The ABC long-running show “Dancing with the Stars” is coming back for its 18th season to amuse its fans with new cast and great performances. As has become tradition, the unveiling occurred Tuesday morning during “Good Morning America,” with the celebrity cast on hand live from from Glendale.
The biggest surprise is the dynamic ice dancing duo of Meryl Davis and Charlie White, fresh off their gold-medal win at the Sochi Olympics. White and Davis, who have competed for 17 years as a team, are in terrific shape and for sure know how to use their feet properly.
In another surprise, pro dancer Maksim Chmerkovskiy, the bad boy of the ballroom and favorite, will return after sitting out last season to much fanfare to dance with Davis.
They have even worked with “DWTS” pro Derek Hough, who choreographed their performances on ice. This season, Hough will be teamed with 2014 U.S. Paralympic snowboarder Amy Purdy. Purdy, who lost both of her legs as a teenager and pushed to become a world-champion adaptive snowboarder, is the first paralympian in the show’s history.
When the two first met, Hough, 28, asked Purdy, 34, what she was most excited about for her upcoming turn on the show. “I’m excited about the dancing, of course,” she said.
As a former pro hockey player, Sean Avery is trading in the ice for a dance floor. The athlete/model will dance with pro partner Karina Smirnoff.
Diana Nyad, world-record holding swimmer and a writer by trade, will dance with Henry Byalikov, aa veteran of Australia’s “So You Think You Can Dance”, “Strictly Dancing” and “Dancing With the Stars”.
Last year, 64-year-old Nyad became the first person to swim from Cuba to Florida without the aid of shark cage. She swam from Havana to Key West, a total of 110 miles. It was her fifth attempt, says E!Online.
Among the TV celebrities is the blond beauty from the 90s’ hit series “Full House” Candace Cameron Bure, who recently released a book called “Balancing It All: My Story of Juggling Priorities and Purpose,” will be paired with pro dancer Mark Ballas.
The 39-year-old mathematician and best-selling author, best known for her work on “The Wonder Years” as Winner Cooper, Danica McKellar has decided to take a hiatus from solving math equations to bust a move or two on “DWTS” with Valentin Chmerkovskiy.
Other celebrity contestants include “Real Housewives of Atlanta” star NeNe Leakes, James Maslow of the TV show and music group Big Time Rush, and pop star Cody Simpson, who is the competitor in this season lineup.
The hit ABC show that returns back on March 17 is full of surprises this season, as it has announced the replacement of host Brooke Burke-Charvet with sports host Erin Andrews, as well as introduced unprecedented format in which viewers can vote to switch celebrities and their pro partners mid-season.
“You have to change things every so often to keep them fresh,” says executive producer Conrad Green.