New Host, New Bandleader, Same Old "Dancing With The Stars"

It looks like Dancing with the Stars is really out to give us the old razzle dazzle this season, with a new co-host, new band leader and a whole band of promising contestants. Sportscaster and season 10 finalist Erin Andrews debuted as co-host alongside DWTS veteran Tom Bergeron Monday evening. Jason DeRulo (remember him?) kicked off the festivities with a live performance of his new single Talk Dirty accompanied by the twelve professionals, who will be seen swinging the stars along the dance floor this season.

Erin Andrews
Erin Andrews made her debut on Monday - how do you think she did?

Then it came time to introduce the stars themselves. First off – Real Housewife NeNe Leakes danced the Cha Cha alongside partner Tony Dolovani in a solid debut, which earned the pair a score of 21. Big Time Rush star James Maslow and Peta Murgatroyd, friends prior to being paired up, danced the Foxtrot and also earned a 21 from the judges. Child star Danica McKellar and Valentin Chmerkovskiy's Foxtrot performance earned them a solid 24 points, which tied them for third place with with Olympic gold medalist Meryl Davis and Maksim Chmerkovskiy, and Paralympic bronze medalist Amy Purdy and reigning champion Derek Hough.

Former Los Angeles Kings star Sean Avery and U.S. National Champion ballroom dancer Karina Smirnoff gave a somewhat disappointing 20-point performance of a contemporary dance, just below The Price is Right host Drew Carey and Cheryl Burke's 21-point Foxtrot. Teen pop star Cody Simpson predictably aced the cha-cha-cha (well, for a first-timer anyway) with 22 points. And then there were Billy Dee Williams and Emma Slater, shaping up as this year’s comic relief act, who scored the lowest of the night with 15 points. They get a commendation for entertainment value though. Known as the first person to swim from Cuba to Florida, Diana Nyad, and first-time DWTS pro Henry Byalikov, earned 18 points for their Foxtrot.

Sharna Burgess, Charlie White pic
Charlie White and Sharna Burgess' partnership led them to an early lead. 

Full House alum Candace Cameron Bure and partner Mark Ballas got the second highest score of the night with 25 points for their contemporary routine. The winner of the night was Olympic ice-dance gold medalist Charlie White with Sharna Burgess, with an impressive score of 27.


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