Derek and Julianne Hough
Derek and Julianne Hough
Courtesy of fac-ul-ty productions

Julianne and Derek Hough: Move Live Comes to Houston

Champion dancers Derek and Julianne Hough bring their newest show, Move Live on Tour 2015, to Houston. "It's a really fun,  high energy show," Derek Hough tells us during a rare break between rehearsals. The brother-sister pair, famous for their work on “Dancing With the Stars," co-created, choreographed and produced the show, working with choreographers Napoleon and Tabitha Dumo and Kyle Hanagami. 

In a nod to his original aspirations of being a heavy metal singer, Hough calls the show "a rock concert for dance." There's no storyline, but there is a natural progression to the show. 

"It flows from one style to the other, but no, there's no story," he explains. "We cover everything. We have the most beautiful contemporary scenes. We have traditional ballroom, hip-hop, tangos, samba, salsa. We're pretty much covering the gamut of styles.  Musically, we have EDM music, classic rock-and-roll, Elvis Presley, Frank Sinatra and stuff you're hearing on the radio right now. In each number you see something different." 

Among the many styles seen in the show is the traditional big splashy show number reminiscent of Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers. 

"We were looking at the show [one] night and I said, 'There's something missing. We're missing a color.' And what we realized is that we were missing a classic Fred-and-Ginger number. So we threw that in. We choreographed it [that] night around midnight, and now it's in there."

Hough says they perform in the style made popular by Fred and Ginger, but are careful to copy them. "We definitely play tribute to them. Like lots of dancers, we were inspired by them and  it's nice to have a top-hat-and-tails number in the show but this is us, not Fred and Ginger. We have our own take on the style." 

Each style seen in the show requires specialized training for performance at this level. Hough says, fortunately, the two are versatile and the pair trained in jazz, ballroom, contemporary and tap dancing. Hough says. "We focused on Latin ballroom dances but we trained in a lot of disciplines. And we have ten dancers on the show with us; each of them have their own strengths." 

Hough says, "You know, we love doing this. We just love it. For Julianne and me part of the fun is doing it together. We get caught up in work and rehearsing and everything and it's easy to lose sight of the fact that this is really cool to be able to share this with someone you love."

While the Houghs enjoy performing, being on stage is just part of the focus of the Move Live Tour. "For us, we want for people to move. Emotion is motion to us and we want audiences to experience that same thing. To feel energized and inspired. It's a show, but we don't want people to just watch. We want them to get up and move. The success of the [last] tour was great, but what sustains us is really seeing the people in the audience want to move. That's the goal for both us." 

See Move Live on Tour 2015 with Julianne and Derek Hough at 7:30 p.m. on June 17. Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion, 2005 Lake Robbins Drive. For information, call 281-363-3300 or visit woodlandscenter.org. $35 to $75. 

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