Nastia Liukin is the latest Olympian who will attempt to go from gold medal to mirror ball trophy when she competes on Season 20 of “Dancing with the Stars,” as announced Tuesday morning.
Liukin is one of 12 celebrities appearing on the latest season, which begins March 16. Joining her on the dance floor is singer Patti LaBelle, singer Redfoo (of the band LMFAO), NFL player Michael Sam and actress Suzanne Somers, among others.
The gymnast who won five medals at the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games, including the all-around gold medal, is partnered with professional dancer Derek Hough. This marks Hough’s 15th season on the show. He holds the record for the most wins, with five.
“Dancing with the Stars” has a strong history of Olympic competitors in its 10 years on TV. Liukin will be the 21st Olympian to appear on the show. Paralympic snowboarder Amy Purdy remains the only Paralympian to appear on the show, finishing runner-up in season 18.
Liukin, 25, will hope to become the fifth Olympian to win the show’s coveted mirror ball trophy, following in the footsteps of fellow Olympic champions Apolo Ohno (Season 4), Kristi Yamaguchi (Season 6), Shawn Johnson (Season 8) and Meryl Davis (Season 18).
She also becomes the third Olympic gymnast to compete on “Dancing with the Stars,” following Johnson, who won four medals competing alongside Liukin in Beijing and went on to win Season 8 and finish second on Season 15’s all-star season, and Aly Raisman, who finished fourth in Season 16 after winning three medals at the London 2012 Games.