Happiness had a chance to talk to "Dancing With the Stars" pro dancer Mark Ballas today. He's coming to town soon as part of "Burn the Floor" at the Progress Energy Center, for a limited engagement starting Nov. 30.
We talked about that show, but we had to ask him some DWTS questions too. It's elimination night, after all. A few excerpts from our chat:
On people who don't believe his partner Bristol Palin should still be in the competition: "I don't care what people say. I like to be positive, and keep an upbeat attitude. It's a dance show, not a political argument. Bristol is a 19-year-old, plucked out of Alaska. She's the only one on the show who is not an entertainer. She's the most normal person. People watch and say 'You know, if I was on the show, that's how it would be for me.' I've had people come up to me and say 'I'm 100 percent Democrat and I vote for Bristol because she's the most relatable.'
Twenty-two million people watch the show and it's not all Tea Party members, it's not all Republicans. Peopel say she's not the best dancer. Emmitt Smith wasn't the best dancer. Marie Osmond wasn't the best. When I hear those comments, I wonder what they're really about."
On getting advice from his dance pro parents: "Yes, I get suggestions from mom and dad. I listen to them over the judges any day. Like last night, I don't know what Carrie Ann was talking about. My mom, especially, is great. She gives it to me straight. I remember once I got three 10s, it was the first time. And I said, 'Mom did you see? and she said, 'Yes, but I've seen you to it better.'"
On tonight's elimination: "I'm nervous every week. I'm more nervous thatn Bristol. She'll say, 'what's wrong with you?' But I think we have nothing to lose. The trophy is ours to steal."
On the possibility of Derek & Jennifer and he and Bristol competiting in the finals: "I don't feel like I'm competiting with [the other professional dancers], but Derek is my foster brother. He's the blond hair version of me. We're carbon copies of each other. We were both trained by my parents and we know each other so well. If the final is between the two of us, we'd be figuring each other out.
Ballas also pointed out that if he or Derek gets first, the winner would be the first three-time winner on "Dancing With the Stars." Right now, he, Derek, Cheryl Burke and Julianne are tied at two wins a piece.