Pop star JoJo Siwa and Olympian Suni Lee are the first two celebrities tapped to join ABC’s “Dancing With the Stars” for its 30th season. The three-time Olympic medalist and the “Dance Moms” alum will both appear on “Good Morning America” for their first sit-down interview Friday ahead of the choreographed dance competition show’s premiere on Monday, Sept. 20.
Lee and Siwa, both 18-year-old powerhouses, along with the rest of the remaining “Dancing With the Stars” cast, will be judged by a panel of renowned ballroom experts, including Len Goodman, Carrie Ann Inaba, Bruno Tonioli and Derek Hough. While Season 30’s full contestant lineup will be revealed on Wednesday, Sept. 8., it was announced during ABC’s Television Critics Association panel today that, for a historic first, the series will feature a same-sex couple. Siwa will be paired with a female professional dancer.
“It’s really special that not only now do I get to share with the world that] you get to love who you want to love, but also you get a dance with whom you want to dance,” Siwa said. “There’s a lot of barriers that we’re going to have to break through — who leads, how do you dress, what shoes do you wear? But I think it’s all something that I’m looking forward to. It’s going to be tricky, but it’s going to give so much to people out there — people of the LGBTQ community, people who feel just a little different. It’s going to give them a sense of happiness.”
Siwa added that when she received the email asking her to be a part of the show, the email also asked if she wanted to be partnered with a man or a woman. It was her choice to dance with a woman. “I want to make it OK for the people who come after me,” she said. “I want to make everything OK for the people who come after me.”
During its fall 2020 run, former “Bachelorette” star Kaitlyn Bristowe and her dance partner Artem Chigvintsev won the Mirrorball trophy. Other contestants featured included “Catfish” creator Nev Schulman, “One Day at a Time” star Justina Machado, musician Nelly, Backstreet Boys member AJ McLean, Netflix’s “Cheer” head coach Monica Aldama, Olympic figure skater Johnny Weir, Super Bowl champion Vernon Davis, Disney Channel star Skai Jackson, NBA player Charles Oakley, actress Anne Heche, “The Real” host Jeannie Mai, “Selling Sunset” real estate agent Chrishell Stause and Carole Baskin of Netflix’s “Tiger King.” The show ranked as the No. 1 entertainment series in its two-hour primetime slot among adults ages 18-49 that season and finished among last season’s top five most-watched unscripted series with total viewers.
Tyra Banks will return to emcee “Dancing With the Stars” after replacing Tom Bergeron and Erin Andrews for Season 29. She also executive produces along with Andrew Llinares.
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