show.

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