Longtime South Florida resident Vanilla Ice has been tapped to compete in the 23rd season of ABC’s Dancing With The Stars, it was revealedTuesday morning on Good Morning America.
The former Miami Beach resident, who burned up the charts in the early 1990s with the rap anthem Ice Ice Baby, rounds out a cast heavy on athletes, with Rio Olympics bad boy Ryan Lochte, gymnast Laurie Hernandez and former Detroit Lions wide receiver Calvin Johnson — and politics, with former Texas governor and presidential candidate Rick Perry.
“It’s going to be tough,” Vanilla Ice said from his current home in Wellington. “I’m approaching it like it’s just a fun event, and I hope it’ll translate on the screen. I’m not feeling competitive, especially going against Olympic champions.”
The rapper, who’s now a home improvement guru on cable’s DIY network, will be paired up with pro Witney Carson.
But at 48, and hours before his first practice, Vanilla Ice says he might be a little rusty when it comes to putting on his dancing shoes.
“I’m still a good break dancer,” the ’90s icon says, “but I’m no fancy dancer. But as Palm Beach’s oldest teenager, I’m sure I’ll be able to wing it.”
Ice, whose real name is Rob Van Winkle, finally agreed to do the show after several attempts by ABC to sign him up.
“To be honest, I’ve never seen a single episode of Dancing With The Stars,” he says. “I’m catching up with it on YouTube. It looks pretty intense.”
He says he’s on his way to New York to film the first episode, which will include his first contact with Carson and first practice.
Van Winkle isn’t the first local celebrity on DWTS. Former Miami Dolphins defensive end Jason Taylor nearly won Season 6, while Indianapolis 500 driver Helio Castroneves won Season 5.