DWTS’ Sharna Burgess Speaks Out on “Hurt” of Being Excluded From Len Goodman Tribute

Former Dancing With the Stars pro Sharna Burgess reflected on not being included in the competition show's tribute to the late head judge Len Goodman.

By Alexandra Bellusci Oct 26, 2023 12:05 AMTags
Watch: Brian Austin Green Slams DWTS Over Sharna Burgess Snub

Sharna Burgess took a beat and is now ready to express what's on her mind.

After Brian Austin Green shared his disappointment in his fiancée not being asked back to Dancing With the Stars for the Oct. 24 tribute to Len Goodman, the dancer is now sharing her side of the story.

"My man has seen me be super upset (again) about the show I love. Last night was hard and he listened to me while I shared my heart," Sharna—who previously expressed "shock" over not being asked to return for season 32—wrote on her Instagram Story Oct. 25. "I haven't made a single comment publicly about the tribute because of a few reasons."

Namely, she wanted to keep the spotlight on the late judge, who died in April 2023 at 78 due to cancer, and the cast's tearjerking performance that honored his legacy.

"Firstly, I know it's not about me, it's about Len and the honor he deserved," she shared. "Secondly, this hurt more than not being asked back and I'm working through it.

Dancing With the Stars Celebrity Weight Loss

"Thirdly," Sharna added, "sharing feelings on here often gets me a few negative people who believe I didn't deserve to be there anyways. So why open myself up to it?"

Reflecting on why the Beverly Hills, 90210 star felt the need to speak out about the tribute—which featured many present and former pros performing the waltz—Sharna said, "My man, that loves me deeply and has listened to me share and cry, had enough and shared his frustration."

"He, like me, just didn't know why," the 38-year-old continued. "I love him for wanting to defend me even though he didn't need to. I would do the same thing. No doubt we fight the hardest for those we love when we tend to just take whatever is thrown at us in our own life."

But regardless of the pain she felt not being asked to dance in honor of the former head judge, Sharna commended her former coworkers, including Jenna Johnson and Val Chmerkovskiy, who choreographed the dance, on a job well done. 

Eric McCandless / Getty Images

"The tribute was stunning. I cried watching," she confessed. "Tears of celebration and joy and gratitude for how much Len did for ballroom and for all of our careers. The performance was perfect and classic and technically brilliant. Val and Jenna created magic and Len absolutely would've loved it."

Leaving followers with one final message, Sharna concluded, "Remember, two things can be true. I can love and support the show, feel joy for those were there and also feel sad about me not being there."

Earlier in the day, Brian took to his Instagram Story to express his frustration towards the ABC show.

"I can't even begin to tell you how disappointed I was for @sharnaburgess to not be invited for the tribute last night," he wrote. "It's disappointing as well that none of her 'family in the ballroom' stuck up for her or spoke out."

The 50-year-old continued, "She's an incredible soul and has always been a friend to everyone. She deserved better. #familystickstogether."

Brian also added that Cheryl Burke—who retired from DWTS last year after 26 seasons—"should have been there as well."

For a look at the Dancing With the Stars season 32 cast, keep reading.

Barry Williams

The Brady Bunch actor will be dancing with Peta Murgatroyd.

Matt Walsh

The Veep alum is paired with Koko Iwasaki.

Mauricio Umansky

The real estate broker—who recently separated from wife Kyle Richards—is partnered with Emma Slater.

Mira Sorvino

The Oscar winner will be dancing with Gleb Savchenko.

Lele Pons

The social media star will be dancing with Brandon Armstrong.

Adrian Peterson

The football player is partnered with Britt Stewart.

Jason Mraz

The Grammy winner is partnered with Daniella Karagach.

Harry Jowsey

The Too Hot to Handle star is paired with Rylee Arnold.

Alyson Hannigan

The How I Met Your Mother alum will be paired with Sasha Farber.

Xochitl Gomez

The Marvel star will be partnered with Val Chmerkovskiy.

Tyson Beckford

The supermodel is paired with Jenna Johnson.

Ariana Madix

The Vanderpump Rules star is partnered with Pasha Pashkov.

Charity Lawson

The Bachelorette star is paired with Artem Chigvintsev.

Jamie Lynn Spears

The Zoey 102 star is partnered with Alan Bersten.

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