Val Chmerkovskiy: Working With Celebs on Dancing With The Stars Is Like Doing An “Arranged Marriage” (EXCLUSIVE)
When the next season of “Dancing with the Stars” begins, Val Chmerkovskiy knows exactly what he’ll tell his new celebrity contestant. Chmerkovskiy reveals to Gossip Cop, “I tell all my partners when we first meet, ‘Listen, this is like an arranged marriage. You are my everything for the next three months and vice versa.'”
It’s that dedication that has led the dancer to the show’s finals twice, and he tells us that coming so close to the Mirror Ball trophy but just not close enough can be a hard pill to swallow. “It’s tough because you’re emotionally invested every single time,” shares Chmerkovskiy. “You build a certain relationship every single time.” He continues, “But it’s always very exciting to meet a new person [the next season] and to start a new journey.”
Chmerkovskiy’s personal journey with older brother Maksim began long before the ABC competition, and the bond they share made it all the more sweeter when Maks won the series for the first time earlier this year. “To a lot of fans, it’s like life began with ‘Dancing with the Stars,’ and it hadn’t. There was 25 years before that, of a relationship, of a dynamic that was there way before the show,” he explains. The pro goes on, “To be able to kind of understand his, quote unquote, outbursts, and his passion, and Maks being Maks in some ways, you have to know the history of him, and how he’s been there for everybody, how he’s mentored an entire generation of kids, me included.” “Because of that, he had to sacrifice his own limelight and his own big dreams,” says Chmerkovskiy.
The reality star has experienced quite a bit of success himself (he’s won 15 national dancing titles and two world titles), making Maks’ “Dancing with the Stars” victory an exciting, and long-awaited, role reversal. “I’ve had moments like winning ‘Dancing with the Stars,’ [and] he was always the one on the sidelines cheering me on,” says Chmerkovskiy. “So for me to finally reciprocate that, and be the one on the sidelines cheering him on, that was one of the greatest feelings.”
Together the two are steaming things up on and off the dance floor, such as during their naked dancing video for People in May. Asked about being seen as a sex symbol, Chmerkovskiy calls the attention “flattering,” but notes that “this whole fame thing is pretty funny.” “I really appreciate people taking their time to support me, and to watch me perform my craft, and support me through my journey,” he tells Gossip Cop. “I genuinely am grateful for that. I don’t take that for granted.” Chmerkovskiy adds, “The whole sex symbol thing, that’s a funny bonus. You know what, while I’m young, I’ll enjoy. It won’t be here forever.”