Duluth can be 'Feeling Good' as Daniel Durant cracks top 9 on 'Dancing with the Stars'

The actor and his dance partner, Britt Stewart, charmed the judges with their sunny performance. Music star Michael Buble was among those impressed.

A woman and man in matching white dance outfits perform together on a stage. They look toward one another with confidence as their arms extend.
Britt Stewart and Daniel Durant performed a foxtrot to "Feeling Good" Monday night on "Dancing with the Stars."
Contributed / ABC / Eric McCandless
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DULUTH — Daniel Durant advanced Monday night on the Disney+ reality competition show "Dancing with the Stars." Performing a winning foxtrot to the song "Feeling Good," the Duluth actor and his dance partner, Britt Stewart, avoided elimination to join nine couples remaining from an original roster of 16.

"I have a man crush," singer Michael Buble, a one-night addition to the judging panel, told Durant. "I love you, dude."

Five judges stand behind branded "Dancing with the Stars" table. At center, one man plants a kiss on the cheek of another, smiling, man.
Judge Derek Hough made a physical display of his appreciation for singer and guest judge Michael Buble during Monday's "Dancing with the Stars" competition.
Contributed / ABC / Eric McCandless

Buble came in for more praise than any of the dancers, on a night built around his music. "Thank you for your genius," said co-host Tyra Banks to the Canadian singer, who performed twice on the show.

"Everyone tonight was really inspired by Michael Buble," added judge Bruno Tonioli.

Leaning into Durant's acting prowess, "Team Sign to Shine" made a point of studying their song's lyrics and accentuating its themes in their performance. Written for a 1964 musical, "Feeling Good" was made famous through a recording by Nina Simone the following year.


"Since I can't hear the song, I don't know how to interpret the emotion or the lyrics," said Durant, who is deaf, via ASL interpreter Gabriel Gomez. Stewart, continued Durant, "teaches me how the words sound and how to connect the emotion, and I want to put that in my performance and every dance move."

The judges praised Durant's continued improvement. Though he and Stewart earned solid scores for their two dances last week, they were the first couple eliminated from a dance marathon competition, resulting in a low total score.

A woman and man hold a foxtrot frame in a spotlight, wearing matching white dance outfits on a stage. They look at one another with confident smiles.
Britt Stewart and Daniel Durant took the spotlight Monday night on "Dancing with the Stars."
Contributed / ABC / Eric McCandless

"When I was growing up and having hard times, every day I had to think, 'It's a new day,'" said Durant in a rehearsal clip, citing a "Feeling Good" lyric. "I have to do this."

At the end of the night, country artist Jessie James Decker was eliminated. Durant and Stewart, along with the other eight remaining couples, will dance again Monday at 7 p.m. The theme, appropriately, will be Halloween.

Find something to do this week in the Northland.

Arts and entertainment reporter Jay Gabler joined the Duluth News Tribune in February 2022. His previous experience includes eight years as a digital producer at The Current (Minnesota Public Radio), four years as theater critic at Minneapolis alt-weekly City Pages, and six years as arts editor at the Twin Cities Daily Planet. He's a co-founder of pop culture and creative writing blog The Tangential; and a member of the National Book Critics Circle. You can reach him at or 218-279-5536.
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