By Tom Gliatto Alyssa Shelasky Jed Dreben
June 09, 2008 12:00 PM

• The excitable 50-year-old judge from FOX’s hit So You Think You Can Dance kicks up for the new season

ON HER WHOOPING ENTHUSIASM If I don’t scream, people are so upset. If somebody gets to be on the hot-tamale train [one of her catchphrases of praise], they go berserk. But you know, brother, I never know what I’m going to say. Some of the stuff, it just flies right out of my mouth.

ON THE SUCCESS OF DANCE SHOWS I don’t think you could have dreamed this five years ago—dancing just wasn’t on TV. If people asked me what I did, I’d say, “Ballroom dancer,” and they’d say, “What bar do you work at?” Now I could be welcome at the White House.

ON (FINALLY) PUTTING HER FEET UP I have told my manager I want Labor Day weekend and the three days before that off. I’m renting a house with old friends on Lake Tahoe. Just going to chill out.