Cast members for Season 18 of the hit reality dance competition, Dancing with the Stars, were officially announced this morning and it’s a diverse group of individuals who will hit the ballroom March 17!
This season’s celebrities and their professional pairings were introduced on Good Morning America, and include a couple olympians, a game show host and a teen pop star, just to name a few!
And this time around, the show has introduced a surprising new twist! At one point during the season, a “switch-up” will occur. America will be given the power to vote and change the pairings in the middle of competition.
Given the bond these couples make as they continue week to week, this twist is sure to create new challenges for the contestants that we’ve never seen before!
Below, meet the 12 dancers competing for your vote and the coveted mirror ball trophy!
Sean Avery with pro partner Karina Smirnoff – the former pro hockey player, 33, now serves as the Luxury Advertising Director at Playboy and has modeled for numerous ad campaigns.
Candace Cameron Bure with pro partner Mark Ballas – the actress, 37, most famously known for her role as D.J. Tanner on the hit ’90s sitcom Full House, still has a vibrant TV career and has added New York Times bestselling author to her resume!
Drew Carey with pro partner Cheryl Burke – The comedian and former Whose Line Is It Anyway? star, 55, currently serves as host of the long-running game show The Price is Right.
Meryl Davis with pro partner Maksim Chmerkovskiy – the olympian, 27, just won the gold medal in ice dancing at the 2014 Sochi Olympics alongside fellow DWTS contestant Charlie White. She is currently a student at the University of Michigan.
Nene Leakes with pro partner Tony Dovolani – Leakes, 46, has been a member of The Real Housewives of Atlanta reality series since it began in 2008. She has used her popularity on the show to venture into acting, appearing on series such as Glee and The New Normal.
James Maslow with pro partner Peta Murgatroyd – the actor and musician, 23, stars on the Nickelodeon series Big Time Rush and is a member of the popular boy band of the same name.
Danica McKellar with pro partner Valentin Chmerkovskiy – the actress, 39, is best known for portraying Winnie Cooper on The Wonder Years and Elsie Snuffin on The West Wing. She is also a New York Times Bestselling author and summa cum laude graduate of UCLA.
Diana Nyad with pro partner Henry Byalikov – the swimmer, 64, is the first person to successfully swim from Cuba to Florida.
Amy Purdy with pro partner Derek Hough – after losing both of her legs from Meningitis at the age of 19, Purdy, now 34, is the top ranked adaptive snowboarder in the U.S. and is currently training for the 2014 Paralympic Games.
Cody Simpson with pro partner Witney Carson – the 17-year-old Australian pop star is being labeled the next Justin Bieber and already has quite the fan following with over 6 million Twitter followers.
Charlie White with pro partner Sharna Burgess – the other half of the gold-medal-winning ice dancing team, White, 26, is also an accomplished hockey player and a student at the University of Michigan.
Billy Dee Williams with pro partner Emma Slater – the iconic actor, 76, has appeared in such films as The Empire Strikes Back, The Return of the Jedi, Batman and The Lego Movie.