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‘DWTS’ Reveals Cast for 30th Season


Almost since its first debuted in 2005, ABC’s Dancing with the Stars has relied, at least partly, on stunt-casting by bringing on controversial celebrities unto the dance floor. Sometimes they were involved in recent scandal. Other times they were people known for big egos or political views. Some times they were just elderly and people tuned in to see if they still had the moves. Oftentimes they didn’t.

Last year’s stunt-casting feat involved firing longtime hosts Tom Bergeron and Erin Andrews and replacing the duo with Tyra Banks who also became an executive producer of the show. And the show became more about Tyra and her outrageous outfits and less about the actual dancing. Well, she’s back for what might be the show’s last dance. Though ABC boasts that the show’s last season run ranked as the number one “entertainment series in its two-hour time slot among Adults 18-49” and the series finished among “last season’s Top 5 most-watched unscripted series with total viewers”, the show’s ratings were significantly lower than season’s past. Even so, ABC is still banking on Tyra having all of the show’s recent promos featuring Tyra instead of the dancers or even the judges.

For 2021, DWTS not only welcomes back head judge Len Goodman but a live audience as well. As for this season’s stars, the list is full of not-so-well-knowns were announced today on Good Morning America including a WWE “legend”, another “housewife”, “Bachelor” and even a Peloton instructor! This is not exactly the cast that was to “blow me away” as Banks put it in a recent preview commercial.

However, this season does feature a few big names including Olympian Suni Lee, NBA star Iman Shumpert and actor Brian Austin Green. But the stuntcasting choice for the season is the bubbly YouTube star, JoJo Siwa whose dancing partner will be another woman. This marks the first time that the show has featured a same-sex dancing duo on the show though they have been featured on various international versions of the show. Siwa has a huge following, mostly teen girls who has just enough talent and energy to go far. However, I’m not sure that her personality will be infectious enough to win over viewers who are not familiar with the young woman.

As with previous seasons, viewers will have to tune to the show to find out who will be dancing with whom. Here is the list of stars featured on Tyra Banks’ … I mean, ABC’s Dancing with the Stars this season:

Stars

  • Country singer Jimmie Allen
  • Spice Girl singer Melanie C 
  • Christine Chiu, founder of Beverly Hills Plastic Surgery
  • Actor Brian Austin Green
  • Actress Melora Hardin
  • Social media star Olivia Jade 
  • Former “Bachelor” Matt James
  • Talks show host Amanda Kloots
  • Actor Martin Kove
  • Gold medal Olympian Suni Lee 
  • WWE Superstar Mike “The Miz” Mizanin 
  • “Housewife” Kenya Moore
  • Peloton star instructor Cody Rigsby
  • NBA star Iman Shumpert 
  • Popstar JoJo Siwa 

Dancers

  • Brandon Armstrong
  • Lindsay Arnold
  • Alan Bersten
  • Sharna Burgess
  • Cheryl Burke
  • Witney Carson
  • Artem Chigvintsev
  • Val Chmerkovskiy
  • Sasha Farber
  • Jenna Johnson
  • Daniella Karagach
  • Pasha Pashkov
  • Gleb Savchenko
  • Emma Slater
  • Britt Stewart

Dancing with the Stars 30th season debuts on Monday, September 20 at 8 p.m. on ABC.

Jeffrey Totey View All

I write about pop culture, arts and entertainment in the greater Seattle area.

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