Gladys Knight, the R&B legend, survived for Motown Week, but the competition simply got too tough. At the bottom of the leader board among the judges Monday, Knight couldn’t be saved by her fan base. She became the fifth person out on ‘Dancing With the Stars” Tuesday night.
At age 67, the Atlanta native brought oodles of grace and elegance to her dancing. Judge Len Goodman summarized it nicely last night after her samba (which received 7’s across the board.): “You’re not the best dancer but I tell you what you are: the most charismatic dancer. It’s so appealing. It’s just easy like Sunday morning.”
For the first month, Knight stayed alive, garnering decent scores most weeks, even nabbing a few 8’s along the way. But she obviously couldn’t match the likes of much younger, much nimbler competitors such as Katherine Jenkins and Maria Menounos.
And while she was in the bottom two with Disney star Roshon Fegan and had to dance for her life in a “duel’ with someone nearly 50 years younger, her departure was a foregone conclusion.
“I am so just amazed at this journey,” she said. “I am so overjoyed.”
“Gladys is one of the most inspirational people I met,” her dancer partner Tristan MacManus said quite sincerely.
” ‘Dancing with the Stars’ gives you another look at life,” Knight said in a video. “It’s like the fountain of youth!”
Melissa Gilbert is clearly the weakest link remaining of the top 7. Her average judges’ score over six dances of 21.8 was only slightly better than Knight’s 21.5.
Jenkins has garnered the best scores to date, averaging 27.2, with William Levy (25.8), Menounos (25.3), Donald Driver (25.3), Fagen (24.8) and Jaleel White (24.7) clustered close behind. Levy, White and Jenkins all took home a 10 from at least one judge Monday night, though the toughest arbiter, Goodman, didn’t hand out any.
By Rodney Ho, Radio & TV Talk