Pro dancer Valentin Chmerkovskiy is going to return for Dancing With the Stars season 20, he confirmed this week.
Val and his partner Janel Parrish got in third place in season 19, but had a good shot at winning the Mirror Ball Trophy.
His return gives the dancer a chance to get into the finals again. His brother Maksim won season 18. Val joined the cast in 2011.
Chmerkovskiy admitted that teaching is hard work, and not the same as dancing.
“You can be an incredible dancer, but it doesn’t mean you will be a great teacher,” he told Mass Live.
Val said key traits include “the ability to acknowledge the strengths of your partner and recognize and camouflage their flaws.”
He also kind of answered a question on many fans’ minds–how much he stays in contact with his former partners, principally Parrish, with whom he was rumored to be romantically involved. He said he maintains friendships of varying levels with his former partners, who have also included talk show host Sherri Shepherd.
Chmerkovskiy and the other pro dancers are set to return for season 20 on February 17, while host Tom Bergeron recently revealed that the season is slated to premiere on Monday, March 16.
Emma Slater, another pro dancer, recently said that the pro dancers don’t find out about their celebrity partners until three days before the official announcement, so they’ll probably find out this time around that first week they return to work.
Season 18 had the cast revealed on March 4, and the season start about two weeks later.