Romeo may have appeared calm and collected on Monday’s “Dancing with the Stars” Season 12 premiere, but under his cool exterior were “crazy” nerves that he said almost got the best of him.
“I’ve never been that nervous in my life. Right before it started I like, blacked out,” Romeo told Billy Bush and Kit Hoover of his “Dancing” debut on Wednesday’s Access Hollywood Live. “…Not literally blacking out, but when those lights came on it was just like, ‘What’s my first step?’ I forgot my first step! It’s like seeing that hot girl you want to ask out your whole life. You finally see her and you forget what to say.”
Despite his temporary loss of memory, Romeo thoroughly enjoyed performing and hopes his ballroom efforts will inspire his younger generation to take on new challenges.
“It definitely was an experience I really enjoyed,” he told Billy and Kit. “I’m doing this show to show kids, don’t be afraid to fail, you know?
“I’m dancing with a cause this year,” he continued. “I’m going to show kids it’s OK to try something new.”
Kit, anxious to get a glimpse of Romeo’s chiseled abs, suggested dancing shirtless could boost Romeo’s vote count if he finds himself at the bottom of the leader board.
“I know sex sells, but you want me to resort to that?” Romeo laughed, while Kit nodded with an emphatic, “Yes!”
“That what I’m going to do,” Romeo consented. “If I have to, if scores get too low, I might have to take off the shirt one day and make something happen.”
Romeo also revealed he was awestruck by Kirstie Alley’s cha cha cha with pro partner Maksim Chmerkovskiy on Monday evening.
“[Kirstie] was amazing. I didn’t know she was 60 [years old]!” Romeo raved, of his fellow “Dancing” cast member. “Me and her are two of the closest people on ‘Dancing with the Stars.’ That’s like, my best friend and I didn’t know she was 60 years old, so it really amazed me when she went out there and what she did.”
He added, “She has the most confidence in the world — she has an amazing personality and it really shows age doesn’t matter. I don’t care how young you are, how old you are…”
“Is there a crush going on here?” Kit asked.
“Hey, I don’t know,” Romeo smiled. “I actually mention her in my new song, ‘Famous Girl,’ featuring Sean Kingston. It’ll be released next week, and I actually mention Ms. Alley in there.”
As previously reported on AccessHollywood.com, Romeo — along with pro partner Chelsie Hightower — held his own on Monday’s “Dancing” premiere, placing fifth out of 11 couples with a 19 out of 30 first week score from the judges.