EXCLUSIVE: Heather Morris' One 'DWTS' Regret & Why Alan Bersten Is a Tougher Partner Than Maksim Chmerkovskiy
Heather Morris’ Dancing With the Stars journey may be over, but she’s still beaming.
The 30-year-old former Glee star stopped by ET’s studio in Los Angeles on Tuesday, where she opened up about her shocking elimination during week six of the competition, what it was like having two partners this season and, of course, dancing with Beyoncé.
When ET played a clip of the exact moment she and pro partner Maksim Chmerkovskiy were sent home, she revealed this was the first time she had actually seen footage of her elimination.
“I haven’t watched this yet, you guys,” she told ET’s Lauren Zima during our sit-down chat. “You know, I was always wondering, ‘Did I make an awful face?’ I didn’t know what I looked like, if I was super disappointed, I just knew in the moment that I didn’t really know what was happening.”
“It was good to see. People were really supportive of it, [and] I was just as shocked as everybody else,” she continued. “Watching it, I recall the feeling of what it felt like. It was OK, I wasn’t showing too much emotion … so, that’s good! I’m happy about it.”
“It felt like I was watching the show as if I were never on it. I watch a lot of reality television, and for me, I just sat back with my husband and we just kinda watched it like I was being an at-home viewer,” said Morris, who admits she’s a big fan of Keeping Up With the Kardashians, Dance Moms and Naked and Afraid. “I got really into it. It felt like I got to know people I knew off-camera in a different perspective. It was cool. It was fun to watch them and not have to go up there and perform … like, ‘OK, I can relax.'”
As fans of the dance competition know, the blond beauty was paired up with two dancers this season — her original partner, Chmerkovskiy, and troupe dancer Alan Bersten, who filled in when Chmerkovskiy suffered a calf injury while rehearsing for week two.
While most fans are aware of how intense Chmerkovskiy is as a partner, Morris revealed Bersten was actually the tougher one in rehearsals — maybe even more difficult than training with Beyoncé!
“In actuality, Alan was a lot tougher of a choreographer than Maks was,” she revealed. “Maks has been doing it for so long, so he was just like, ‘OK, whatever makes you feel comfortable, if you need to relax, go relax.’ Whereas Alan wanted to make sure it was good and perfect, so he really made sure to rehearse it as much as we could so that it was in my body. So, in the end, I think Alan ended up being a harder teacher.”
“We all know he needs to be [a pro],” she added. “Maks said it and we need to say it again. He’s so professional and just so funny. He is someone we need to see on that stage every week.”
Of working with Beyoncé, she said the pop star was “very professional” and busy, “giving every piece of her life to everything,” but nothing can truly compare to the level of training that is DWTS.
“There’s a lot to it,” she said, also confessing that it’s a lot “harder” to manage the long rehearsals now that she’s older. “[DWTS is] very time consuming, but magical and powerful.”
And although she’s no longer dancing with Chmerkovskiy or Bersten in the ballroom, Morris will be returning to the finale episode, hopefully to dance with Chmerkovskiy once more. She said she’d also be down to join the DWTS: Live! – Hot Summer Nights tour, which kicks off June 16 in Atlantic City, New Jersey.
“I hope so, we talked about it,” she said, when asked if we’ll get to see more dancing from her and Chmerkovskiy. “I would personally love to [do the tour]. I’m not against it, and I would really love to just dance on the stage one more time because we only had two shows where we got to actually dance together, which was really disappointing.”
We also talked to Morris about her favorite memories from DWTS, and she couldn’t help herself from gushing over her Most Memorable Year dance, a Cha Cha routine dedicated to 2015, the year she got married to Hubbell. The two share two kids together, sons Elijah, 3, and Owen, 1.
“Doing the show, it was kind of like a nice reminder that kind of brought us back to that whole first year of us dating, of that special spark we had,” she marveled. “And just the dynamic we had when we started. We brought it up, and now it’s kind of like in us — the last couple weeks we’ve been together, it’s just like every time I see him, it’s kinda of like that special moment. We kind of brought it on the table. That’s really, really nice. I think a lot of couples should do that more often. Celebrate how you felt when you first got together.”
While she says she has “no regrets” from her journey on the show, there is one dance style she wishes she was able to showcase in the ballroom with Chmerkovskiy.
“I wanted to do contemporary very bad,” she revealed. “I thought it would have been fun. It would have been very hard had I gotten in when [contemporary choreographer] Mandy Moore was [judging] on it, I would have died, been awful and she would have critiqued me so bad, [but] that was the only one that I was just like, ‘Aww, man. I missed out, but it’s OK.'”