Cheryl Burke says ‘DWTS’ contestants should be single

“Dancing With the Stars” alum Cheryl Burke has some explicit advice for newcomers to the dance floor.

“Be single if you do ‘Dancing With the Stars.’ That’s all I’m saying,” the professional dancer, who spent 26 seasons on the show, said on the most recent episode of “Sex, Lies and Spray Tans,” her “DWTS” tell-all podcast.

Burke admitted to having three romantic relationships with partners during her run on the series and attributed the connections to the “insane” rehearsal schedules, which bring dance partners into repeated intimate interactions for up to three months.

“You’re not like, ‘Oh yeah, he’s cute. Like, no, no, I either like you or I don’t, because you’re constantly [together] eight hours a day, seven days a week,” Burke said.

However, not every partnership is love at first sight. Burke described each pairing as an “arranged marriage” in which the pro and the contestant “either love each other or hate each other.”

“It’s so intimate, and you’re stuck with this person,” Burke said. “Like, you better try and make it work at least.”

The partnerships are even messier for those who come to the stage with a ring on their finger. Burke said one former (married) celebrity contestant confessed that he had a crush on his (married) dance partner, and though nothing happened between the two, suspicions of an affair affected their families.

“You get close in so many ways,” she said. “These celebrities are so vulnerable, because in order to succeed you have to strip it all down. And that alone? I bet you most of these married celebrities have never even done that with their wives.”

Burke met her former husband, “Mrs. Doubtfire” actor Matthew Lawrence, when she was dancing with his brother, “Melissa & Joey” actor Joey Lawrence, on the third season of “DWTS.” The couple called it quits in 2022 after three years of marriage, but plenty of pairs — including Kym Johnson and Robert Herjavec of Season 20, Daniel Durant and Britt Stewart of Season 31, and Nikki Bella and Artem Chigvintsev of Season 25, to name a few — have found lasting love under the disco ball.

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