DANCING WITH THE ATHLETES
With a cast of all athletes, the upcoming season of the ABC reality dance competition season will be unlike any before.
Among the athletes competing are Olympic ice skaters Tonya Harding, Adam Rippon and Mirai Nagasu; Olympic snowboarder Jamie Anderson and luger Chris Mazdzer; NBA legend Kareem Abdul-Jabbar; Notre Dame’s national championship hero Arike Ogunbowale; former pro softball player Jennie Finch Daigle; retired professional baseball outfielder Johnny Damon; and Washington Redskins’ cornerback Josh Norman.
But the changes don’t stop at the cast — the new season will also feature an entirely revamped set.
PULLING OUT ALL THE STOPS
The revamped set will feature a new screen on the main stage that can split open, and the lights make it as glamorous as ever.
Instead of the show’s red room, there will be a skybox for all the cast’s chats to take place.
This season’s stage will feature a glittering jumbotron hanging above the ballroom floor in place of the usual giant mirror ball.
THE GAME PLAN
During the April 30 premiere, the cast will take the stage for their first performances with the following songs and dances:
- Adam Rippon and partner Jenna Johnson will be performing the cha-cha to “Sissy That Walk” by RuPaul.
- Arike Ogunbowale and partner Gleb Savchenko will dance the salsa to “Them Girls” by Whitney Myer.
- Chris Mazdzer and partner Witney Carson will dance the salsa to “Mr. Put It Down” by Ricky Martin and Pitbull.
- Jamie Anderson and partner Artem Chigvintsev will dance the Viennese waltz to “Feeling Good” by Avicii.
- Jennie Finch Daigle and partner Keo Motsepe will dance the foxtrot to “All-American Girl” by Carrie Underwood.
- Johnny Damon and partner Emma Slater will dance the foxtrot to “Centerfield” by John Fogerty.
- Josh Norman and partner Sharna Burgess will dance the cha-cha to “Finesse” by Bruno Mars.
- Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and partner Lindsay Arnold will dance the cha-cha to “Signed, Sealed, Delivered” by Stevie Wonder.
- Mirai Nagasu and partner Alan Bersten will dance the salsa to “No Excuses” by Meghan Trainor.
- Tonya Harding and partner Sasha Farber will dance the foxtrot to “When You Believe” by Whitney Houston and Mariah Carey.
EYES ON THE PRIZE
From championship rings to gold medals, the cast has earned sports’ highest honors. Now, they’re competiting for a different type of trophy.
When winners are crowned during the finale on May 21, they’ll receive a new special edition version of the coveted Mirrorball trophy which reads “Athletes.”