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“I Got Partner-Dumped!”: Colette and Pooja’s Dancing Queens Feud, Explained
Faced with losing to bitter rivals, one performer on Dancing Queens said she'd rather have her "dress just fall off in the middle of a competition."
Is there a worse kick in the shins than having your longtime ballroom partner drop you – by a text message, no less! – for someone else? Yep. Watching him on the dance floor with her.
On Dancing Queens, airing Tuesdays at 9/8c on Bravo, that potentially explosive drama beats at the core of a potential feud between Colette Marotto and Pooja Mehta, which all started when one professional partner got in the middle of them.
Colette Marotto and Pooja Mehta's Feud, Explained
The behind-the-scenes beef is between Colette Marotto and Pooja Mehta, but the dance universe is tight and connected. There are reverberations for the entire cast. That includes Gaëlle Benchetrit, Leonie Biggs, Donie Burch,and Sabrina Strasser, four more competitive dancers vying for top honors in the professional-amateur Latin ballroom circuit.
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Colette has vividly quipped that “all is fair in war and ballroom.” But reconciling with the fact that Kristijan Burazer, whom she’s called her “whole dance world for two years,” unceremoniously ended their relationship has not been easy.
It's partly because she loves competitive dancing. “If I didn’t have dance in my life I think I would have a lot of Xanax,” she said. Another reason is that she and Kristijan were a great team before she “suddenly and unexpectedly lost him.”
What Started the Feud?
Colette shared nitty-gritty details with a friend during a recent episode.
“It was going really well but he just decided it would go better with a different partner,” she said. “I got partner-dumped. He decided that we weren’t going to dance together anymore.”
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It’s actually not unusual for pro dancers to have different partners. Originally, Kristijan paired with Pooja in a different competitive dance style so it wasn’t a conflict. But then Pooja made a big change.
“I decided to switch from Rhythm to Latin because I love a challenge,” Pooja said in Episode 3 of Dancing Queens.
Kristijan had to make a choice, and he chose Pooja. How Colette learned she was out of a partner has exacerbated the situation — it's like Carrie Bradshaw’s infamous Post-it breakup. In a text, Kristijan told Colette that it was hard for him to split his competitive time between her and Pooja.
Colette quoted his message: “I feel like I need to stop with one of you now that you compete in the same category. I feel like Pooja would just quit completely if she was not dancing with me, and that would be such a shame… I hate having to do this, and I hope you understand. I’m always here if you need anything.”
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As she read the text, Colette called out his last line as BS. “No you’re not,” she said, adding that when she first got it she “cried for, like, two weeks.”
She then dried her eyes, strapped on her dancing shoes, and found a new partner, Oleksiy “Alex” Pigotskyy, who she has called “the best-looking thing to come out of the Ukraine.”
Are the Two Women Still Fighting?
When Colette and Alex failed to make the cut at a contest, she flashed back to her glory days. “Tri-State was devastating because I didn't make the finals,” Colette moaned. “I always made it with my ex-partner, Kristijan.”
Bottom line: Colette is fired up. She wants Kristijan to know she’s still dancing without him. But she also knows that while Pooja is new to Latin ballroom, she’s a good dancer.
Pooja knows that too. Of her other category, Pooja said, “I was the person to beat.”
Count on this feud to stoke competitive spirits. “I would be mortified if Kristijan and Pooja beat me and Alex,” said Colette. “I would rather my dress just fall off in the middle of a competition, which actually did sort of happen to me once.”
For more on the dance floor, shimmy on over to Dancing Queens, airing Tuesdays at 9/8c on Bravo.