Some Tips for the Newly Announced Cast of Dancing With the Stars

February 27, 2012

The cast of the 14th Season of Dancing With the Stars was announced this morning. We have a little bit of advice for the newbies!

They are:

Jack Wagner
, partner: Anna Trebunskaya

Melissa Gilbert
, partner: Maksim Chmerkovskiy

Donald Driver
, partner: Peta Murgatroyd

William Levy
, partner: Cheryl Burke

Sherri Shepherd
, partner: Valentin Chmerkovskiy

Katherine Jenkins
, partner: Mark Ballas

Gavin DeGraw
, partner: Karina Smirnoff

Martina Navratilova
, partner: Tony Dovolani

Roshon Fegan
, partner: Chelsie Hightower

Maria Menounos
, partner: Derek Hough

Jaleel White
, partner: Kym Johnson

Gladys Knight
, partner: Tristan MacManus

Here are five qualities one must possess to win Dancing with the Stars:

1. Likeability. It’s okay to be confident, but the “Star” must defer to the judges and coach. Be pleasant. It won’t totally win it for you, but without it you’re dead in the water.

2. Growth. The audience loves to watch someone improve. It also loves an underdog. You have to master the line between the two.

3. Humility. This almost always presents itself in someone crying in the studio about how darn hard it is to dance. We love real emotions! Just be careful to not look like a complainer. And please do not fight with your coach—even if you’re frustrated. Listen to the judges, they’re rarely wrong.

4. Musicality. The general public might not know if your knee is a little bent. They will know if you’re totally off the music. Feel the music and we’ll feel it with you.

5. Ease. The number one mistake “Stars” make is stiffness. If you’re focusing on not messing up, you won’t inhabit your “character.” Everyone knows you’re not a dancer. You’re an actor, singer, athlete, talk show host, etc. If you want to move us by your movement, don’t let us see you thinking about your technique. You’re not going to miraculously become an amazing technician. Just get out there and love the movement.

(For more on the current cast visit