“Dancing With The Stars,” judge Derek Hough has decided to take a break from the show after testing positive for coronavirus.
“I have some news to share with you, and I wanted you to hear it directly from me,” Hough stated in his Instagram post. He revealed that the news was a shock, as he tested positive even after being fully vaccinated.
He then admitted that although he still felt strong, he sought the advice of medical experts and is taking them seriously. He stated he quarantined himself and was doing his best to recover fast and get back to what he knows how to do best.
Hough also promised to keep the fans updated on his health. But, how will his absence affect the show?
How Long Will Hough Be Out?
When a spokesperson for DWTS was asked how long Hough would be out of his seat, no definite answer was given. It was scarier since the panelist was present with other judges the night before his announcement.
The previous month, Hough was also involved in a COVID-19 scare. After what host Tyra Banks described as “possible COVID exposure,” he was sidelined for “Britney Night,” during which candidates danced to Britney Spears songs.
Although he was fully vaccinated and tested negative at the time, he was removed for precaution’s sake. That same week, professional dancer Burke and her partner, Rigsby, had positive COVID-19 tests despite being vaccinated.
The couple danced to “Gimme More” from their different houses but could pull the magic off. Their sync and connection were as if they were right next to each other.
Will He Miss The Show Totally?
According to an E! Entertainment report, Hough will be physically absent from the ballroom for the season finale.
The series didn’t state how this would affect his participation in the last show of the 30th season. However, they might take a cue from how the show handled pro-Cheryl Burke and Cody Rigsby’s COVID-19 cases earlier in the season and make Hough judge virtually.
Even if he doesn’t appear, the participants will be judged by the show’s other three judges. The show’s finale is rumored to air on November 22, 2021.
It will include influencer JoJo Siwa and Jenna Johnson, talk presenter Amanda Kloots and Alan Bersten, NBA star Iman Shumpert and Daniella Karagach, and Peloton instructor Cody Rigsby and Cheryl Burke, competing for the Mirrorball trophy.
Some Pairs Felt More Restricted Than Others
Breakthrough cases of COVID-19 are infections in patients who have been fully vaccinated against the virus, such as Hough, Burke, and Rigsby. As a result of the virus scare and breakthrough cases, stricter protocols were implemented on the DWTS show.
A source told PEOPLE about the married couple regulation and that some professional dancers believed they were “more constrained” than their famous counterparts.
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“The pros who are married or dating can’t live together,” raged the insider. The pros felt more constrained than the celebrities because they were not permitted to see their [romantic] partners other than the competition day.
According to the insider, the show argued that they didn’t want to put other teams at risk if one pair contracted the virus. “But then they’re all crowded together without masks in the same ballroom on show days and mix and mingle,” the source continued, noting that the celebs were basically doing whatever they wanted.
Cheryl And Rigsby Reunite, As They Made It To The Finals
Despite the coronavirus setback, the strong duo could do enough to qualify for the season finale. Burke and Rigsby prepared adequately to return to the ballroom after recovering from their breakthrough COVID-19 instances.
After suffering breakthrough cases of COVID-19, the DWTS duo returned in time for Monday’s broadcast as part of “Disney Heroes” night, doing the jive to “Stand Out” from A Goofy Movie.
They performed the Viennese Waltz on Tuesday night to the tune “Gaston” from “Beauty and the Beast.”
Rigsby admitted in an interview that he was still suffering the effects of his COVID-19 infection but was almost “back to normal.” And his partner, Burke, also claimed to have had an out-of-body experience. “For example, my brain and body aren’t interacting as well as they were on Sunday. It was as though I was jiving with a cushion over my face,” the 34-year-old contestant added.
However, they are back and better than ever. With their finalists’ spots sealed, it’s exciting to see their run for the prize as the show’s end gets closer.