We're so excited that Dancing With the Stars returns on Monday, April 30, but some fans of the hit reality competition were surprised to learn that the all-athletes Season 26 will only air for four weeks as opposed to the show's usual 12 week run. So, in an exclusive new interview with Closer Weekly, pro dancer Keo Motsepe explained why DWTS' latest season is a bit shorter — and the answer is actually totally simple!
"I think the athletes we wanted to have, they can only do so much. I think the show is also trying to see if the athletes season is going to work. They didn't want to do a whole season and have people be like, 'Only athletes. Are they gonna be good?' You never know. I think it's gonna do amazing. It's trying something different and new," the 28-year-old told us.
Keo and his Season 26 partner, Jennie.
But don't worry Dancing With the Stars fans, Keo assured that the abbreviated season is still going to be super fun and will even "look like the finale on Week 1." He continued, "I think it's an amazing season, to have all athletes. I think for all the pros and I, the pressure is on because there are no actors or anything — it's all athletes. I think the competition is going to be so high and expectations from the viewers will be so high. In normal seasons, when you have 12 weeks of shows, you can help them grow and build them up." We can't wait to watch it all unfold!
Keo will dance with softball player Jennie Finch Daigle this time around, and he shared that the competition is already intense in the ballroom. "I think me and Jennie are going to be our own competition. During the season, I always say who I think will be — but this time, since it's all athletes, I think everyone is going to be their own competition."
Dancing With the Stars premieres on Monday, April 30, at 8 p.m. EST on ABC. For more exclusive content, sign up for our Closer Weekly newsletter!