From PEOPLE Magazine Click to enlarge
Paired with six celebrities, the ballroom pros of ABC's surprise reality hit Dancing with the Stars are learning to steady nerves and make sure their partners' feet aren't both lefties. Teaching actress Rachel Hunter to do a fall for the rhumba, "I put a jar of red licorice, which she loves, on the top of a couch," says Jonathan Roberts, 31, a U.S. Pro-Am 10 Dance Champion, "and she had to reach out to them while I held her leg." The show, which attracted 13.5 million viewers for its debut, eliminates one couple a week as they fox-trot, tango, the works. The stars are game—how else to describe boxer Evander Holyfield doing the cha-cha?—and the dancers are whirling peacocks. (Dutch dancer Louis van Amstel, Bachelorette Trista Sutter's teacher, describes himself as "flexible, diverse and above all very unique.") But they can also be starstruck. While practicing with ex-New Kid on the Block Joey McIntyre, says Ashly DelGrosso, 22; "I said, 'Just as a favor, can you show me that move you did in "The Right Stuff"—that side-shuffle step?' He starts doing it, and I started to blush!"