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TikTok Star Charli D’Amelio and Partner Win ‘DWTS’ Season 31 After Receiving Perfect Scores

She and Mark Ballas have consistently claimed the top score throughout their nine weeks working together.
Charli D'Amelio attends Michael Rubin's MLBPA x Fanatics party.

Charli D'Amelio attends Michael Rubin's MLBPA x Fanatics party.

TikTok Star Charli D’Amelio and her partner Mark Ballas just swept season 31 of Dancing With The Stars and are the newest Mirror Ball recipients, as the season finale aired on Disney+ on Monday, Nov. 21.

The duo won the judges and the crowd over with their final dance number, a freestyle to Pinar Toprak’s “Us Again.” The pair earned a perfect score for the intricate choreography, and it was not their first 40 of the night. The 18-year-old also danced to “Grown” by Little Mix for her redemption routine—a revamp of a previous night’s performance chosen by judges. 

“I really just gave everything I had to this journey and I got so much out of it, whether it’s confidence in my dancing, new friends, you know, memories that I’ll remember forever,” D’Amelio told Good Morning America.

Ballas, a professional ballroom dancer, returned to the reality competition’s stage this season after a five year hiatus. After nine weeks of practicing and performing together, and consistently receiving top scores, Ballas and D’Amelio have formed a close friendship. This is Ballas’s third DWTS win and he has yet to confirm whether he will return next season.

“Every week… I tried to put every aspect of creativity, care, musicality, nuance into each one,” the Kinky Boots alum said. “I think you can only do that by staying totally in the moment of each time. So, right now I’m in this moment with Charli and my body couldn’t even fathom a thought of doing this [in] six months, so I’ll let you know down the line.”

D’Amelio—whose mom Heidi was also a contestant this season—rose to fame at the start of the pandemic by dancing on TikTok. Her account is the second most-followed on the platform, with more 148 million fans. The D’Amelio family, including older sister Dixie and dad Marc, has its own Hulu show that documents their rise to fame and move from Connecticut to Los Angeles.

This season’s finale was big one for a couple of people saying farewell to the show. SI Swimsuit model and DWTS veteran (and two-time champion) Cheryl Burke announced her retirement over the weekend after 25 seasons with the show.

“This is my family,” Burke said in her goodbye speech at the end of the night. “Every single person that was part of this cast, behind the scenes, prior to today. Every single person, thank you for believing in me and thank you for helping me find my voice. You guys have been a part of my identity and I thank each and every one of you. Pro dancers, celebrities, thank you for pushing me to be the greatest artist that I can be. I love you all.”

Longtime judge Len Goodman also said on Monday night that it was the “right time” to step away from the show after he announced his plans leave earlier in the week. He was honored with a montage of notable moments and kind words.

“All good things have to come to an end,” Goodman, who has been with the show since season one aired in 2005, said. “For me, it was such a privilege to be a part of Dancing With the Stars. I cannot thank you enough.”

The 78-year-old, who received a standing ovation, attributes his departure to wanting to spend more time with his grandchildren.

“You’ve inspired generations of dancers around the entire globe through your passion, through your expertise and through your laser-focused eye,” Tyra Banks said of the “living legend” who has judged more than 3,000 routines. “And they are going to carry on that commitment to excellence forever.”

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