Two of America’s favorite dancing siblings are returning to prime time.
Julianne Hough and Derek Hough–that’s brother and sister, not married–are waltzing their way back to ABC’s popular contest show Dancing With the Stars for its twenty-third season, Variety reported. Both siblings are coming off of a hiatus that each took for the twenty-second season; neither appeared for a single episode.
Neither will be given the desk job to make their way back to the top, so to speak either. Both Houghs will be tangoing back into their old positions–Derek, as dancing partner for one (frankly, lucky) celebrity competitor, and Julianne will be returning as judge.
No one knows for certain who will be taking Derek Hough’s hand across the floor yet, however, let alone who will even be in the main cast overall. So far, a handful of names have floated around the atmosphere, and of course, given that the new season will be riding off the slipstream of the Rio Olympics on NBC, some of the contestants will undoubtedly be Olympians.
Unfortunately, one of those gold medalists will not be the gymnast who had been reportedly defying science (and all of her opponents). Simone Biles’s unabashed destruction of the beam, floor, etc, will not be seen in translation onto the dance floor, but it isn’t because the nineteen year-old multi-champion doesn’t want to. Unfortunately, Biles’s gymnastics does not pause with the conclusion of Rio; her busy schedule won’t allow any dance breaks.
Another Olympian’s name who has come up might be facing similar obstructions to being one of the competitors, but unlike Biles, it might not have anything to do with his sport of choice. Ryan Lochte has been a rumored possibility to join the roster of Dancing With the Stars 23, but given that the swimmer was just extradited back to Rio to face charges on his false assault story, his hands might be a little tied.
If one of America’s finest athletes does join up with DWTS this season, it absolutely will not be the first time. Following Sochi in 2014, US Ice Skating gold medalists Meryl Davis and Charlie White both joined the competition–and Davis won it all. In the same year, Hough the male danced with US Paralympian Amy Purdy. Given tradition, however, it’s unlikely that Hough will be Lochte’s partner this season.
The full cast list will be announced Thursday, August 30th on Good Morning America.
Julianne Hough’s return is following a long exhale for the judge. In the year that she took off from DWTS, the country singer has had her hands full. Before all else, Hough starred as the lead woman, Sandy, in NBC’s live production of Grease, a performance for which she received excellent reviews. She’s also worked on parts in various shows, spanning from Nashville to Jane the Virgin.