DWTS Alum Talks Mark Ballas’ ‘Competitive’ First Season

Mark Ballas

Getty Images Mark Ballas' season 5 partner talks about his first season on the show.

On season 5 of “Dancing With the Stars,” fans got to meet Mark Ballas for the first time.

On the March 24 episode of the “Sex, Lies, and Spray Tans” podcast, Bryan shared her first impressions of Ballas.

“What I love, still looking back to this day, he was so excited to be on the show,” Bryan recalled. “Mark came with this, just, energy of, the way he is. He’s so competitive, and if he’s gonna do something? He’s gonna to kill it. Like, he’s going to put everything in it,” she continued.

Ballas and Bryan were eliminated in seventh place that season — and many fans were very surprised that the two didn’t make it to the semi-finals.

Here’s what you need to know:

Mark Ballas Retired From ‘Dancing With the Stars’ After Season 31

After Ballas’ third Mirrorball Trophy win in 2022 (with Charli D’Amelio), he decided it was time to retire from the show. Although he never made a formal announcement on social media, he shared the news with fans at a DWTS tour stop in Los Angeles in March 2023.

“I’ve done 20 seasons now,” said Ballas, according to E! News. “I started this journey when I was 21, 22 and honestly being able to dance and perform for you fans—you guys are the best fans,” he continued.

“My mom is here tonight, my dad is here tonight, my wife is here tonight, my wife’s mom and dad are here tonight. I just want to finish this by saying that this will be the last time you see me dance in this capacity. I’m coming to a close tonight. This is going to be my last dance,” he added.

Ballas returned to the ballroom on season 32 for a tribute dance to late DWTS judge Len Goodman. He also performed alongside D’Amelio on the season 32 finale.

Mark Ballas Never Got to Dance With His ‘Dream’ Partner on the Show

Prior to his retirement, Ballas was asked who his dream partner would be.

“Shakira is always one of my top picks, Jennifer Aniston is one, Ellie Goulding is another. Those are a few picks. Probably will never happen, but in a dream world,” Ballas told E! News in 2015.

“Taylor Swift maybe? Taylor Swift would be a great one. I think I would need some really high shoes for myself, but if Taylor Swift did the show, I think this is the one time the height doesn’t matter,” the then-29-year-old dancer said.

These days, Ballas is focused on other aspects of his life. He and his wife, BC Jean, have collaborated on a couple of things, from making new music to welcoming their first child in November 2023.

“Welcome to Earth my son,” Ballas captioned an Instagram post one month after Banksi Wylde Ballas’ arrival.

In January 2024, Ballas revealed that he’d worked on a new choreography project alongside DWTS pro Daniella Karagach.

“John reached out to me to help with the choreography for his latest project ‘I’m Hip’ which was a return to his animation roots, we had a total blast coming up with the movement for this Jazz cat & the other characters in this short, I also brought in the lovely @daniellakaragach to partner which made the process even more fun,” Ballas captioned an Instagram post at the time.

“We recently found out that ‘Im Hip’ is in the top 15 animated short films to possibly be nominated for an Oscar. Only 5 films of the 15 will make the cut & voting starts tmrw,” he added.

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