"DANCING WITH THE STARS" KICKS OFF WITH HUGE OPENING PERFORMANCE
FEATURING MUSIC SUPERSTAR JASON DERULO
ON THE HIGHLY-ANTICPATED SEASON PREMIERE, MARCH 17 ON ABC
"Episode 1801" -- "Dancing with the Stars" is back, and for the first time ever the show will premiere with a massive opening number featuring all pro dancers as they perform live with musical guest Jason Derulo. Derulo will sing his mega hit song "Talk Dirty," marking the first time ever a musical guest has accompanied a season's opening number. Each couple will then perform a Cha Cha, Foxtrot or Contemporary routine, vying for America's vote. The two-hour season premiere begins MONDAY, MARCH 17 (8:00-10:01 p.m., ET) on the ABC Television Network
This season, "Macy's Stars of Dance" returns to "Dancing with the Stars" with creative oversight by Emmy(R) Award-winning Choreographer and Pro Dancer, Derek Hough. "Macy's Stars of Dance" showcases some of the best choreography and performers from all different styles of dance, and gives them the opportunity to perform in front of a national audience.
As previously announced on "Good Morning America", the competition will feature a new game-changing twist called "The Switch Up." For the first time ever, America will be given the power to vote and change celebrities and professional dance pairings. This new rule will affect all couples as they will be required to switch partners at one point in the season. Never before have dance partnerships been split up during the course of competition.
The celebrities and their partners for Season 18 of "Dancing with the Stars" are:
Sean Avery & Karina Smirnoff
Candace Cameron Bure & Mark Ballas
Drew Carey & Cheryl Burke
Meryl Davis & Maksim Chmerkovskiy
NeNe Leakes & Tony Dovolani
James Maslow & Peta Murgatroyd
Danica McKellar & Valentin Chmerkovskiy
Diana Nyad & Henry Byalikov
Amy Purdy & Derek Hough
Cody Simpson & Witney Carson
Charlie White & Sharna Burgess
Billy Dee Williams & Emma Slater
Viewers may cast their votes for their favorite teams via phone on Monday nights during and up to 60 minutes after the end of the "Dancing with the Stars" broadcast in each time zone. Online voting at www.ABC.com and on Facebook at https://apps.facebook.com/votedwts/ is open for 24 hours, beginning from the start of each episode on the East Coast at 8:00 p.m., ET/5:00 p.m., PT and closing at 8:00 p.m., ET/5:00 p.m., PT on Tuesday evenings. For the final week, on Monday, May 19, online voting will open for 15 hours, beginning from the start of the episode on the East Coast at 8:00 p.m., ET/5:00 p.m., PT and closing at 11:00 a.m., ET/8:00 a.m., PT the next day. A custom Facebook app lets fans vote, share whom they voted for and say why, as well as see whom friends voted for.
Hosted by Emmy(R) Award-winning host Tom Bergeron ("America's Funniest Home Videos") and Erin Andrews (sports host & "Dancing with the Stars" Season 10 finalist), "Dancing with the Stars" is the hit series in which celebrities perform choreographed dance routines which are judged by renowned ballroom judge Len Goodman and dancer/choreographers Bruno Tonioli and Carrie Ann Inaba.
"Dancing with the Stars" is produced by BBC Worldwide Productions. Conrad Green, Ashley Edens-Shaffer and Joe Sungkur are executive producers. Alex Rudzinski directs. "Dancing with the Stars" is broadcast in 720 Progressive (720P), ABC's selected HDTV format, with 5.1 channel surround sound. This program carries a TV-PG, L parental guideline.
About BBC Worldwide Productions
BBC Worldwide Productions is a key business under BBC Worldwide North America, the U.S. division of the main commercial arm and wholly-owned subsidiary of the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC), BBC Worldwide. Led by Jane Tranter, BBC Worldwide Productions is based in Los Angeles and develops and produces scripted and non-scripted projects for U.S. cable and broadcast networks, as well as digital platforms. The production company is responsible for various titles including the upcoming "Criminal Justice" (HBO) and "Intruders" (BBC AMERICA) as well as "Getting On" (HBO), "Top Gear" (HISTORY), "What Not to Wear" (TLC) and the cultural phenomenon, "Dancing with the Stars" (ABC).