I started watching Dancing with the Stars a few seasons after it started. Therefore, I can’t claim that I am the biggest DWTS fan, that I’ve been watching since the first note of the introduction theme song, or that I’ve seen every dance number. BUT I have been watching since Julianne Hough started competing as a professional. I have DVRed and re-watched just about every routine she perfectly performed. She was the reason I watched the show, I really didn’t care with whom she was paired. Julianne reminded me of Vera-Ellen - Judy, from White Christmas. Vera-Ellen’s routine to “Mandy” is still my favorite part of that holiday classic. The movie is often playing in the background during traditional holiday preparations, but I always drop the ornament, the spatula, or the wrapping paper, and watch that scene.
Then, Julianne’s brother, Derek, came along. I wasn’t sure about him at first. I honestly didn’t think there was any possible way he could be as talented as Julianne and I thought it was weird that she was getting her big brother a job. Since then, my skepticism has turned into admiration and obsession. Now, I watch the show for Derek (because Julianne is no longer competing), vote for him no matter who is partner is, and refer to him as my dream man. I know this sounds strange and obsessive. In fact, just saying it makes me feel like a fourteen year old girl obsessed with 1D. The only show I watch live (not DVRed) is Dancing With the Stars so that I can vote, but I didn’t even vote in the last local election.
I’m going somewhere with this, swear. Because I follow both Derek and Julianne on every form of social media, I feel like I knew about their tour as soon as they decided to tour. I make myself feel like an insider thanks to instagram. I may be the only twenty something who secretly believes Derek Hough could be her future husband, but I know I’m not the only twenty-something to feel like an insider because of instagram. When I looked up the tour dates I was nearly depressed to find out I would be out of the country on vacation with my best friends when MOVE hit my hometown (#firstworldproblem, I know). I wouldn’t let this stop me though. I looked through the other tour cities, thought about drives and costs associated with seeing the show in another city.
I ended up buying tickets to see the show in Atlanta with one of my favorite Dancing With the Stars fan-friend. I have a wonderful friend from college who just moved to Atlanta in March. This trip became a win-win. Visit with college friend + see Derek and Julianne + road trip.
We stayed in Buckhead, which was adorable. I would love to go back and spend more time there. The people were polite and welcoming; the weather was perfect.
On show night, we went to dinner before, and because of traffic backed up due to parking, we got into the theatre literally when the lights were black and the show was about to start. Our seats were in the very top section of the theatre, about three rows from the balcony railing, but smack dab in the middle of the row. Therefore, after being shown to our seats by the usher with a flashlight, we had to whisper several “excuse mes” and “I’m sorrys”. As soon as we got to our seats, the stage lights came on and Derek and Julianne were on stage. Perfect timing. (I’m aware that those sitting in our row did not believe we had perfect timing.)
The following 2+ hours flew by quicker than Helio Castronovez on race day. I have seen too many Broadway shows to count as well as many concerts, and this was one of the most entertaining shows I have ever seen, overflowing with talent.
One part that I appreciated was that Derek or Julianne were on stage the entire time. We didn’t make the trip and then watch the troupe dance while Derek and Julianne changed costumes. They really gave their fans what they wanted. I can’t imagine how much energy it took. I can’t even put into words how much I enjoyed it. The message was simple and meaningful: MOVE! Because motion creates emotion.
We were literally the last people to leave Cobb Energy Center that night. I’m not speaking in hyperbole here. We had to wait in line to take a picture with Derek’s poster. We waited in line with the 60+ year olds and the tweens… which reminds me of one recommendation… there was a little too much sexiness for the tweens in the show. The mother of the teenager next to us didn’t laugh during the sexual references. I, conversely, loved them and I loved every moment of Derek with his shirt off. I bought a MOVE mug and the program. We left completely satisfied, feeling like teen fangirls, and chattering nonstop about how much we loved the show and how we wanted everyone we loved to go see the show.
Because I wanted my family, especially my grandma, to see MOVE, I started exploring to find tickets to the sold out show. I located tickets. Front row tickets. To the show that I cannot attend. For my family. Because I love them. But now I am having the most extreme case of jealousy I’ve ever experienced in my entire life.
Yes, I know I will be in Europe and that is amazing. I know I am making my grandma so happy. But I was in the 100th row, drove eight hours, and took a picture with a poster. They are going to drive thirty minutes, be in the 1st row, and be able to take actual pictures. I am trying my best to deal with my jealousy and FOMO and focus on my Europe trip. But I am missing my only chance to lock eyes with Derek Hough. I am hoping that I get over this, because it makes me feel like a horrible person. I also hope, that someday, maybe I will get to see them again? The uncertainty is agonizing.
Am I a horrible person? Am I a spoiled brat? Don’t answer that. This is honestly the most selfless act I’ve performed in a while! I really, honestly, hope they have the best night ever, even though I won’t be there. I just hope that someday, I will get to see Derek (and Julianne) from closer than the balcony!
Here's that magical photo I know you were waiting for!
Note: Since this post was published, my dad has made the picture into a full sized poster! Score! But where does a grown woman put such a thing?