Xochitl Gomez and dance partner Val Chmerkovskiy have officially made it to the semifinals of Dancing with the Stars season 32. At the end of episode 9, which featured the music of Taylor Swift, Gomez, and Chmerkovskiy were one of the five couples to land a spot in the next round.
The duo recorded the second-highest score of the evening with a 41. They scored 38 points (two 9s and two 10s) for their quickstep dance to Swift’s “Paper Rings” and won three bonus points for their Viennese waltz to “Lover” during the dance relay.
During “Paper Rings,” Gomez stepped onto the dance floor dressed in a violet vest and matching dress shorts and boots. She and Chmerkovskiy were incredibly elegant as they swept across the floor with precision and grace. There was also a lot of playfulness in the dance, which worked to their advantage since their chemistry is easily some of the best of all the contestants.
Before the judges reviewed their dance, Gomez held up a paper sign that said, “We love you Taylor.” Guest judge and choreographer Mandy Moore, who choreographed Swift’s Eras Tour, called the dance “poetry in motion” and gifted Gomez a friendship bracelet after making her comments.
Bruno Tonioli said the dance showed a “wonderful sense of celebration.” Carrie Ann Inaba called Gomez “the most animated and enthusiastic performer we have ever had,” but added that she noticed Gomez lost some focus during the performance. Derek Hough told Gomez that he wanted to see her in the Finals.
The 10th episode of Dancing with the Stars season 32 airs live next Tuesday (November 28) on ABC, with Xochitl Gomez fighting for a chance to be in the finale.