After the 28-year-old native Ukrainian indicated he was leaving the ABC reality series following the Fall 2007 fifth-season finale and then subsequently clarifying he was "not quitting the show," Chmerkovskiy's representative has confirmed to People he will not be participating in upcoming sixth edition.
"He just needs a break," an ABC spokesperson told People. "He is part of the Dancing family, and he will be back."
Chmerkovskiy may still appear in some of the professional dancers routines featured in Dancingwith the Stars' sixth-season results shows, according to People, which also added "it's also very likely" he'll be back for the show's seventh installment.
Chmerkovskiy and professional boxer Laila Ali finished third in Dancing with the Stars' fourth-season competition and he suffered a similar fate during the show's fifth season, finishing as the runner-up with Spice Girl Melanie Brown.
"If this is the limit of where I can get in the show, well then let it be," said Chmerkovskiy during a November 28 interview with Extra. "I'm satisfied and moving on."
Several days later he chalked up those comments to being "very stressed out" at the time he made them and said he had no plans of quitting the show.
However Chmerkovskiy has been busy with other endeavors.
He choreographed the Wynn Hotel's La Reve theatrical water show in Las Vegas and is also finishing production on a new Dancing with the Stars fitness DVD with fellow professional Cheryl Burke. In addition, Chmerkovskiy will continue to work with students at his Rising Stars Dance Academy in Saddlebrook, NJ this spring, People reported.
"After coming down from two seasons back-to-back, 10 weeks each season -- 14 weeks, if you count all of the rehearsals -- it puts a lot of pressure on a person and it takes its toll," Chmerkovskiy told People in December.
Dancing with the Stars' sixth-season cast will be revealed during Dance War: Bruno vs. Carrie Ann's live two-hour finale broadcast on Monday, February 18 at 8PM ET/PT on ABC.
Dancing with the Stars 6 will debut with a 90-minute performance episode broadcast on Monday, March 17 in its regular Mondays at 8PM ET/PT time period. ABC will then air Dancing with the Stars' first sixth-season results show broadcast on March 25 in its regular Tuesdays at 9PM ET/PT time slot.
(Photo credit ABC)
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