Pictured above is Dancing With The Stars pros Chelsie Hightower, Karina Smirnoff, and Cheryl Burke attending an OK! Magazine Pre-Oscar party last night at the Greystone Manor Supperclub in West Hollywood, California. Don’t they look gorgeous? I’m loving Cheryl’s hair! You can view more pictures of them at Zimbio Zimbio and Getty Images.
ADDING: Derek Hough also attended. Be sure to see some amazing takes of him too at Pure Derek Hough.
Good news for Sharna Burgess fans…atleast I think so? According to this tweet from her, she might be back to dance and choreograph on the new season of Dancing With The Stars. As regular fans to the show know, the Australian “Burn The Floor” beauty was a part of the Dancing With The Stars dance troupe last season. If this is set in stone, Season 14 will be Sharna’s second season to dance!!
Too excited to sleep! So close to season 14 #DWTS @DancingABC !!! Can’t wait to dance and choreograph for y’all again!!
USSoccerDotCom caught up with Hope and Maks at a soccer game this week to ask them on Dancing With The Stars. Hope comments about how nervous she was before the show like she is before a soccer game. Maks said she wasn’t nervous, but, “very focused”. Her dress rehearsal was flawless, but, everyone came up to her afterwards and asked her if she ever smiles. It’s funny because Hope says her training for soccer helped her to concentrate on her dance Monday night, but, Maks quickly chimes for how different they are. This is “only the first round” (a warning of how tough things are going to get if they stick around). Maks talks of how great he felt with their performance as well. Hope says she really didn’t lighten up a little to dance until she talked to her soccer mates and friends right before she stepped out on stage. They ask her on her dress and she said Maks designed it (I LOVED HER DRESS, did you? It was my favorite!). They talk of how they are dancing the Jive Monday night, but, Maks says Week 3 is when things will get really interesting because all of the couples will only have 4 days to learn a dance. That’s when we’ll find out who will stay and who will go. Great interview!
Maks has also written a new blog at TV Guide. He talks of he and Hope’s dance last week. He also prepares us for their upcoming Jive and tells us his thoughts on some of the couples. Below is a take. For the full blog, be sure to see the link.
We started the jive prior to the premiere, so we should be good. I’m very happy about the way it’s going right now. I think the biggest challenge with Hope is not just learning the routine, but she needs to learn how to act it out. I know she’s not used to acting and faking it — which is what acting is. I want her to know it’s not bad faking it, like you’re not being true to yourself. It’s part of a performance. If you want to be the best at it, then you have to do certain things to make you the best at it. Acting is part of it.
I thought everyone did great this week. I’m super happy for Val. Congratulations to him for his debut! I was worried about him and Elisabetta. She’s awesome, but she did get a little stiff. Hopefully she will take all the positive things out of this show and use it to her advantage in the second week. I think the quickstep will be a better dance for them and they’ll both learn from the first week. I think Val has a difficult job because Elisabetta is fairly new to this country. Fan base-wise, they’ll probably have a more difficult time. Everybody else on the show has a following here. I went on a campaign Monday night to rally some of my troops to help Val and Elisabetta out and I’m extremely grateful because I think they did a tremendous job keeping both of us on the show. Obviously, I’m first and foremost focused on Hope, but the longer Val stays, the more fun we’ll have. I just want to enjoy the process. I think if audiences embrace her and give her a chance, they will see a lot of growth. Having said that, it’s also a matter of how well they do and how they sparkle and shine. I think they have potential. Val is phenomenal. I’m his biggest fan. They did an awesome routine. I thought the bed idea was hilarious. I loved his respond to Tom Tuesday: “I just wanted to take my shirt off and get in bed.” I love it!
Carson’s performance was also great. He’s very cool. He’s a bit partial toward me and I gave him a shoulder rub. He’s just perfect for this show. He’s super funny, very witty, very clever, very entertaining, and what else do you need from a celebrity on Dancing with the Stars? You want a celebrity who’s secure with themselves, is not afraid to put up a performance, has performing qualities, and does their own thing. And that’s him. I’m not going to lie — and this may come off as me patting myself on the back — but I’m flattered because you have Nancy Grace going, “You’re not Maks,” to Tristan and Carson talking about me, and I’m so honored by that. It really does make me feel like dance is making it higher and higher. I’m still true to my trade. I’m not trying to be the center of attention at all, and I think getting recognized by such people like these is a huge responsibility, but also a huge honor. I’m blessed and having fun.
Even though J.R. was exhausted from several weeks of rehearsals and dancing on Dancing With The Stars, he travelled to Tennessee to talk about how he broke through a “dark place” after the severe burns he suffered from in Iraq. He explains in detail below for how it happened and how he found his life’s purpose afterwards. So touching. Listen below…
Yesterday, Chynna Phillips and hubby, Billy Baldwin, were guests on The Talk! Billy talks about playing Frank Delano on the new season of “Hawaii Five-0″ (I love that show!) and Chynna Phillips talks about Dancing With The Stars. Billy tells mother Kardashian that he wasn’t happy when Rob described Chynna as an “attractive older woman”. He’d rather have her be called “hot” because they are not “old”. They comment how Chynna has the talent to go all the way on Dancing With The Stars while reviving her career. Chynna loves Tony and said she has the best partner! More below.
ADDING: And here is Chynna and Tony on Access Hollywood today….
Just a couple of things capturing our attention. First of all, Special Thanks to Heidi and the winner at Pure Derek Hough, Derek has a new team t-shirt to wear for rehearsals. Hey, a hot guy with a hot car needs a hot shirt!! :) More from where that came from at Heidi’s.Secondly, do you not love it when the couples ‘genuinely’ thank their fans for voting for them? Some go an extra mile to do it at twitter, facebook, etc. Here is what Tristan and Nancy did in thanking their fans.
Lastly, below are some hot new pictures of the Troupe from Sharna Burgess’ Facebook. What a powerhouse they were Tuesday night!! I’m loving them all!! I can’t decide who is my favorite? How about you?
Adding: Below is Harry Connick Jr. with who his pick to win the show….
Let us begin!! The beautiful Peta Murgatroyd was born July 14th in Auckland, New Zealand. At 18 months old, Peta and her family moved to Perth, Australia where her parents could give her brother and her more opportunities in life. According to Peta, her mother always knew she was “artsie” and at 4 years old, Peta started studying to dance. She trained for 12 years at the Kirov Ballet under Madame Lubov Nikonorenko and became a classically trained ballerina. Peta was also trained in Contemporary and Spanish dance! At the age of 16, Peta started to ballroom dance and only after three months of training became an Australian Open and British Youth Latin finalist.
Peta then moved to London, England to further her career and compete. Amongst many international competitions Peta finished 2nd in the Great World City Championships and was a semi-finalist in the Lion City Championships in Singapore. Peta was also a finalist in the Australian Open championships. But, nothing meant more to Peta when she placed 3rd in the world at the British Youth Latin Championships in Blackpool, England in 2006 where she “wanted to live and breathe the life of a dancer”.
In 2004, Peta’s musical theatre career really took off when she was chosen to be a cast member of Burn The Floor. Her lifelong dream of dancing on stage and living the life of a true dancer had come true. Like fellow cast mate Tristan MacManus, she travelled the world with them for 6 years. In August 2009, Burn The Floor hit Broadway. It was at this time Peta was made the lead female dancer.
It was January of 2010, Peta made a decision to pursue a career in film and television. Since that time, Peta has performed on Dancing With The Stars in Australia and America and So You Think You Can Dance in Australia and Holland. Peta has also choreographed and performed with great artists Heart, Rod Stewart, Taio Cruz, Enrique Iglesias, Jennifer Lopez, and New Kids On The Block. Peta also toured with the theatrical dance production “Ballroom With A Twist”.
But, things really started to pop for Peta again in the Spring of 2011. Peta was hired to become a member of the Dancing With The Stars Troupe. Due to her success and quick popularity on the show, she was promoted this Season as a Pro partnered with L.A. Laker Ron Artest.
Peta’s career doesn’t stop with dancing. She’s also done some modeling and recently did some fun spreads for Regard Magazine as well as Pilates Magazine. It’s no wonder ….as well as being beautiful, I’ve always thought she had a natural knack for soaking up the camera just like the dance floor.
Peta dates beloved fan favorite and former Season 10 pro dancer Damian Whitewood who she met in her homeland of Australia. The two reside together in Los Angeles, CA.
Here’s to the lovely Peta and one of my favorite women pros! We hope her run on Dancing With The Stars is a long one and we wish her much success! If you haven’t read our first profile on Tristan MacManus, you can do so here. Stay tuned, Val Chmerkovskiy is next!
Ok, here are Heidi and Court with their personal thoughts on Peta and we’d love to hear yours as well…
Courtney: Are all Kiwis & Aussies blonde, willowy, & gorgeous? Because between Peta & Kym, I’m beginning to think so :-) Seriously though – I think Peta may be the closest thing to a replacement for Edyta that we’ve seen so far. Beautiful girl with a rockin’ body and impossibly long legs, and not afraid to show some skin! She also seems rather soft-spoken & calm like Edyta, which will help when it comes to dealing with potentially squirrely partners. And she and Damian are just PRESH together – very striking, pretty couple, much like Edyta & Alec…only with a bit more personality, methinks ;-) I’m definitely excited to see just what she can do with her partner…and with the other pros, in both team & pro dances.
Heidi: Heh, you said squirrely. :-) Frankly, I have a hard time focusing on Peta when that pic right up there has bare chested Damian in pajama bottoms. Oohh yeah. That’s nice. Anyway, yeah, Peta is gorgeous and she does seem calm – but hopefully she’s not toooo quiet. She didn’t have much to say in one of the rehearsal videos I saw – and I think that was part of Damian’s problem. I think the producers LIKE the pros to talk and have personality – or BE personalities. It certainly doesn’t hurt the show! But we’ll see – we haven’t seen really that much of anyone yet. :-)
So, yes, first up is the amazing, talented, mysterious, handsome, and fun Irishman who has captured hearts and fans quickly on the show, Tristan MacManus!!
Born July 23, 1982, Tristan is a native to Bray, Ireland, which is a small town located on the east coast. Tristan started dancing when he was 9 years old. He, as well as his sister, were first encouraged and introduced to dance by their grandparents, Jon and Phyllis McCann, who were and are also dancers. However, his sister didn’t take to dancing or the attention like Tristan did. She ended up quitting and Tristan continued to dance. However, Tristan also liked soccer. So, he divided up his time between both soccer and dancing. Soccer dominated his time mostly at the time since he wanted to do what his friends were doing and no one really “danced” where he came from. Eventually, Tristan realized he wasn’t as talented at soccer like he was at dancing although even to this day, he’s remained an avid fan of the sport. Tristan then decided to return full time to dancing where he was trained and competed in Latin, Ballroom, Irish, and Jazz dancing. He danced extensively in Ireland and all over Europe capturing numerous titles as a Junior and Amateur at the European and World Championships and the All Ireland Championships.
After winning the All Ireland Championships for the last time in 2000, Tristan was getting burned out of competing. He moved on to perform in musical theater in the successful tour “Simply Ballroom” which initially started in London and then made a run in Las Vegas. After that, he went to London’s West End where he performed in the stage version of “Dirty Dancing.” He served as the production’s Dance Captain and Ballroom Supervisor.
After “Dirty Dancing”, Tristan then danced in the highly successful “Burn The Floor”, which travelled the world from Australia, New Zealand, China, Japan, Singapore, Canada and the U.S.
In 2004, the handsome Irishman also snagged a part and appeared as a dancer in the film “Ella Enchanted” starring Anne Hathaway. He danced with Vivica Fox who played a “Fairy”. You might also be able to see him dancing in this scene?
That’s not all! While taking a break from touring, Tristan became a dance teacher. He taught for a year at Super Shag Dance Studios in Charlestown, Mass.. Tristan also taught in Ireland’s Trinity College and U.C.D.
It’s funny how things lead to another because the producers of Dancing With The Stars first approached Tristan to dance on the show when they saw him dancing in “Burn The Floor”. The call came just after he’d returned to the tour. He had only been back to work in Burn The Floor for two or three weeks, and he had to tell them that he wouldn’t be able to do Dancing With The Stars at that time. Luckily, they were insistent. They came back a couple of months later when Season 12 was first starting and asked if he’d be available. He was immediately added to the new Dancing With The Stars Troupe which, with his popularity, led to a promotion in Season 13 as a Pro paired with Nancy Grace. Nancy has described Tristan as “handsome, but, when the music starts, it’s like someone sprinkled magic on him and he makes a complete transformation.”
Tristan, here’s to you and may your run on Dancing With The Stars be a lengthy one!!
Here are Courtney and Heidi’s feelings, thoughts, knowledge, and predictions on Tristan and we look forward to yours too!!
Courtney: As funny as it may sound, the first thing I thought upon hearing Tristan’s troupe intro last season was “Yes!!! Another fun accent…and it’s not Russian or Austrailian!” :-P I dunno, accents fascinate me – especially Irish & Scottish ones. Tristan just sounds so happy & positive when he talks! He definitely seems like he’s got a good head on his shoulders and is willing to put in the work to really help Nancy shine on the dance floor. And let’s face it: if anyone or anything can endear Nancy to the masses, it’s a bit of the luck o’ the Irish! :-D
Heidi: I think it’s pretty clear that the producers are trying to find the next Derek, Maks or Mark with Tristan – and it looks to me like they made a great selection! What a cutie and I confess to being a sucker for an Irish accent as well. :-) Now, at the risk of being the downer of the group, I will avoid getting too attached to Tristan because, let’s face it, the producers don’t have the best track record for finding a pro THEY consider worthy to stick around for several seasons. I thought Damian, for one, deserved another chance – he was partnered with someone with a tremendous…impact. :-) Nancy is the same sort of partner, albeit for different reasons. I worry for our boy Tristan. Although, if our suspicions about the future of Derek and Maks are accurate, then Tristan may be entering at just the right time. One thing’s for sure, he would ease the pain of losing one of the big dogs. :-)
As some of you have posted in the comments sections and in some twitter chat (including @DWTStroupe), Daria Chesnokova and Sasha Farber might be the replacements for Nicole Volynets and Tristan MacManus in the Dancing With The Stars Dance Troupe. Another dancer that might be dancing in the troupe is Sharna Burgess.
Daria, also known as “Dasha”, is Val Chmerkovskiy’s former dance partner from from 2008 until this year. She is also from the Ukraine like Val. The two have won numerous World dance titles together and have helped to teach at the Dance With Me Soho Studios in New York.
Sasha was born in Russia, but, moved to Australia when he was 13 at which he started dancing. By the time Sasha was 17, he had won the Australian Youth Latin Championships twice and represented Australia at the World Latin Championships. He was featured in the closing ceremony at the 2000 Sydney Olympics and has danced several times on Dancing with the Stars in the past. He is most known for his role in the highly successful dance theatre production Burn The Floor. He has been described as an “explosively, energetic dancer”.
Sharna Burgess, like Sasha, is also from Australia where she studied dance. She has also been a dancer in “Burn The Floor”.
If true, I think these dancers would be the perfect replacements even though I don’t understand why they dropped Nicole? She was fantastic as well.
The three new dancers will join Teddy Volynets, Kiki Nyemchek, and Oksana Dmytrenko who were are 2nd year members of the Dancing With The Stars Dance Troupe.
Can I just say I love the new Dance Troupe on Dancing With The Stars? Yes, it’s great to always see our regular and favorite pros performing unique numbers on the show, but, it’s also exciting to have some new blood and fun personalities. Yes, I am hooked. What’s more and thanks to The Boston Irish, I’m hooked even more on Tristan MacManus. They’ve done a sweet spread detailing out his career and how it came to be including becoming a part of the new Dancing With The Stars Dance Troupe. Below is a take. Note how it mentions Tristan is expecting to return for Season 13. He’s also hoping to be promoted and become one of the featured pros competing with a celebrity. I’d be VERY open to this idea, would you?
The Troupe was a new element this past season—six world-renowned, award-winning dancers who appeared on each of the Tuesday night Results Shows, performing presentation pieces as well as appearing with the special musical guest artists (Hanson, Toby Keith and OneRepublic, among others). McManus also had a chance to choreograph a couple of The Troupe’s numbers himself. He expects to return to the cast when “DWTS” reconvenes for its new season in September. He’s also crossing his fingers about being promoted to become one of the featured pros competing with a celebrity.
While waiting for rehearsals to begin later this summer, he and fellow “DWTS” colleagues Chelsie Hightower and Peta Murgatroyd have been on a USO tour, traveling to military bases around the world, talking with the troops and performing. When we were last in touch, he was in Germany.
A native of Bray, McManus started dancing when he was nine years old, encouraged by his grandparents, Jon and Phyllis McCann, who were, and are, dancers. “They got us into it, myself and my sister. My sister didn’t last too long. She didn’t like the attention, I suppose. Apparently I did,” he said with a laugh.
McManus danced extensively in Ireland and Europe, capturing numerous titles. After winning the All Ireland Championships for the last time in 2000, he moved on to perform in musical theater. Following a highly successful tour of “Simply Ballroom,” initially in London and then in Las Vegas, he was back in London’s West End where he performed in the stage version of “Dirty Dancing.”
You can read more on Tristan at the link. It’s well worth the read!!
So cute! I think he’s my third favorite dancer next to Maks and Derek??!!! :)
Heidi’s Note: My guess is that you’re looking at the dude who will eventually replace Derek and/or Maks. It sure sounded to me like Maks had orginally intended to sit the coming season out (which may be why Tristan was crossing his fingers). Now that he’s back, and Derek is supposedly back (although I’ll believe it when I see it), Tristan might have to wait until Spring 2012. I’d be willing to bet that Derek will have to sit that one out to do promo for his movie and if Maks was planning to sit this one out, why wouldn’t he sit the next one out instead? I don’t envy Tristan – either Derek or Maks are VERY big shoes to fill. Is he up to it?? I couldn’t tell you because, unlike Vogue, the Troupe was pretty much invisible to me.