Meet Gleb Savchenko – new “Dancing With The Stars” pro, Lisa Vanderpump (“Real Housewives of Beverly Hills”)’s partner, and yes resident DWTS Man Candy. Ladies don’t be fooled though. Gleb’s got an illustrious career in addition to his steamy and ruggedly good looks. Gleb won his first major dance title at the age of 11. He became a professional Latin and Ballroom dancer at 24, going on to win a slew of championship titles (i.e. Australian South Pacific Championship, Canberra Open Professional Championship and the United Kingdom Championship). Savchenko also modeled for high profile names such as Calvin Klein, GQ Fashion, Hugo Boss, and Cosmopolitan. Not only does Gleb hold exceptional modeling and dancing credits to his name, he received his Master’s Degree from GITIS’s Russian Theatre Arts University. He also studied drama at the Moscow Theatre Arts University. It’s apparent that Gleb’s a multi-talented and multi-faceted gentleman. So, if Gleb wasn’t a dancer what would he be doing? Are there any tricks up his sleeve for the season? What’s it like to work with Lisa? Savchenko dishes the details in our interview.
What was your first reaction to the news of becoming a “Dancing With the Stars” pro?
My first reaction was oh my goodness, this is absolutely awesome and a real dream come true for me! I love being a part of this show, it is such an honor!
You’ve represented places like Latvia and Hong Kong. Is there any particular country that is near and dear to your heart as a dancer?
I have lived in many places around the world. Russia, Sydney, New York, Hong Kong and now Los Angeles. When I was 20, I moved from Russia to New York and it was some of the best times of my life! I moved to New York, all by myself and it was one of the best times of my life. I developed some deep and lifelong friendships. I also love Sydney, Australia – it is such a beautiful country. It’s funny, because I have lived in so many places in the world and I have had such great experiences in all places I have lived. When I am in LA, sometimes, I miss Sydney. When I am in Sydney, I miss Russia. When I am in Russia – I miss Hong Kong and so on. I get attached to places because of the memories that are created there. I do love my hometown Moscow, where I was born – I grew up there, I know every single corner, every coffee shop, every bar, – the familiarity of Moscow is very comfortable to me.
The audience saw that you had chemistry with your partner, Lisa, from the moment you two met. What’s the working relationship been like with her?
Working with Lisa is great. We have a very good relationship. There is great chemistry between us and when two people start dancing with each other, a friendship develops fast. I think Lisa and myself will be friends for life. Trust between us has been developed. When you are on the dance floor, you have to trust each other; you have to believe in each other. I believe in Lisa. I believe she can go far in this competition. We have a great friendship.
You’ve been a seasoned champion in both Latin and Ballroom dancing. What’s your favorite Latin dance and what’s your favorite ballroom style?
I do love all Latin dances. My favorite dance is usually the one I am working / choreographing at the moment. I like the elegant classy dances.
Can the audience expect something surprising from you and Lisa?
The audience probably wont expect us to do anything too shocking. I always try to push Lisa to the limit, and push her past her comfort zone. The audience should expect anything – we can do ANYTHING!
You’ve done a variety of things ranging from modeling, acting, and singing in addition to your career as a dancer. If you weren’t a dancer what would your ultimate dream job be?
I think if I wasn’t dancing, I would like to be a military pilot. I still have the thought of getting my pilot license at some stage. That would be awesome.
How has the rest of the professional dancers from “DWTS” welcomed you?
All of the dancers have been so great and so welcoming. I find this new family, so warm and supportive. I have made a lot of great new friends and have cemented some of the friendships I had before with some of the dancers I knew before I was on the show. Everyone has been so kind and supportive, they don’t hesitate to help. Not only have the dancers been supportive, but the crew and the celebrities have really been wonderful towards me, I love the DWTS family.
Is there any dance you’re looking forward to performing with Lisa?
I am looking forward to the dances, where Lisa can open up a little bit more – to show her personality a little bit more and I think her strengths is going to be the soft elegant dances. I cant wait to keep dancing – Viennese Waltz, Rumba,etc.
In your six word memoir, describe your life as a dancer.
Happy, Traveller, Exhausting, Passionate, Creative, Fit.
Thanks for the interview, Gleb! It was great to learn about you, and we look forward to more dances from you on the show.
To vote for Gleb and Lisa (at the appropriate time):
AT&T Users can text “Vote” to 3404
And viewers can always vote online at ABC.com and the “DWTS” Facebook Page.
Follow Gleb on Twitter! @Gleb_Savchenko