Professional dancer Derek Hough is a good luck charm for celebrity contestants on “Dancing With the Stars.” Since joining the show in season five, he has won the competition a record five times, including the last two seasons in a row.
In last fall’s season 17, he triumphed with “Glee” star Amber Riley while he and country singer Kellie Pickler waltzed off with the mirror ball in season 16 last spring. Prior to that, he had prevailed with TV personality Brooke Burke (season seven), Pussycat Dolls singer Nicole Scherzinger (season 10) and actress Jennifer Grey (season 11).
Two other pros have won twice in a row – Cheryl Burke in seasons two and three, and Hough’s sister Julianne in seasons four and five – but none have taken three consecutive titles. Will Hough make history this year?
The beneficiary of the Hough bump this season is anyone’s guess. Though he is currently partnered with Paralympic snowboarder Amy Purdy, that’s going to change in two weeks when, for the first time in the show’s history, viewers will vote to pair the celebrity contestants with different pro dancers.
Might Hough might be unstoppable, for instance, if paired with ice dancer Meryl Davis? The two are already well acquainted; he choreographed one of her and Charlie White‘s gold-medal winning programs for the recent Sochi Olympics.
Hough has also been a good-luck charm for the show itself; last fall, he won “DWTS” its very first Emmy for Best Choreography.