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HOME > Dancing with the Stars > Dancing with the Stars 12

'Dancing with the Stars' twelfth-season partner pairings announced

By Elizabeth Kwiatkowski, 03/02/2011 

Dancing with the Stars' twelfth-season professional partner pairings have been announced by ABC.

For the second time in Dancing with the Stars history, the upcoming season's professional partners will all be returning dancers -- Mark Ballas, Cheryl Burke, Maksim Chmerkovskiy, Tony Dovolani, Chelsie Hightower, Kym Johnson, Lacey Schwimmer, Karina Smirnoff, Anna Trebunskaya, Dmitry Chaplin, and Louis van Amstel.

Noticeably absent from this twelfth-season's cast is three-time Dancing with the Stars champion Derek Hough. Hough previously announced he will miss this season to make his acting debut in Cobu 3-D, an upcoming 3-D movie, but plans to return for next fall's Dancing with the Stars edition.

The 11 celebrity participants -- which ABC announced Monday -- competing on Dancing with the Stars' twelfth season are actress and former Kirstie Alley's Big Life star Kirstie Alley, Loveline radio show host Mike Catherwood, Disney Channel star Chelsea Kane, WWE wrestler Chris Jericho, supermodel and former A Model Life star Petra Nemcova, retired boxer and former The Contender host Sugar Ray Leonard, actor and The Karate Kid star Ralph Macchio, Kendra and former The Girls Next Door star Kendra Wilkinson, daytime talk show host Wendy Williams, rapper Romeo, and NFL football star Hines Ward.

Ballas will be partnered with Kane. He previously won Dancing with the Stars' sixth season with Kristi Yamaguchi, its eighth edition with Shawn Johnson, and is returning for his eighth season.

Burke will compete with Jericho. She previously won Dancing with the Stars' second edition with Drew Lachey, its third season with Emmitt Smith, and is returning for her eleventh season.

Chmerkovskiy, who is participating in his tenth season, will be partnered with Alley.

Dovolani, who is back for his eleventh season, will dance with Williams.

Hightower, a former So You Think You Can Dance contestant who will be participating in her fifth Dancing with the Stars season, will be paired with Romeo.

Johnson, who won Dancing with the Stars' ninth season with Donny Osmond and will be participating in her ninth season, will compete with Ward.

Schwimmer, another former So You Think You Can Dance contestant, will be participating in her fourth Dancing with the Stars season and compete with Catherwood.

Smirnoff, who is back for her ninth season, will be partnered with Macchio.

Trebunskaya, who is participating in her seventh season, will dance with Leonard.

Van Amstel, who is returning for his eighth season, will be paired with Wilkinson.

Chaplin, partnered with Nemcova, will be participating in his third Dancing with the Stars season.

Dancing with the Stars' twelfth season will premiere Monday, March 21 at 8PM ET/PT with a two-hour broadcast.

All 11 celebrities and their professional partners will perform a foxtrot or cha cha routine during the premiere, and the couple with the lowest combination of the judges' scores and home viewer votes will be eliminated the following week on Tuesday, March 29 at 9PM ET/PT during Dancing with the Stars' twelfth season's first one-hour live results show. 

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