"I've decided to focus my energies on some other exciting endeavors," Smirnoff tells fans

By Lanford Beard
Updated February 11, 2015 09:20 AM
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Credit: Jason Kempin/Getty

Dancing with the Stars announced which pros will return for season 20 on Wednesday – and one who notably will not.

Last season’s champion Witney Carson returns alongside fan favorite (and two-time champion) Mark Ballas. Seasoned pros and fellow mirrorball winners Tony Dovolani, Peta Murgatroyd and Kym Johnson are back in the mix. Newer pros including Val Chmerkovskiy, Sharna Burgess, Allison Holker, Emma Slater and Artem Chigvintsev were also confirmed to return.

Noticeably absent, Karina Smirnoff – a pro since season 3 and the season 12 champion – posted on Instagram Tuesday night that she would not be returning for season 20: “I’ve decided to focus my energies on some other exciting endeavors.”

She continued, “I have absolutely loved dancing for all of you for all these years and feel blessed to have been given a platform to put my passion for dance, choreography and creativity on display.”