Nyle DiMarco faces a massive challenge every week on Dancing with the Stars when he performs without hearing any music. However, the deaf America’s Next Top Model winner and pro partner Peta Murgatroyd have done an incredible job of overcoming this obstacle. They’ve carefully crafted a method of communicating that works for them, but this week Nyle is going to have to start all over again. Next Monday is Switch-Up Night on Dancing with the Stars, which means that a new pro dancer will have to learn how to lead Nyle through a dance to a song that he can’t hear. However, Nyle doesn’t seem too concerned about getting a new teacher, and he even took some time from his busy schedule to teach Tyler Oakley how to flirt in American Sign Language (ASL).
PureDWTS recently revealed who Nyle DiMarco’s partner will be for Switch-Up Week, and the DWTS pro has experience with creative coaching. Nyle has reportedly been paired with Sharna Burgess, the fan-favorite pro who had to completely change the way she choreographed routines when she was partnered with double amputee Noah Galloway two seasons ago. Sharna proved that she was up for the challenge by helping Noah finish in the final three during Season 20.
You could say that Sharna and Noah were redefining dance with their innovative routines, and “Redefining Dance” just happens to be Nyle DiMarco and Peta Murgatroyd’s DWTS team name. Perhaps fans of the show had Sharna Burgess’ experience with Noah Galloway in mind when they voted for her to be partnered up with Nyle. Fans also voted for which style of dance that Sharna and Nyle will perform together, and they chose the Viennese Waltz.
Nyle and Sharna are both coming off of a high after Disney Night. Nyle fully embraced being Tarzan, and his loincloth costume likely helped him swing a few extra votes his way. He and Peta finished just one point behind Sharna and NFL star Antonio Brown, who had a real breakthrough when they scored three 9s and an 8 for their Aladdin-inspired jazz routine. During an interview with Glamour, Sharna Burgess pointed out that her partner was still scoring 6s last week. Sharna clearly doesn’t give up when the going gets rough, so she’ll probably have no problem overcoming any initial frustration that a language barrier might cause.
During an interview with the International Business Times, Nyle revealed that he’s not nervous about getting a new partner at all, and he thinks that Sharna might actually benefit from working with him.
“Honestly for me, [the switch up] would not be a problem. I only question my switch up partner’s ability to be open and expand her teaching methods,” Nyle said.
“It won’t be easy, but I know I as a deaf person will make her a better teacher and make an impact on her world.”
Sharna Burgess wanted Antonio Brown to get paired up with Nyle DiMarco’s partner for Switch-Up Week, but PureDWTS reports that the Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver won’t get to dance with Peta Murgatroyd. Instead, Karina Smirnoff will teach Antonio how to Cha-Cha. Peta has been paired with another NFL star, Doug Flutie. Doug finished at the bottom of the leaderboard on Disney Night, but he won’t have to worry about getting eliminated next Monday—Fox News reports that no one will be sent home on Switch-Up Night.
Speaking of getting sent home, Nyle DiMarco recently hung out with another popular guy who knows what it’s like to worry about getting eliminated from a reality show, YouTube star Tyler Oakley. Oakley can currently be seen competing on the CBS series, The Amazing Race, and, much like Nyle, he’s quickly become a fan favorite.
According to People, Nyle DiMarco and Tyler Oakley are using their reality show star power to support a good cause: the We Are Able campaign. According to the DoSomething.org website, the campaign’s goal is to “eliminate the stigma that surrounds people with disabilities.”
“Working with Nyle was the most fun I’ve had making a collaboration in years,” Tyler said. “Last January, I began a project to caption all of my videos to be more inclusive with my content, but nothing is as inclusive as representation.”
Oakley gave DiMarco a platform to represent the deaf community by inviting him to film the YouTube video below. Tyler makes it interesting by asking Nyle to show him how to flirt using ASL, and this results in a lot of smiling and giggling.
“I loved how we immediately connected,” Nyle told People. “In the video, it could seem as if we’ve known for years but we’ve only met minutes before! That’s how amazing Tyler is. He sees the good in every person and he’s able to connect to it.”
Nyle called Tyler a “sweet guy,” and he said that he’s a very fast learner. Perhaps he tried to talk his new friend into signing on (no pun intended) for a future season of Dancing with the Stars.
Are you excited that Sharna Burgess is Nyle DiMarco’s Switch-Up partner on Dancing with the Stars? And Do you think he and Tyler Oakley should do more YouTube videos together?
[Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images]