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Posted at 09:12 AM ET, 08/31/2011

‘Dancing With the Stars’ announces pairs for the season

The new “DWTS” cast. (Adam Taylor - ABC)
After the Israeli version of “Dancing With the Stars” featured a same-sex dance couple last fall, speculation ramped up about whether ABC would do the same for this season of “DWTS” — and continued after Monday night, when fashion expert Carson Kressley (the openly gay star of Bravo’s “Queer Eye for the Straight Guy”) joined the competition.

But the rumors were quashed on Wednesday morning, as the pairs were revealed on “Good Morning America,” including Kressley and his dancing pro, Anna Trebunskaya.

Kressley, the only cast member not in the Los Angeles studio for Monday night’s cast reveal, joined the “GMA” co-hosts in New York for a quick interview with Trebunskaya. He revealed that he may play mental games with contestants by asking “you’re gonna wear that?” right before they go on the air.

Yesterday, GLAAD released a statement praising the casting of Kressley, as well as Chaz Bono:

“With both gay and transgender contestants represented on this upcoming season, ABC will send viewers a strong message about the diversity within the LGBT community. At a time when transgender representation in the media is sorely lacking, Chaz Bono joining the cast is a tremendous step forward for the public to recognize that transgender people are another wonderful part of the fabric of American culture.”

Here’s the official list of “DWTS” pairs for the season, which begins Sept. 19:

David Arquette and Kym Johnson

Ron Artest and Peta Murgatroyd

Chaz Bono and Lacey Schwimmer

Elisabetta Canalis and Val Chmerkovskiy

Kristen Cavallari and Mark Ballas

Nancy Grace and Tristan McManus

Robert Kardashian and Cheryl Burke

Carson Kressley and Anna Trebunskaya

Ricki Lake and Derek Hough

J.R. Martinez and Karina Smirnoff

Chynna Phillips and Tony Dovolani

Hope Solo and Maksim Chmerkovskiy


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By  |  09:12 AM ET, 08/31/2011

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