DWTS’ Maksim Chmerkovskiy Joins A New Dance Show


A former “Dancing With the Stars” professional dancer has a new gig — Maksim Chmerkovskiy has joined the Ukrainian “World of Dance” as a judge. Here is what we know so far.

Maksim Said He’s ‘Really Happy to Be Back In Ukraine’ & Honored To Be A ‘World of Dance’ Judge

In an Instagram post, Maksim announced his new project and wrote that he is “really excited” to judge a show that features “all forms of dance.”

Maks wrote:

The newest dance show format on Ukrainian TV is “World Of Dance”! @dancestb @stbua

I’m really happy to be back in Ukraine and be given an honor of a judge in this incredible project! I’m also really excited to get to see the top professional dancers of Ukraine, in all forms of dance!

I truly believe that this project will give dancers an incredible opportunity to showcase their hard-earned skills and will serve as a platform to seriously boost their careers!

New project! New emotions!

On a subsequent video post, Maks wrote, “Some of the best dancers in the country competing for the biggest professional dance trophy! Can’t wait for you all to see this!”

“World of Dance” first premiered in the United States in 2017 and featured fellow “Dancing With the Stars” pro-turned-judge Derek Hough on the judges’ panel alongside Jennifer Lopez and Ne-Yo. The show has since launched four international versions in Poland, the Philippines, Thailand, and Ukraine. Unfortunately, the U.S. version was canceled after four seasons, but hopefully, the Ukrainian version will have a good long run with Maksim; 2022 is its inaugural season.

Maks has been teasing his new project for the past week on Instagram. On January 31, he posted a clip of the southern California sunset and wrote, “Taking it all in before a long trip away. Going to miss this place, but really excited for the next few months.”

Then on February 6, he posted a behind-the-scenes video of himself and his fellow “World of Dance” judges getting ready to tape the show, writing, “New year, new project.”

Maks and his brother Valentin Chmerkovskiy, who is also a “Dancing With the Stars” pro, grew up in Ukraine. In 2017, they told People that their father’s business was burned down in what their family believed was a mafia arson attack and they fled to the United States when Maks was 14 and Val was 8.

“We had challenges,” said Val, “But we never let it chip away at the gratitude we felt for the opportunities we had.”

This Is Not Maksim’s First Time Behind the Judges’ Table

Maksim is no stranger to judging a dancing competition show. Three times after he retired from “Dancing With the Stars” as a pro he returned as a guest judge — in week 10 of season 17, in week five of season 21, and in week five of season 22.

At the time, he told “Good Morning America” (via ABC News) that “for whatever reason, they let me back in the ballroom.”

He added, “Sometimes, I feel like they look at me like I’m an old man in the room, like, OK, you’ve done it so long ago. This is this new ‘Dancing With the Stars.’ But, you know, we’ll see what happens next week when I get to put up a paddle.”

Then in the summer of 2021, Maksim was announced as one of the judges for the Ukrainian version of “Dancing With the Stars.” He also told US Weekly at the time that if “Dancing With the Stars” U.S. ever wanted him back, he would not compete as a pro, but he’d “fill any [other] shoes on that show,” including host.

“I’d love to host. I’d fill any shoes on that show. I wish that I would’ve had that understanding when I first got to the show, we had a different process because I honestly had no examples of anything like this in front of me to be like, ‘Oh, that’s what it’s like,'” said Maksim. “I personally would love an opportunity to step into any shoes on the production side or in front of [the] camera. I don’t really necessarily have the passion of leading someone through this incredibly grueling process of three months of getting to the end. I may not have that, but I do have the passion of contributing to dancing, being on television, and sticking around.”

“Dancing With the Stars” has not yet been renewed for season 31. If it is renewed, it will return in September 2022.

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