More than 10 years since his sister was crowned Dancing With the Stars champion alongside Grant Denyer, Jeremy Garner will take to the stage on the program this year.
The Shepparton man, who will partner Denise Scott for the upcoming season, said they would be ‘‘Shep-presenting’’ against the other contestants.
‘‘We are getting to know each other quite well; she’s a nut-case. We’ve become really close,’’ Mr Garner said.
Not thwarted by Ms Scott’s arthritis issues, Mr Garner said they had come up with creative ways to move around the stage.
‘‘What she lacks in ability she makes up with in personality,’’ he said.
‘‘She makes me laugh; we’ve come up with fun ways of working around her sore knees and arthritis.’’
The pair shares a connection to the Goulburn Valley.
‘‘She laughed when I said I was from Shepp,’’ Mr Garner said.
‘‘Her mum was born in Tatura ... I think she still might have family and friends there.’’
For Mr Garner, his appearance on DWTS has been a long time coming after he was approached by a producer of the show when it was previously aired on Channel Seven.
When the show was picked up by Warner Brothers and Network Ten, Mr Garner auditioned again and the producers liked what they saw.
This year’s program will be hosted by former DWTS contestant Grant Denyer who took out the prize more than 10 years ago with Mr Garner’s sister Amanda Garner.
‘‘I was approached by one of the producers at a competition — they wanted someone full of life,’’ Ms Garner said.
‘‘It was just the most amazing experience.’’
Ms Garner said it was strange to see her former dance partner now hosting the show her brother would appear on.
The connection was not lost on Denyer either, who recognised Mr Garner at a recent DWTS gathering.
‘‘I did meet up with Grant Denyer a couple of weeks ago and he looked at me and his face lit up — we Facetimed Amanda,’’ Mr Garner said.
The Shepparton community heavily supported Ms Garner through the contest and Mr Garner hoped to see the same sort of support from his hometown.
‘‘Shepparton has always supported us,’’ he said.
While the Garners had an incredible dancing career on cruise ships and in theatre, the siblings now have children and Ms Garner is hoping to inspire the next generation of Shepparton dancers through her studio Excell Dance Studio which she runs alongside partner Sebastian Costa.
‘‘We just really want to get people into dancing,’’ Ms Garner said.
Ms Garner wished her brother all the best for the upcoming contest.
‘‘I think he’ll do a good job,’’ she said.
Mr Garner and Ms Scott will be joined by fellow DWTS contestants drag star Courtney Act, actor Samuel Johnson, cricket star Sir Curtly Ambrose, journalist Cassandra Thorburn, fitness expert Michelle Bridges, actress Olympia Valance, lifesaver and model Jett Kenny, chef and TV presenter Miguel Maestre, social media star Constance Hall and children’s presenter Jimmy Giggle.
Denyer will be joined by Amanda Keller as co-host.
Dancing With the Stars premieres on Monday, February 18, at 7.30pm on the WIN Network.