Mauricio Umansky faces his last dance on ‘Dancing With the Stars’

Publish Date: November 01, 2023

Written by Lillian Dickerson

- Originally published at Inman News - Lillian Dickerson

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Fans of luxury brokerage The Agency and its CEO Mauricio Umansky had to say a tough goodbye to the broker on Tuesday night as he became the sixth contestant to be eliminated from Dancing With the Stars.

After his stunning performance the week prior, in which Umansky and his professional dance partner Emma Slater performed a contemporary dance that saw the CEO earn his highest score of the season from judges, Umansky was feeling good.

“Going into this week, I’m feeling energized and confident,” Umansky told cameras as he prepped for another week of competition.

Since it was Halloween, the week’s theme was Monster Night. Umansky and Slater dressed up as a zombie matador and a zombie dancer to perform an Argentine tango.

“I think you made yourself a contender [last week],” Slater encouraged Umansky during rehearsals. “We’ve just got to keep the ball rolling.”

The dance partners were in New York for the week because Umansky had a work event to attend, but were doing their best to fit in as much time for rehearsals as possible.

“I love Halloween,” Umansky said. “I definitely believe in ghosts.”

Umansky then went on to tell how he sold the home that Michael Jackson died in, and believes “there is no question” that MJ’s ghost came to visit one time when Umansky returned to the property a day after showing it and found the stereo turned on and the windows open.

“I think that the Argentine tango is something that Mauricio will be really good at because he really likes being that strong, suave, classy guy who leads,” Slater said.

As the number of contestants on the show has been winnowing, Umansky said the biggest challenge for him was to keep his edge as the competition gets more fierce. “So that means every move has to be perfect,” he said.

The pair stepped onto the stage in bloody makeup and eerily colored contact lenses and danced to “Somebody’s Watching Me” by Rockwell while performing a tango that came across as quite technically correct.

“You have come so far from week 1,” judge Carrie Ann Inaba said after the performance. “I would like to see just a hair more of the posture and just a little more strength in your core, because sometimes it gets a little wobbly.”

“For me, it’s actually the legs,” added judge Derek Hough. “I want to see more resistance in the legs, getting more rounded, because actually up here [around Umansky’s torso], I was like, ‘Let’s go Mauricio, let’s go!’”

Actor Niecey Nash, who served as a guest judge this week, told Umansky, “You definitely manhandled this woman. Something you said in the package [while the pair were rehearsing], you said Emma looked sexy and you looked strong — and you did not lie.”

“I know you went for the power,” judge Bruno Tonioli added. “The power that you have gained is great. Argentine tango’s action … You have to imagine a cat, prowling, stalking through the jungle. The step was there, but it was more bull than cat, let’s put it that way. It wasn’t bad, but the style was not correct.”

Despite some constructive criticism, Umansky received respectable scores from the judges, earning 31 out of 40 possible points for the evening. After all the judges’ scores had been tallied across all nine contestants for the night, Umansky was in sixth place.

After audience votes were also brought into consideration, however, Umansky didn’t make the cut.

“It’s been amazing, it’s been so much fun, it’s been an incredible journey,” the luxury CEO said of his experience on Dancing With the Stars. “It’s something I would have never done in my entire life, and I had an opportunity to experience something extraordinary and it’s just been a beautiful, beautiful journey.”

Slater also had some kind words to share — and even seemed to choke up — as she and Umansky were forced to say goodbye to the show.

“It’s been amazing,” she said. “It’s been just a true blessing at a time where I feel like it really meant a lot to us. So, it’s brilliant. You were amazing.”

Email Lillian Dickerson

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