“Shake It Up” star Zendaya Coleman thrilled “Dancing with the Stars” fans and judges on Monday night with a performance to remember and walked away with the first perfect ten scores of Season 16.
Zendaya and her partner Val Chmerkovskiy got 29 out of 30 points for an Argentine tango that had the 16-year-old actress creating the story of a sultry jewel thief. While judges Bruno Tonioli and Carrie Ann Inaba awarded them perfect tens, only Len Goodman held out with a nine.
After the show, Zendaya told Xfinitytv about the dance, “I felt magical.” She added, “Every time I’m onstage there’s a feeling I get and I really enjoy it. It’s a magical feeling and that’s why I do it.”
And Val said, “After the routine, I felt good. I didn’t know what the scores were going to be, but I’m glad [the judges] saw something that we felt.”
The poised Disney kid seemed to take the tens in stride, saying, “I think it’s pretty cool. It was awesome and I’m really proud of us.
The two admitted that they didn’t expect the dance would be such a hit after rehearsals were rough. “It was really shaky, to be honest,” Val sighed. “We really challenged each other with the choreography this week and it really wasn’t coming together, not the way I wanted it to be.
But Zendaya rose to the occasion on performance night. “We didn’t do so well in the dress rehearsal,” Val said. “I was really harsh on her this whole week so I didn’t even say anything because it’s enough for me. If it hasn’t clicked for her yet, [I figured], then just leave it. She’s amazing. The whole time, she just pulls through.”
On a night in which the celebrities and their partners were required to dance side-by-side with pro dance couples, Zendaya and Val danced with his brother, Maks Chmerkovskiy, and Anna Trebunskaya. Zendaya said, “I was trying my best to be as good or on that level.” She also laughed about Val and Maks being together in rehearsal, “That’s the entertaining part. That’s when it gets funny because them two together is like, they’re 8 [years old] again.”
Zendaya told reporters that she is a “perfectionist” who has a ritual of watching herself on the West Coast Dancing with the Stars telecast, which doesn’t air live. “After every show, I go and eat at the same place, I get the same food and I watch it and they let me sit at the corner of the bar so I can watch it on the monitor and it’s really cool,” she told reporters. “Everyone knows that I’m coming there and everybody in there is like, ‘wooo!’ and cheering.”
It looks like the cheering isn’t going to stop any time soon for the “DWTS” frontrunner!