Ginger Zee will get to take advantage of Mark Ballas’ creativity for Dancing with the Stars Switch-Up Week, and Val Chmerkovskiy was probably relieved to learn that his partner will be in very capable hands for the next few days. Val also has to be somewhat excited about his own Switch-Up Week partner; he’ll get to dance with Fuller House star Jodie Sweetin again.
According to Broadway World, Ginger Zee found out that Mark Ballas was her Switch-Up Week partner when he flew to New York to surprise her, live, on Good Morning America. Ginger is the ABC morning show’s chief meteorologist, and, because GMA is on the same network as Dancing with the Stars, Ginger occasionally gets an extra little publicity boost from ABC. She had no idea who her partner was going to be until Mark burst through a white paper screen on the GMA set.
“Yes! Yes! This is so good,” Ginger said before giving her new partner a big hug. “This guy is so creative, so amazing. I can’t wait to work with him.”
According to PureDWTS, Ginger Zee and Mark Ballas will be dancing a Salsa to “La Malanga” by Eddie Palmieri. Mark teased that their routine will be a sexy one with a lot of “booty shaking.”
Ginger joked that she immediately began giving her female celebrity competitors “the stink eye” when she found out that Switch-Up Week was coming up, and she admitted that she’s a bit jealous that her regular partner, Val Chmerkovskiy, will be dancing with Jodie Sweetin next Monday. However, after her disappointing second-to-last finish on Disney Night, Jodie is probably excited and relieved that she’ll be performing with a DWTS pro she has experience working with. As TV Line points out, Jodie and Val danced together in an episode of Fuller House.
Val Chmerkovskiy might help Jodie Sweetin climb up from the bottom of the leaderboard next Monday, but based on last week’s scores, Ginger Zee and Mark Ballas benefited the most from the Switch-Up Week pairings. They and their partners tied for first place with scores of 36 out of 40, so they have to feel pretty good about their chances of finishing at the top of the leaderboard with each other.
For their top-scoring Disney Night performance, Ginger Zee and Val Chmerkovskiy channeled bookworm Belle and her villainous admirer Gaston. They danced a Foxtrot to the song “Belle” from the animated Beauty and the Beast movie, and judge Len Goodman called their performance “the best dance this season.” Zee likely made such a great Belle because she’s a huge fan of the character.
“For 20 years, I’ve wanted to be Belle,” Zee said after the show, according to People. “And tonight, I got to live out a dream.”
Mark Ballas and MMA fighter Paige VanZant tied Ginger and Val’s score by performing a Quickstep to the beloved Toy Story tune “You’ve Got a Friend in Me.” It was a challenging routine, but Paige’s athleticism and past dance experience helped her nail it. As the Inquisitr previously reported, Paige was actually a competitive dancer when she was younger, and her parents owned a dance studio. Sasha Farber is the pro who will get to take advantage of Paige’s talent during Switch-Up Week.
Paige VanZant has proved that she can handle Mark’s complicated choreography, and it looks like the DWTS pro won’t have to get out of his groove by creating a simpler routine for Ginger Zee — the meteorologist also has past experience that is likely helping her learn her dances. In a 2015 Facebook post, Ginger revealed that she was a member of the Valparaiso University dance team.
Luckily for the DWTS celebrity competitors who are newer to dancing, Fox News reports that there will be no elimination next Monday. This gives those who are struggling one more chance to convince viewers that they can improve and deserve to stay on the show.
What do you think of the pairing of Mark Ballas and Ginger Zee for Switch-Up Week?
[Photo by Bryan Bedder/Getty Images for Women’s Health]