While Dancing with the Stars just ended its eleventh season, a new tradition has begun. Skating with the Stars kicked off its first show on November 22 on ABC. Similar to Dancing with the Stars, this new show features six celebrities, three male and three female, paired with six professional ice skaters. After five weeks of intense competition, a winner will be crowned based on a combination of viewer votes and judges’ scores.
The six celebrities competing on the ice for the show’s first ever season include Disney star Brandon Mychal Smith, Denis Petukhov, Olympic ski champion Jonny Mosley, Rebecca Budig, Rock and Roll star Vince NeilVince Neil and real housewife Bethenny Frankel.
Each week, the couples will be expected to perfect and perform an ice skating routine. Along with the pressure of perfecting their routine, the contestants will also have required elements to incorporate into the routine for each week they are left standing. To be sure that the skating couples complete the task, Tanith Belbin, world skating medal winner, will provide commentary and highlights of each performance.
The judging panel consists of Lauriann Gibson, a well known choreographer, Olympic ice skater Johnny Weir and ice skating commentator Dick Button. The judging system is similar to the system of Dancing with the Stars except each pair will receive two sets of judges’ scores, one for technique and the other for artistic impression. Each set of scores is out of 30 points, meaning each of the skaters have the potential to receive a perfect score of 60 points from the judging panel.
Last Monday marked the show’s third episode. Something new that Dancing with the Stars fans are not used to seeing is the injuries on the ice. During practice earlier in the week, Budig fell and hurt her wrist, which resulted in a trip to the emergency room. However, judges say that her performance was not affected by her injury. Brooke Castile also visited the hospital before last week’s competition because her Olympic skiing partner ran over her finger with his skates. She received stitches and continued to skate. Unfortunately for Smith, he was not as lucky as the other two competitors. He was taken to the hospital due to an undisclosed injury and was not in condition to compete during Monday night’s show. The judges were forced to use footage from their performance the week before and gave the pair a score based on that. At the end of the show, Castile came out on top with 51 points, Buding following close behind with 50 points, Smith in third with a 39 and Neil and Frankel tying for last place with 36 out of 60 points.
With three rounds complete, the competition has just started heating up. Luckily for viewers and skaters, there are still two weeks left. Be sure to tune in Monday nights at 8 P.M. on ABC to find out who will be the first star ever to be crowned skating champion.