KYM EYES LIFE DANCE
After three tough decades perfecting her moves — particularly on Dancing with the Stars — Kym Johnson’s looking for a different kind of pairing. Read marriage, home life and a brace of children
Kym Johnson is ready to start a new phase of her life. The 38year-old has moved back to Australia from the US and has swapped dancing for judging on
Dancing with the Stars.
Now she is hoping to find love.
Johnson’s decision comes after three decades of tough slog in the world of professional dance.
It is a career that demands endless sacrifice to be the best. It impacts your social life and hobbles your romantic life.
Johnson has been in highprofile relationships with cricketer Shane Watson and TV presenter Tom Williams, but remains single.
Now it is time for Johnson to let a younger generation of dancers take to the floor while she concentrates on getting her personal life in order.
“Moving home was a decision I made to think more about my personal life,” Johnson says. “That is what I am focusing on. I have been a workaholic.”
Johnson started dancing at the age of three, training in ballet, tap, and jazz as well as acrobatics and singing.
By 13 she had moved to competitive ballroom. She teamed up with Lithuanian Tomas Atkocevicius and went on to become the Australian Ballroom Champion. She also represented the country in the World 10 dance championships for two years running.
“I had to grow up quickly,” Johnson says. “You do have to give 100 per cent. When I got to my teenage years I was (already) working professionally.
“I was very focused and very serious as a teenager. I think that is a good thing to have: a focus and passion.”
Johnson retired from competitive ballroom in 2001 but went on to tour the world in the hit stage show Burn the
Floor. Johnson joined Dancing
with the Stars in 2004, partnering Home and Away hunk Justin Melvey. The following year she teamed with
Great Outdoors presenter Williams to win the Channel 7 dance show.
Johnson was engaged to Watson at the time but ended the three-year relationship and became involved with Williams.
“I was in a relationship for three years (with Watson) and thought I was going to marry him and have kids; that takes a while to get over,” Johnson wrote in 2012.
“I really want to be a mum.”
The offer to appear on season three of the US version of Dancing with the
Stars couldn’t have come at a better time.
Johnson threw herself into the role, partnering talk show icon Jerry Springer, who she described as being a father figure to her.
In later seasons she partnered N’Sync’s Joey Fatone, billionaire Mark Cuban, magician Penn Jillette, former NFL player Warren Sapp, and actor David Alan Grier.
Johnson became the only dance professional to win
Dancing with the Stars in two countries when she won series nine with Donny Osmond.
In later seasons she partnered Baywatch star David Hasselhoff, athlete Hines Ward, actor David Arquette, Family Matters’ Jaleel White,
and General Hospital star Ingo Rademacher.
“The winning formula is someone who is just willing to throw themselves into it and not feel worried about being stupid on the dance floor,” Johnson says.
“People sometimes think there is a team of people in there helping but there’s not. There’s just the choreographer and the celebrity.
“You really have to think ‘how am I going to get the best out of this person’ because everybody’s different. You have to change your teaching techniques and your choreography (to adapt).
“I had a great experience doing the show first in Australia with Justin, who was a great student. He was the hot sexy one. Then I had Tom, another hot sexy guy. Then I was given Michael Caton, which was a fun challenge.
“That helped me when I got Jerry Springer whose capabilities (were limited) but he made up for it with his charm and the comedy he brought to the routines.
“The Hoff was another example. He wasn’t the best dancer but he was really charming and tried really hard.”
Johnson still has a year left on her contract with the US Dancing with the Stars.
A life partner would be icing on the cake.
“Hopefully that next chapter will fall into place,” Johnson says. “We’ll see. Stay tuned.”