With just a week to go before the Dancing With The Stars Season 29 cast is revealed, there have already been a few names leaked. Pro dancer Cheryl Burke only dropped clues as to who she will be competing with for the mirror ball trophy, once the season kicks off on Monday, Sept. 14. The celebrity dancers will be introduced on Good Morning America on Wednesday, Sept. 3, and fans already know Bachelorette star Kaitlyn Bristowe and Backstreet Boys singer AJ McLean will be among them.
Burke is "very, very happy" about who she is paired with this season, the two-time mirror ball trophy champion told Entertainment Tonight. "It's somebody who I think will have lots of potential, but is also just a really cool person," Burke said, adding that she had to "spend a lot of time with this person" before taking him to the ballroom. "I think he has some rhythm, so we will see," she said. "Ballroom is a whole other beast."
Burke's pro partner also has facial hair and is "in the business." He also does have some experience with dancing, but not Ballroom dancing. This provides an additional challenge for her. "Sometimes it's harder to untrain somebody with dance experience than it is to teach somebody with a new skill," she told ET. Burke said he has appeared on the show before and is a perfectionist.
Dancing With The Stars Season 29 will be Burke's 23rd, making her the veteran among the pro dancers. She won mirror ball trophies at the end of Seasons 2 and 2 with Drew Lachey and Emmitt Smith. Last season, she was paired with former NFL star Ray Lewis, but they withdrew early in the competition after Lewis suffered an injury. In her ET interview, Burke said she hopes dancing will help bring people together, especially during a difficult time.
"At the end of the day, dancing is something that brings people together," Burke explained. "I think when it comes to the dance world in general, no competitions are happening this year; dance teachers are losing their jobs. Maybe we can find a new way for everybody to still be able to do dance competitions, to still be able to dance, and have dance in their lives. You don't always need to be in front of a live audience."
ABC has not confirmed who else is dancing for the title this season, but McLean announced on Good Morning America Thursday he would be joining. Bristowe was confirmed back in June when Chris Harrison invited her during her episode of The Bachelor: The Greatest Seasons - Ever!. Tiger King star Carole Baskin, actress Anne Heche and Selling Sunset star Chrishell Stause have also reportedly been in talks to join.