Thursday, 16 February 2017

In the Beginning


Founding members of a group of staunch #TeamDoti supporters, Doti’s Divas, wanted to capture the essence of a stunning dance partnership and hold it in perpetuity. 

The journey begins when former Hollyoaks actor Danny Mac is paired with professional dancer and choreographer Otlile Mabuse (Oti) in the tenth year of the Strictly Come Dancing[1] show. She is 'over the moon' and he is ‘ready – bring it on’. 

Danny explains to the Radio Times why he feels ready to do the show now after turning it down several times in the last few years. 
Elsewhere Danny confesses: "I have no idea how this is going to go, to be completely honest. I feel like I’m jumping out of a plane and hoping the parachute will open".

 “I wouldn’t know where to start,” he says. "I hope my partner is like some kind of drill sergeant who will whip me into shape and then beat me...!”

 Whoaa Danny's not that kind of show. But be careful what you ask for.  Are you ready?

Okay, we can see you've been working it but we need the whole picture. Don't forget those lifts and there are plenty of them. You need a strong core and what about those biceps?  

As you can see Oti is ready and rearing to go...Um..yes, okay we get
the whole picture now. Looking good. Did someone say you were shy?

But how will this partnership work out? Will it thrive and thrill us? A doting 'Doti' fan channels Mystic Meg:

.. A demanding Leo & dreaming Piscean were paired up. Leo’s strength of personality can be intimidating for a Piscean...who risks being swallowed up and becoming an after-thought in this relationship...can it work? Yes it can. It’s a complex affair but Leo and Piscean compatibility can be as wondrous as a fairy tale...and this was indeed a fairy tale...there is a mutual fascination and attraction... drawing them together... 

Leo is enchanted by the Piscean's ethereal aura and Pisces is attracted to Leonian qualities of strength and self awareness...the domineering force in Leo can swipe a Piscean off their feet but Pisces responds with sensitivity and surrounds Leo with love...soon becoming a magical partnership.. Pisces prefer privacy where Leo craves attention.

Leo operates on very different levels emotionally.. is open and expressive of her emotions; while Pisces well he can be overwhelmed by feeling and struggles... a potential mis-match requires lots of work and commitment to this pairing.. Elementally this is a fire and water its best, it can be steamy in a good way... and oh my days it wasπŸ’ŸπŸ’œπŸ’™πŸ’š

Thanks Mystic Maz, we will be sure to check out the accuracy of your predictions later. The other leonian trait that should be noted is their love of the new and extraordinary; they despair of dull, regular routines and if faced with such, they will simply create their own drama and excitement. So beware Danny Mac; you have been warned.

Apparently Danny relishes the challenge:

"I Can Not Wait to start the journey with this girl. I can't even explain how amazing she".  X πŸ˜ƒ....

In the meantime, the dream team arrives at boot camp, along with the 14 other celebs and PRO dancers.[2]  Let's do this!

It's time for Danny to be put through his paces. But remember Danny Boy, you did ask for it. You wanted a drill sergeant to whoop you into shape. Well meet bossy chick. She is gonna do just that! And when the going 
gets tough you will have to beg for mercy!



At least Oti had a good time at boot camp. 

Oti Mabuse/tweets:  3 weeks with dannymaconline has been probably the best time I’ve ever had with
anyone!!!  Whatever happens tonight Danny you have been the ultimate best in everything, have fun, stay focused and #letsdance#teamdoti #week1#chacha.

What about you Danny, how was it for you? Oh dear, is that you on the floor? 

Danny Mac/tweets:  @otimabuse whatever happens tonight, this has been THE BEST partner & has pushed me beyond what I ever thought possible. Thanks kiddo! #LetsDoThis. 


"The adventure was the reason I wanted to take part in Strictly"  Danny said.  "I've always had the luxury of hiding behind a character when people see me; so going out there on a dance floor as myself in front of so many people is really terrifying”!

@Oti Mabuse Listen... you can walk in a straight line and stand up straight. Lol that's all I need for week 1…πŸ˜ƒ

Danny Mac @dannymaconline... And you make me so much... less rubbish.  You're the best kiddo. Bring on this weekend!!!πŸ˜ƒ

But first things first before curtain up; let's pimp-my-celebrity:

Week 1 - Cha Cha

After three weeks of early mornings and late nights with the Drill Sergeant just to learn the first routine, Danny is about to face the crucible and its terrifying.  The level of anxiety is overwhelming.

There is no character to hide behind.  Not here.  It’s as if he is about to stand naked in front of millions of people on live television! Nerves get the better of Danny; he literally wants to vomit. 

But on he goes, longing for the moment when he is holding Oti's head in the palm of his hand and it's over. Phew!  After this baptism of fire Danny and Oti agree to create a character for each routine.

A hug of deliverance...

It was terrifying to begin with but it was also "the most incredible feeling I've ever had in my life" said Danny while Oti looks on simply beaming with pride and agreeing with judge Darcey B that her boy had done good:
"It was absolutely packed full of everything and more” said Darcey, “I'm shocked - that a man that can actually work his hips".

Oh yeah Darcey, 'you ain't seen nuffin yet'.

Our team scored 8*8*7*8 and occupy joint second place on the leaderboard. Not bad for a first outing!

@OtiMabuse Still buzzing from how amazing @dannymaconline was last night thanks for all the lovely response, we both appreciate them #strictly

Oti and Danny had set the bar beyond high. Well, if that was just the beginning what was to come in the following weeks? We waited with bated breath for the next show! And we were not disappointed.


Week 2 - Viennese Waltz

On this week's menu is the most enjoyable and deliciously dramatized version of the Viennese Waltz with a touch of American Smooth. This will be a combination of Danny's acting skills - a characterization - blended with Oti's need to push the boundaries and introduce something fresh and different.  But how would head judge Len Goodman, that stickler for tradition, take it? Would he approve or would our team feel his disapproval?Oti had no idea but she was going to do it anyway and Danny Mac was a willing accomplice.

. But what went on in the training room before hand?
Danny this is a classic and traditional waltz where we literally fly around the room but gracefully. Posture is important here.  All parts of your body must be in perfect alignment. No slouching.  Arms and head held up at the right angle, back straight, bum in. You got that?

 No, you seem to have some difficulty with this one. Wait, I have an idea...why don’t we try this?

You're kidding me right? Do you really expect me to wear that?  A bicycle handle? I don't think so.
Watch my lips. Who's the boss?


I don' believe this? {sigh}

Can you keep this posture up for the whole routine - head to the left, back straight?

Keep that arm up straight and square or I'll pinch you.

And now show me how you move. And he did just that! We loved it and so did Craig Revel Horwood. Wow you a fantastic dancer, he said.

'You were a waltzing heartthrob. You acted like a star. The story was brilliant', added Bruno.

It did not quite transport head judge Len to ‘Old Vienna’, as Oti had deftly blended in a touch of American Smooth, but he liked it. That response sent Oti into a paroxysm of joy. She had taken a gamble, and it had paid off.

And that dress Oti. Simply beautiful. Into the Green Room for Review & reflection with Zeebeezoobee
– known to the uninitiated as Zoe Ball.

At the end of Act I the professional has nothing but praise for her 
celebrity partner:

@OtiMabuse Words cannot explain how proud I am of you @dannymaconline this week has been hard but you have managed to trust and believe and stay focus... a toast to youπŸ’™

Fourteen other celebs began this journey with Danny Mac and at the end of the second round of the competition one of them –  Melvin Odoom, radio DJ – hangs up his dancing shoes.[1]

For Danny Mac it's back into the training room with bossy chick to prepare and rehearse for the next performance. Oh Yeah, into the breach once more dear Danny.
Act I had gone we take a short intermission before Act 2.


[1] Strictly Celebrities 2016: Anastacia – Singer; Ed Balls, former politician, now Harvard University Lecturer; Tameka Empson – Actress; Claudia Frangapane – Gymnast; Leslie Joseph – Actress; Daisy Lowe – Model & Actress; Danny Mac – Actor; Naga Muchetty, TV Presenter, Melvin Odoom, Radio DJ; Ore Oduba – TV Sports Presenter; Louise Redknapp – former member, Girl Band Eternal; Judge Robert Rinder, Barrister & Reality TV judge; Greg Rutherford, Athlete; Laura Whitmore – TV Presenter; Will Young – Singer;

[2] Acknowledgements for source materials: BBC + @dannymaconline + @otimabuse + Linda Kent
[3] Related posts
[4] Amari Blaize (Executive Editor) Maria Connolly (Contributing Editor) Maisie Rodway (Consultant Editor) Denise Guyett (Copy Editor)

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