Mark Ballas Was in a Metal Band With Which ‘Dancing With The Stars’ Pro?

February 14th, 2016

Long before quick-stepping toward two mirrorball trophies on ABC'sDancing With the Stars, Mark Ballas was performing in a head-banging metal band . . . with fellow pro Derek Hough!

"It was awesome," Ballas, 29, tells Us Weekly while playing the Name Game at our New York office. "We had long hair and we used to go to battle of the bands.”

The pals have a long history together. At age 13, Hough and sisterJulianne, then 10, left their home in Utah and moved to England to live with Ballas and his parents, Shirley and Corky, while studying ballroom dance at London’s Italia Conti Academy of Theatre Arts. 

"Derek is my best friend and brother for life," Ballas, who is engaged to singer BC Jean, tells Us of the pro dancer, who has won a record six seasons of DWTS. "We grew up together. We trained together, [went to] high school, college together. Moved out to America together. Joined the show together.

In 2014, they even bought a bachelor pad together! Hough, 30, and Ballas renovated the Studio City, California, ranch of the HGTV seriesMark and Derek's Excellent Flip.

Watch the video above for more secrets and behind-the-scenes details about Ballas' Dancing With the Stars cast mates (think: Kim Kardashian, Bristol Palin and Sadie Robertson)! Season 22 ofDancing With the Stars premieres March 21. 

Mark Ballas and BC Jean perform on Access Hollywood

February 3rd, 2016

Alexander Jean, better known as Mark Ballas and BC Jean, performed their single Roses and Violets on Access Hollywood.

‘Dancing With The Stars’ Pro Mark Ballas Talks Season 22, Reveals His Feelings On Judge Len Goodman’s Return

December 23rd, 2015

"Dancing With the Stars" pro Mark Ballas, pictured with his Season 21 partner Alexa PenaVega, revealed his thoughts on Season 22 of the hit ABC series.PHOTO: ABC

“Dancing With the Stars” will return for another hip-shaking installment in 2016. But for those of you who can’t wait until the hit ABC series airs its Season 22 premiere in March, we have a holiday treat for  you! Two-time Mirror Ball champion Mark Ballas is giving fans of the long-time dance competition an early Christmas gift: scoop.

The two-stepping pro revealed to International Business Times his thoughts on good, ol’ grumpy Len Goodman’s reprisal (the fan favorite judge took a break during Season 21 due topersonal reasons) as well as what he thought about his shocking Season 21 elimination.

International Business Times: First off, congratulations on another amazing season of “Dancing With the Stars.” I have to say I was extremely surprised when you and [your partner] Alexa [PenaVega] were eliminated from Season 21 of the competition.

Mark Ballas: So was I.

IBT: The two of you had some of the most innovative dances of the season.

Ballas: Thank you! Which ones were your favorites?

IBT: It was when Alexa shared her story about her struggle with bulimia through dance. That was chilling.

Ballas: Oh, yeah. Thank you. “Make It Rain.”

IBT: What was the most exciting moment for you while competing on Season 21 of “DWTS”?

Ballas: I had a couple. I had a lot of cool moments. I would definitely say turning into Edward Scissorhands was one of them. And then, also, when we did the “Breaking Bad” dance with the bald cap. It was just cool to watch special effects work prosthetic skin on my head. It took like two or three hours. It was incredible.

IBT: I’ve always been curious about the preparation behind “DWTS.” What goes into it?

Ballas: It’s very much a full week process. We begin choreography on Tuesday, we’re shooting out rough-camera packages on Friday, fine-tuning Saturday, we’re practicing on the stage Sunday and then Monday is usually the time for the band. Then we see the final set, costume and wardrobe. So, it comes together Sunday or, the latest, Monday morning.

IBT : I don’t think audiences understand how much time and effort goes into the show.

Ballas: Oh, yeah. It’s a full time thing.

IBT : It must be exhausting. I don’t know how you’re not sick from being rundown!

Ballas: Right? (Laughs) Lots of vitamin C!

IBT: For me, one of the most memorable moments from Season 21 was when Len Goodman announced he’d be returning to the judges’ table for Season 22. Did you know prior to the finale that he’d be returning?

Ballas: We didn’t, we didn’t. I mean, I think it’s good. Len brings something to the show that I felt was a little bit absent this season – his grumpiness and his attention to tradition and you know, we need that. He’s such a staple of the show, he was definitely missed.

IBT: How do you think his return will affect Season 22?

Ballas: Idon’t think it will affect anything drastically. I think it will be great to have him back. It’ll be nice to see him at the judges’ table – I never thought I’d ever say that (laughs).

IBT: You broke out your guitar during the Season 21 finale so I’m hoping we’ll get to see you perform in the upcoming season! Perhaps with Val [Chmerkovskiy] on violin and Julianne [Hough] on vocals?

Ballas : I can’t speak for everybody else but I went to music college in England. I’ve been classically trained. [Music] is a big part of my life.

Fingers crossed Ballas will serenade audiences once again during Season 22 – that is, if he competes. During a previous interview with IBT, Ballas revealed that his participation in the upcoming installment of “DWTS” will remain unknown until the pros are unveiled.

“[ABC will] probably announce [the pros] end of February or early March,” he stated.

“Dancing With the Stars” will air its two-hour Season 22 premiere on Monday, March 21, at 8 p.m. EST on ABC.

Original post:

Smoking: How Not To Fall Into It During Holiday Parties

December 16th, 2015

By Dory Larrabee-Zayas for Hollywood Life

The holidays are here, and with them can come the temptation to overindulge and pick back up bad habits like smoking. ‘DWTS” Mark Ballas told us exclusively how he stays on track and how you can, too!

The pros on Dancing With The Stars have the lean and toned bodies we all want, but even they can hit bumps in the road when it comes to staying healthy. When Mark Ballas, 29, stopped by the Hollywood Life offices, we quizzed him on how we can stay healthy during the holidays and how he quit smoking for good. Keep reading for his fitness tips.

“I’ve been [smoke-free] for two years now, and I feel much better for it,” Mark told us. “It’s really helped my health in general and cardio [for dancing]. When you stop, it really does make a difference, so I’m always trying to be a good voice and help people out with the “What’s Your Why?” campaign. We’re doing this new thing with the holiday season, the Gift To Quit, which is really cool. It’s kind of saying it’s the gift that keeps on giving because you’re giving yourself better health, a better life, and that keeps going.”

Stay Healthy During The Holidays — Mark Ballas Talks Staying Disciplined

When it comes to other indulgences during the holidays, Mark is a bit more lenient: “Here’s the thing with me, when I’m training, I’m on it. But at the holidays, I like to enjoy a little pudding,” he said. “But I don’t overdo it; everything in small portions. If you’re trying to eat clean, stay disciplined, stay focused, but also, enjoy your life. Don’t do it to the point where you hate dieting because you don’t treat yourself ever. I feel like the holidays, especially during Thanksgiving, you have to enjoy those things. Then when the holidays are over, get disciplined.”

And if you were hoping for a bit of inside DWTS scoop, Mark revealed his favorite routines with partner Alexa Vega: “I loved the Breaking Bad routine and Edward Scissorhands. I loved the last one we did, the contemporary, to “Make It Rain,” when we did the piece about [Alexa’s] bulimia [disorder]. It’s such a great show, and I’ve been a part of it so long now. To see how it’s advanced, not only in its production, but in its story telling as well. You really get to know these people, you get to find out things about them that I don’t think you would ever find out. Like the way Alexa told her story was beautiful. It’s a really positive, nice thing.”

Mark Ballas and BC Jean release Acoustic Roses and Violets video!

November 25th, 2015

Since being featured on Dancing With the Stars several weeks ago, Alexander Jean's Roses and Violets has been moving up the music charts in the US and Australia.  The duo of Mark Ballas and BC Jean performed the song live last night on the finale of the show and today released an acoustic version of the up and coming single!

The song is available on ITunes.

Dancing With the Stars Season 21 crowns a new winner

November 24th, 2015

The two hour finale of Dancing With the Stars was a celebration of the amazing dances and journeys during season 21.  The three finalists were Alek Skarlatos, Nick Carter and Bindi Irwin.  Before they danced for one more final set of scores a lot of dancing took place.  Mark Ballas had the opportunity to show off his dancing, choreography, and musical talent in three different numbers during the show.

First up was the opening number featuring the entire cast .

Dancing With The Stars Season 21 Finale Opening... by Codebear2

The finalists chose a favorite routine to repeat.  Bindi Irwin and Derek Hough selected their Viennese Waltz to Alexander Jean's Roses and Violets.  Mark Ballas and BC Jean performed the song live while Bindi and Derek performed the emotional dance.

Bindi Irwin & Derek Hough - Viennese Waltz by Codebear2

Team Baega hit the floor one final time with their favorite routine-the jazz routine to the theme from Breaking Bad.

Alexa PenaVega & Mark Ballas - Jazz - Finale by Codebear2

After performing dance fusion routines for a final set of scores, it was announced that Bindi Irwin was the new champion of Dancing With the Stars.