Melora Hardin says ballet training couldn’t prepare her for ballroom dancing


When Office star Melora Hardin debuted on Dancing with the stars, she revealed that she practiced ballet. She seemed like a natural on the dance floor, so it would appear that ballet training helped Hardin. Showbiz Cheat Sheet was lucky enough to ask him in a phone interview on September 22. Hardin said she actually had to unlearn some of her ballet training to make Dancing with the stars job.

Melora Hardin and Artem Chigvintsev | Eric McCandless / ABC

“Sometimes that bothers me because sometimes it’s like no, it’s not a lofty ballet position,” Hardin told Showbiz Cheat Sheet. “It’s not about drawing that perfect line, it’s about moving through movement. It’s connecting with your partner and putting your body in a position you’ve never put your body in, and then keeping it in that position. In tango you are in the ballroom position, the holds for this partnership are something completely foreign to my body and absolutely something that required me to be an absolute beginner. There was nothing I could really compare this position to. It was really tricky and sometimes also when you have some sort of training in your body it’s hard to let go of that when it doesn’t serve you. It’s a whole different mental journey.

Hardin described in more detail the ballet lessons she referred to in her first episode of Dancing with the stars.

“I was determined to become a ballerina,” Hardin said. “I thought this was what I was going to do with my life [and] I guess I was really serious about ballet until I was 12 or 13. So yeah, I really thought for a really long time, for those first 12 years, I guess from when I was five until I was 12 or 13, I thought I would be a ballerina. So yes, a lot of lessons and I really enjoyed it.

Dance with pro stars Artem Chigvintsev dives Melora Hardin

Melora Hardin and Artem Chigvintseve | Eric McCandless / ABC

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Hardin isn’t the only former dancer this season of Dancing with the stars. She said that JoJo Siwa shared her difficulties adapting an old dance training, as Siwa was a child dancer on Dance Moms.

“JoJo Siwa, when we were doing Hello america, because she trained in dance, she thinks to herself, “It’s kind of like being a soccer player and asking someone to play professional baseball,” Hardin recalls. “I thought it was a really good thing to say because it’s really similar to how I feel. Yes sure there are things that you bring with you, but in 54 years or being a person on this planet there is a lot that I bring to that, skills that I have learned.

Office the star described how her experiences in the show business help her navigate Dancing with the stars. Dancing is only part of it.

“It’s more than dancing,” Hardin said. “Dancing with the stars, it is also the relationship with your partner. It’s how to navigate this intense schedule and how to still have your life and be a person. And how to be able to play in a high pressure situation live. How to best bring what you have there because everyone has something to contribute.

Melora Hardin receives her score for Dance with the Stars

From left to right: Len Goodman, Carrie Ann Inaba, Bruno Tonioli, Derek Hough, Tyra Banks, Melora Hardin and Artem Chigvintsev | Eric McCandless / ABC

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So, Hardin concludes that she uses some of her ballet training in Dancing with the stars. But, she is also trying to unlearn some of her old ways.

“I would say it’s a bit of both, both helpful and awkward,” Hardin said. “So I would say that there are elements of ballet training that absolutely help in the sense that I can count, I can hear music, I know how to do that and make a line with my body.”

Dancing with the stars airs Mondays at 8 p.m. on ABC.

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