Today’s cuppa: office coffee

Tony_Dovolani_Kate_Gosselin_crop.jpgLast Friday, I spoke with “Dancing With the Stars” pro dancer Tony Dovolani (photo, left). Of course, we talked about his partner, former “Jon & Kate Plus 8” star Kate Gosselin (photo, right). Click here for the story I did on that today for

We talked about other things as well, including my crusade to get “Deadliest Catch” crab-boat Captain Sig Hansen (below) on the show. Hansen is up for the challenge, and recently made his case.

“Oh, my goodness,”
Dovolani said, “that’s really cool. I watch that show, too. I think dancing’s for everyone so it doesn’t really matter what the background is. The more different of a background you come from, the better and more interesting TV it makes.”

He also likes the idea of having peopleSigHansen.jpg on the show that aren’t athletes or performers by profession.

“That’s what I feel about the thing with Kate,” he said. “I feel she’s the everyday mom. So we have an actual ordinary person in our show now, a mom of eight. So it’s pretty cool to see that come to light.”

Of course, the show has had non-performers in the past, from Web moguls Mark Cuban and Steve Wozniak (below) to politician Tom DeLay. What they lacked in skill, they made up for in grit, determination and entertainment.

KarinaWozSamba.jpgAs my Cuppers know, I was part of “The Dream That Was Woz,” and after last night’s performance, I may now be part of “The Dream That Is Buzz,” after being thoroughly charmed by the performance of 80-year-old Apollo astronaut Buzz Aldrin.

Dovolani feels the same way.

“I think the one that’s going to capture everyone’s heart is probably Buzz, the astronaut,”
he said. “This guy is unbelievable. He’s 80, but the way he acts, it’s like he’s in this 20s. He’s got such a great spirit about him.”

Dovolani is also happy to see former “DWTS” champion Brooke Burke back in her new role as the show’s new co-host.Buzz_Aldrin_Ashly_Costa.jpg

“I’m very excited,” he said. “She’s going to be a great addition to our cast. I’m definitely going to miss Samantha (Harris), but I guess our show needed a change. As you can tell, they’ve changed the dances; they changed the co-host; they changed the set.

“So that’s why I give credit to all our producers. Every year, they try to bring something new to it. I guess it’s our 10th season, so we needed a facelift, right? It’s Hollywood, after all.”

When I mentioned to Dovolani that it’s a compliment to him that the show paired him with Gosselin, who not only has no dance experience but also will likely have to endure tabloid scrutiny during her run on the show, he said, “I appreciate that from BBC and ABC, that they trust my experience and my professionalism, that I will be able to deal with this in the best possible way.

“To be honest with you, when I used the words ‘deal with it,’ I use it loosely, because I didn’t have too much to deal with. It’s like an everyday life for me. I come in to teach dance, to help motivate somebody to do this, and to get them as ready as possible to perform on live television.

“Regardless of what they come with, each person has their own hang-ups and insecurities. As a teacher, you’re there to overcome those challenges and bring out the best in them. I don’t think I do anything extraordinary. I just love what I do.”

And before he went on with his day, Dovolani added, “I’ll put in a word for the captain, by the way.”

So, if “The Dream That Is Sig” becomes reality, which of the current (and most recent) crop of female pro dancers do you think should be his partner? Vote!


Posted by:Kate O'Hare