Dancing With The Stars' Cheryl Burke Emotionally Reveals Positive COVID Test Will Keep Her From Competing In Next Episode

cheryl burke and cody rigsby dressed in all pink on dancing with the stars season 31 premiere
(Image credit: abc press)

Dancing with the Stars returned to ABC as part of the biggest week of the year for Fall TV premieres, with Season 30 making a big splash for having the long-running series' very first same-sex coupling with JoJo Siwa and Jenna Johnson. But ahead of the new season's second episode, DWTS is making different kinds of headlines now that mainstay pro Cheryl Burke has revealed she'll be out for at least the next two performances after testing positive for COVID-19.

While she'd no doubt much rather share behind-the-scenes posts from her practice runs with show partner Cody Rigsby, Cheryl Burke shared a before-and-after video on her Instagram page on Sunday in which she got emotional in revealing the news about her positive diagnosis. In her words:

Okay, guys, so I have really bad news. I am positive, which means I have COVID. And I just got the news now and I've been anticipating, just waiting around since seven o'clock this morning. It's 4:07 p.m. here in L.A. and I've been feeling progressively worse. But yeah, the PCR test came back, and it came back positive, and I just feel so bad. [Begins to cry.] I feel so bad for Cody, I feel like I'm letting him down. I just feel like shit to be quite honest, and it's so overwhelming because it's Sunday, and the show is tomorrow.

Cheryl Burke revealed that she was feeling pretty under the weather, and the part of the video recorded prior to her taking the COVID test made it seem like she was already expecting bad news from it. Unfortunately, those expectations were met in full, and fans will have to wait and see if Burke will make it back to Dancing with the Stars after recovering, which will obviously come down to how well her TV partner Cody Rigsby is with whichever dancing pro steps in to replace Burke.

During the Season 30 premiere, Cheryl Burke and Cody Rigsby didn't completely blow the judges away, but they were far from being the worst performance of the night, as that distinction easily went to Cobra Kai's Martin Kove and resident pro Britt Stewart. Burke and Rigsby earned a score of 24 for their tango, which put them tied with three other couplings in the bottom half.

To be expected, many of Cheryl Burke's fellow Dancing with the Stars pros commented on her post with kind and hopeful messages, from Alan Bersten to Emma Slater to Peta Murgatroyd to the aforementioned Jenna Johnson (who injured her knee during her first performance). Even former DWTS competitor and political lightning rod Sean Spicer shared some heart emojis. You can watch the full video post below.

A photo posted by on

Here's hoping Cheryl Burke gets back to feeling healthy again sooner rather than later, and that she'll feel strong enough to be able to compete again in 2021. In the meantime, Dancing with the Stars airs Monday nights on ABC at 8:00 p.m. ET.

Nick Venable
Assistant Managing Editor

Nick is a Cajun Country native and an Assistant Managing Editor with a focus on TV and features. His humble origin story with CinemaBlend began all the way back in the pre-streaming era, circa 2009, as a freelancing DVD reviewer and TV recapper.  Nick leapfrogged over to the small screen to cover more and more television news and interviews, eventually taking over the section for the current era and covering topics like Yellowstone, The Walking Dead and horror. Born in Louisiana and currently living in Texas — Who Dat Nation over America’s Team all day, all night — Nick spent several years in the hospitality industry, and also worked as a 911 operator. If you ever happened to hear his music or read his comics/short stories, you have his sympathy.