Hernandez to Compete on Season 23 of ABC’s “Dancing with the Stars”

Laurie Hernandez is heading from the beam to the ballroom…

The 16-year-old Puerto Rican gymnast, who helped lead Team USA’s Women’s Gymnastics team to gold at the 2016 Rio Games, has joined ABC’s Dancing with the Stars for Season 23.

Laurie Hernandez

Hernandez, who won an individual silver medal for her balance beam routine at the 2016 Summer Olympics, will be paired with professional dancer Valentin Chmerkovskiy.

But Hernandez isn’t the only Hispanic celebrity hitting the dance floor this season…

Controversial Olympic swimmer Ryan Lochte, will compete this season. The 32-year-old half-Cuban American swimmer and 12-time Olympic medalist, who said he made a “very big mistake” when he claimed to have been held up at gunpoint during the Rio Games, will be paired with professional dancer Cheryl Burke.

Meanwhile, former The Fosters star Jake T. Austin will also make a bid for the Mirror Ball trophy. The 21-year-old part-Puerto Rican, Argentine and Spanish actor will be paired with professional dancer Jenna Johnson.

Other celebrity competitors set to foxtrot their way onto the show include Former Texas governor and GOP presidential candidate Rick Perry, Detroit Lions wide receiver Calvin Johnson, Indy race car driver James Hinchcliffe, Brady Bunchs Maureen McCormick, actress Marilu Henner, Amber Rose, rapper/reality star Vanilla Ice, R&B singer Kenneth “Babyface” EdmondsLittle Women: LA’s Terra Jole, and country music singer/actress Jana Kramer.

Season 23 will see the return of pros Derek and Julianne Hough, who last appeared in 2015. Derek, a six-time Dancing champ, will be back as a dancer, while Julianne will serve as a judge.

Also returning is pro Maksim Chmerkovskiy, He last appeared in 2014 when he and Olympic ice dancer Meryl Davis won the mirror ball trophy in Season 18. And Burke is back, after leaving the show in 2014.

Julianne Hough, a former pro dancer on the show, is expected to be joined at the judge’s table by Carrie Ann InabaBruno Tonioli and Len Goodman, who judged with Hough the past two iterations of the ballroom dance competition series.

Here are the new season’s dance pairings:

Cheryl Burke with Ryan Lochte
Maksim Chmerkovskiy with Amber Rose
Valentin Chmerkovskiy with Laurie Hernandez
Emma Slater with Rick Perry
Derek Hough with Marilu Henner
Artem Chigvintsev with Maureen McCormick
Sasha Farber with Terra Jole
Witney Carson with Vanilla Ice
Lindsay Arnold with Calvin Johnson
Jenna Johnson with Jake T. Austin
Allison Holker with Babyface
Sharna Burgess with James Hinchcliffe
Gleb Savchenko with Jana Kramer

The new season of Dancing With The Stars premieres on Monday, September 12.

It’s Official… Mota to Compete on ABC’s “Dancing with the Stars”

It’s official… Bethany Mota will be shaking her tailfeather on television soon.

The 18-year-old half-Mexican YouTube vlogger and fashionista, as previously rumored, has been selected to compete on Season 19 of ABC’s Dancing With the Stars.

Bethany Mota

Mota, who recently won Choice Female Web Star at the Teen Choice Awards, is among the 13 new dancers for the upcoming season of DWTS, which will premiere on Monday, September 15.

The beauty guru’s YouTube channel — macbarbie07 (7 million subscribers) — features hair, makeup, fashion and DIY tutorials. It earned her a fashion line at Aéropostale, and she was featured as part of a YouTube ad campaign.

Paired with professional dancer Derek Hough, Mota will compete for the coveted mirror ball trophy against the likes of Olympian Lolo Jones, Mean GirlsJonathan Bennett, Fresh Prince of Bel-Air‘s Alfonso Ribeiro and NASCAR great Michael Waltrip.

Other competitors include Duck Dynasty’s Sadie Robertson, actress Lea Thompson of Back to the Future, Ultimate Fighting Champion Randy Couture, legendary comedian Tommy Chong, celebrated talk show host Tavis Smiley, as well as famed fashion designer Betsey Johnson, Pretty Little Liars actress Janel Parrish and General Hospital alum Antonio Sabato, Jr.

Co-hosts Tom Bergeron and Erin Andrews announced the celebrity cast live Thursday morning on Good Morning America in Times Square.

The addition of Julianne Hough, named as the fourth judge last month, will add some pizazz this season. Hough won two mirror-ball trophies as a pro during her DWTS run, and will have a permanent spot at the judges’ table next to veterans Len Goodman, Carrie Ann Inaba and Bruno Tonioli.

 

Martin to Serve as Guest Judge on ABC’s “Dancing with the Stars”

Life’s a ball(room) for Ricky Martin

The 42-year-old Puerto Rican singer and actor will serve as a guest judge on Season 18 of ABC’s Dancing with the Stars.

Ricky Martin

Martin will be one of a handful of guest judges on the network’s celebrity dance competition throughout the season, including Good Morning America anchor Robin Roberts and former DWTS professional dancer, singer and actress Julianne Hough.

During his stint, Martin will appear alongside regular panelists Len GoodmanBruno Tonioli and Carrie Ann Inaba.

There’s no word yet on when Martin will make his guest appearance on the show.

Martin most recently served as a coach on The Voice Australia and debuted in the first episode of season two, on April 7, 2013.

Bryan Quicksteps Her Way to the Lead on “DTWS: All-Stars”

She had to stump for votes to land a spot on Dancing with the Stars: All-Stars… But Sabrina Bryan is proving that she belongs on the ballroom floor.

After slicing her arm on a difficult move during rehearsals, all eyes were on Bryan during Monday night’s performance show to see if she’d be able to pull off her oh-so-challenging quickstep routine injury-free.

Sabrina Bryan

And the 27-year-old half-Mexican actress/singer and former Cheetah Girl didn’t miss a step, giving a show-stopping performance to a cover of Ram Jam’s “Black Betty” that thoroughly impressed the judges.

Bryan, who competed in the fifth season of ABC’s hit reality celebrity dancing competition, earned 26 points out of a possible 30 – including the first 9 of the season, from DWTS judge Carrie Ann Inaba, who said she’d never seen such lines on Dancing with the Stars

Following their impressive quickstep, Bryan — a fan favorite — and her professional dance partner Louis Van Amstel ended the performance show a the top of the leaderboard.

DWTS judge Bruno Tonioli, who awarded the pair an 8.5, likened her to Ginger Rogers “at her best … a true dazzler.”

Gushed fellow judge Len Goodman (who also gave the pair an 8.5), who praised the couple’s upper body control and especially the legwork: “This season, the hits just keep on coming.”

Levy’s Sizzling Samba Results in Another Perfect Score on DWTS

Following two top-notch performances, it looks like William Levy could be headed to the Dancing with the Stars finale…

During Monday night’s semi-finals, the 31-year-old Cuban American actor demonstrated his ballroom dancing prowess by performing a sizzling samba and tantalizing tango that earned raves from the judges.

William Levy on DWTS

In the first round, Levy and his partner Cheryl Burke took to the floor to perform a high-octane tango to the Eurythmics’ “Sweet Dreams,” which received 28 points out of 30 from the judges.

“Powerful, firm, convincing, full of animal magnetism,” professed judge Bruno Tonioli. “No doubt who was on top on that. You were like the dictator of the tango!”

But it was Levy’s dance in the second round that could just seal his fate as a DWTS finalist…

Performing to Sergio Mendes’ Portuguese classic “Magalenha” and dressed in a hot pink button down and skin-tight white pants, Levy’s oh-so-marvelous moves had the audience clapping throughout, especially when he shook his bon bon to the delight of the women in the crowd.

“I’ve never looked at a man’s bum for so long in my life,” said judge Len Goodman as the crowd broke into laughter. “The hunk with his junk in the trunk. The rhythm that you brought out was just fantastic.”

“I’m going to die with bum envy,” said Tonioli unable to contain his excitement for Levy’s performance.

“You lived up to every expectation,” Carrie Ann Inaba cooed. “Amazing! Good job.”

Levy’s samba resulted in his second perfect score of the season, following his fantastic foxtrot last week.

When all was said and done, Levy found himself in second place behind television host Maria Menounos.

Levy Earns First Perfect Score on DWTS…

With his chiseled body and striking looks, William Levy may be considered a perfect specimen… But during Monday night’s Dancing with the Stars episode, he proved to be absolutely perfect on the dance floor.

Following his individual performance, the 31-year-old Cuban American telenovela star earned a score of 30 for his slick foxtrot with partner Cheryl Burke—Levy’s first perfect score of the season.

William Levy on DWTS

And, the hunky heartthrob earned serious praise from judges Carrie Ann Inaba, Len Goodman and Bruno Tonioli.

“You couldn’t be more suave or debonair if you tried. I hate you even more,” Tonioli joked. Inaba added, “So much fun to watch!”

After the contestants received their individual scores, they danced in the “Trio Challenge” with an additional dance pro. Levy and Burke, matched up with Tony Dovolani, to dance a near-perfect paso doble that earned 9s from the judges.

With the added points from the trio dance, Levy stayed in first place on the leaderboard with 57/60.

Levy’s “Ethereal” Waltz Impresses DWTS Judges

There’s no doubt William Levy knows how to waltz this way…

During Monday’s “Classical Night” on ABC’s Dancing with the Stars, the 31-year-old Cuban American telenovela star and his partner Cheryl Burke performed a poignant Viennese waltz across a smoky dance floor while 12-year-old classical singer Jackie Evancho sang “Ave Maria.”

William Levy on DWTS

Along with a standing ovation from the live studio audience, Levy’s waltz received rave reviews from the judges.

“That is true content; that is true dancing,” gushed judge Carrie Ann Inaba. “You find the story in the music and it’s always a story of romance, which is what all ballroom dancing is about. You bring the romance to life!”

Meanwhile, Len Goodman said William and Cheryl didn’t exactly transport him to Vienna… but they did transport him to Austria. And, Bruno Toniolo said Levy had “captured the purity and ethereal quality of the song,” commenting on how he “felt it and lived it.”

In the end, the judges awarded Levy and Burke a total of 27 points for their waltz, making them one of three pairs receiving that score.


Katherine Jenkins continued to impress with a 27-point rumba with Mark Ballas that Len Goodman called “a classic.”

Levy Continues to Wow on DWTS

It may be only the second week of Dancing with the Stars, but William Levy is already building some serious momentum in his quest to win the coveted mirror ball trophy.

Following last week’s top-tier premiere performance of the cha-cha, the 31-year-old Cuban telenovela star returned to the stage on last night’s show to perform a quickstep return with his partner Cheryl Burke. And, Levy didn’t disappoint. The “Brad Pitt of Latin America,” who receives the loudest catcalls from the audience every time he takes the stage, impressed the judges with his dance to George Gershwin’s “Nice Work If You Can Get It.”

William Levy on Dancing with the Stars

Bruno Tonioli called Levy a “matinee idol” who reminded him of Oscar-winner Jean Dujardin from The Artist. Carrie Ann Inaba dubbed him “the Harry Connick Jr. of the ballroom,” adding, “William, you know how to turn up the heat in this ballroom.”

Levy—who earned 25 points for his quickstep—ended the night at the top tier of the leaderboard behind Katherine Jenkins and Roshon Fegan, who both earned 26s.

“We improved from last week and that’s my goal, to slowly climb up the leaderboard and that’s what we did,” said Burke. “I think he has both styles. He can really do the ballroom and the Latin really well. He obviously needs some work, but it’s only week two. This show is about if you’re good at both styles.”

Meanwhile, Levy is taken aback by the overwhelming adoration he’s received since joining the cast of Dancing with the Stars.

“I have no words to explain how good it feels,” Levy told reporters after his performance. “When I was a little boy and I was in Cuba, my dream was to come to America, like 3 years old. And today to be at this position in my life to receive this kind of love in this country, it’s amazing. It’s crazy.”

Levy Receives a Standing Ovation Following His DWTS Performance

William Levy may not have received the highest scores during last night’s Dancing With The Stars premiere… But the heartthrob did manage to get the biggest cheers!

Following his performance of the cha-cha to a cover of Pitbull’s “International Love” with partner Cheryl Burke , the 31-year-old Cuban-born telenovela star and model received a lengthy standing ovation and hysterical screams from the audience.

William Levy on Dancing With The Stars

Levy, known as the “Latin Brad Pitt,” nabbed the second-best score of the night, receiving 24 points out of a total 30. And he even got some high praise from the judges.

Bruno Tonioli called him “the hottest package of the season.” Said a fawning Carrie Ann Inaba: “I’d like to thank ABC for my job. … You can dance. … I really like the way you move.” Len Goodman praised his control, saying “Well done.”

Said Levy of the chaos in the audience: “I appreciate the love.”

Sharing the premiere’s top score of 26 were two celebrities were former child star and Family Matters actor Jaleel White (a.k.a. Urkel) and British opera singing sensation Katherine Jenkins.

The night’s lowest scores belonged to Gavin DeGraw, Melissa Gilbert and Martina Navratilova, who all grabbed just 20 points.