“Dancing With the Stars” pro Cheryl Burke insists she didn’t try to shadow Tyra Banks as she candidly discussed whether “newbies” will “survive” the show.
On the latest episode of her “Burke in the Game” podcast, which featured an interview with Tom Bergeron, the dancer told listeners that missing him as a host doesn’t mean she wants Banks out of the dance competition series.
“I have a lot of respect for her,” said Burke, 38. “I want to be clear that when I say I’d like Tom Bergeron to come back on the show, it doesn’t necessarily mean that Tyra should be fired or that I put Tyra out there. don’t want to have.”
Burke added that the quotes she gave to reporter Allison Kugel in August — about surviving newcomers — were “taken out of context,” explaining: “[When] I was talking about newcomers, it wasn’t just Tyra.”
“I was talking about every new dancer, every new producer, every new person with hair and makeup who decides to join ‘Dancing With the Stars,'” the choreographer continued. “They will likely face challenges along the way. I didn’t mean that Tyra, [specifically]will survive.”
She redoubled her respect for the “America’s Next Top Model” alum as she chatted with Bergeron and gushed about Banks’ “wonderful…growth” after two seasons.
However, Burke told 67-year-old Bergeron that she would still love [him] coming back.”
“I think it would be so great, especially if I’m involved in the show in some way,” Burke said. “It doesn’t mean I want Tyra out. People just have to stop.”
Bergeron, for his part, agreed, clarifying that he “has no problem at all with someone being in front of the camera on that show.”
He added: “If anyone has offered a performance, they have every right to accept it.”
“She plays checkers, not chess,” said the former ‘RHONY’ star…
Bergeron hosted the dance competition series from 2005 to 2019 and revealed in October 2021 that he was saying goodbye to concerns about the show casting “political people.” At the time, it was former White House press secretary Sean Spicer.
“The show I left wasn’t the show I loved,” the comedian explained on an episode of the “Bob Saget’s Here For You” podcast last year. “I was not surprised that this was my last season.”
For her part, Burke returns as a pro for Season 31, which begins September 19 on Disney+. And while she hopes Bergeron will come back to the show in the future, he requested that they wait to walk that bridge until it’s “for them.”