Dancing With the Stars pro dancer Jenna Johnson admitted she was "nervous" about becoming one-half of the first same-sex pairing in the show's 30-season history. Johnson is paired with social media icon and former Dance Moms star JoJo Siwa, and they have earned some of the best scores of the season. Although Johnson, 27, was nervous at first, she told Ellen DeGeneres Thursday that she immediately said yes when she was offered the chance to dance with Siwa, 18.
"I'm embarrassed to say that when I first found out I would be dancing with a female, I was a little bit nervous, just how everyone was going to take it, what the response was gonna be," Johnson said on Thursday's episode of The Ellen DeGeneres Show, via TooFab. However, the nervousness faded once producers asked her to do it. She "immediately" agreed. "And then, meeting JoJo and just the courage that she has given me so much strength and I've never looked back," Johnson said. "I can't even remember what it's like to dance with a guy anymore. I'm like, that's old news."
This is Johnson's sixth season as a pro dancer on DWTS after previously serving as a member of the troupe. She won Season 26 with ice skater Adam Rippon. Her husband, Val Chmerkovskiy, is paired with another social media star, Olivia Jade Giannulli, during Season 30. Both Giannulli and Siwa are among the last eight remaining contestants in Season 30. Incredibly, Siwa and Johnson were almost eliminated on Monday, as they were one of the bottom-two teams despite their incredible scores from the judges. The judges unanimously chose to save Siwa and Johnson, sending Mike "The Miz" Mizanin and Witney Carson home.
If Johnson and Siwa somehow lose DWTS, the two will be "livid" if they lose, Siwa told Us Weekly. "I actually talked to Jen about this a couple of days ago. I was like, 'We are both going to be livid [if we lose], obviously, because we're super competitive and we want to win, of course,'" Siwa said. "But at the end of the day, this experience has already been more than anything I've ever done before that I've already won, and it's been such a journey."
Earlier on Ellen, Siwa said it was "just insane" for her to be considered a gay icon at 18, but she is ready to live up to that title. When she was offered a chance to do DWTS, she immediately thought how "weird" it would be for her to dance with a male partner. She almost agreed to do that, until she learned she could dance with another woman. "It's impacted so many young kids in such a way that hearing adults say, 'I wish I had someone like you when I was little,' that makes me know that the kids that are little have someone like me to look at," Siwa told DeGeneres. DWTS airs Mondays at 8 p.m. ET on ABC. Siwa also stars in Siwa Dance Pop Revolution, which launches on Nov. 9 on Peacock.