Bruno Tonioli is welcoming Tyra Banks to Dancing With the Stars after the model was announced earlier this week as the new host of the ABC dance competition, replacing longtime lead host Tom Bergeron. In a quoted retweet shared to his official account on Wednesday featuring an interview from Good Morning America with Banks of the announcement, the choreographer and judge expressed how he was "very excited" to be working with her on the show.
Tonioli also issued a message for Bergeron, sharing how he would "miss" his friend very much. "We had an amazing 15 years [DWTS] your charm Witt (sic) professionalisms have being (sic) integral to the show success," he wrote. While the ballroom dancer was able to express himself verbally, co-judge Carrie Ann Inaba spoke out about the exits, admitting she got emotional over the news. "I feel like it was just such sudden news," Inaba said, adding how her heart breaks for both Bergeron and co-host, Erin Andrews. "I cried when I heard the news, as well as, I think a lot of our fans did."
After the news was revealed on Tuesday night by the network, the "smize" queen issued a statement about her foray into the reality TV competition, admitting she was a big fan of the show while referencing Bergeron's legacy. "I've been a fan of DWTS since its beginning," Banks said in the statement. "The fun mixed with raw emotion, seeing celebrities push past their comfort zones, the sizzling dance performances... it's always transported me to my days of turning it up 10 notches on the catwalk. Tom has set a powerful stage, and I'm excited to continue the legacy and put on my executive producer and hosting hats."
Tonioli's welcome comes just days after Bergeron revealed he was ousted by the show in a tweet, admitting ABC would "be continuing without" him, ending his 15-year stint on the series. The longtime TV personality and ABC mainstay touted his time on the show as "incredible" and "the most unexpected gift" of his career. "I'm grateful for that and for the lifelong friendships made. That said, now what am I supposed to do with all of these glitter masks?" he said.
In addition to Bergeron's firing, Andrews was also removed from her position as co-host. The sports broadcaster said she "will always cherish" her time in the ballroom while giving a shoutout to Bergeron, the DWTS judges, and the show's dancers. "Thank you ABC and the entire Dancing With the Stars family for 6 memorable seasons," she wrote in a tweet. "Those years wouldn't have been as special without my loving host Tom. Bergeron, the talented dancers, and witty judges. I will always cherish my days on that set, even if I wasn't the best at walking in heels."