Dancing with the Stars has featured a lot of professional dancers over the years, with many of the same performers acting as pros who partner up with celebrities to help them compete and try to win that coveted mirrorball trophy. Season 29, however, will feature a new pro who's been in the troupe on DWTS since Season 23, and has now become the show's first black woman to be featured on the competition with a celebrity partner. When DWTS returns in September, Britt Stewart will step up to the pro plate, and we now know how she feels about her new role.
As mentioned, Britt Stewart is no complete stranger to the Dancing with the Stars stage, having been on the show since 2016, but she wasn't able to make the leap from troupe to pro until now. With her historic casting, you can believe that Stewart is feeling mighty fine right now, as she told Entertainment Tonight:
I'm just so grateful, so excited and over the moon, honestly. Ever since I found out, I just don't really know what to do with myself. So much excitement, so much emotion. When it set in, emotion really took over. I started crying and then immediately when I got off the Zoom call [with producers] I called my mom and I was just like, 'Ahh!' and just all the tears were flowing.
I bet! Britt Stewart has worked her fancy feet off for DWTS over the years, with her talents also being used for two national DWTS tours. But, she admitted in her interview that she had really wanted to move up with the show, and get the chance to showcase what she can do by getting that sweet pro spotlight, and having fans watch just her and a partner on a weekly basis.
Even though the troupe was cut in Season 28, and Britt Stewart wasn't able to dance on the hit, fans had taken notice of the dancer long ago, and wanted to encourage DWTS to promote her, as well as opt for some increased diversity in its pros, seeing as how Britt has always been the only black female professional dancer on the series. So, in June, two fans started a petition to have her added back to the show after being cut along with the rest of the troupe, and to have her come back as a pro.
Now, everyone who agreed with what those fans were trying to accomplish has gotten their wish, and Stewart is "so excited and over the moon" that she posted her big news on Instagram as soon as she could:
Dancing with the Stars has seen black male pros in previously, with Brandon Armstrong and Keo Motsepe both returning as pros for the upcoming season, but, for some reason, black female dancers haven't been afforded the same opportunities until now. And, Stewart knows how big of a deal her promotion is, especially at a time when the show is going through so many changes in front of the camera and behind the scenes:
To be the first Black female pro is such an honor, and I definitely don't take it lightly. Having this opportunity and position is just so beautiful. I'm so happy to take it on and also be a part of a show that celebrates diversity.
Luckily, we'll get to watch Britt Stewart continue to strut her stuff on Dancing with the Stars when the show returns to ABC this fall, Monday, September 14 at 8 p.m. EST.