• Kristyn Burtt

'Dancing with the Stars: Juniors': Akash Vukoti Jumps at a 'Once-in-a-Lifetime Opportunity'

Updated: Jul 23


Akash Vukoti had the time of his life on Dancing with the Stars: Juniors this summer. #TeamWitney is the youngest team competing on the show, but they are showing how strong and mighty they are.

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Akash is used to being in this position because he was the youngest boy to ever compete in the Scripps National Spelling Bee at the age of six. He's now nine years old and showing the world that he's not only smart, but he's also a natural performer.


DWTS: Juniors co-executive producer Deena Katz saw that innate talent early on and emailed Akash's dad, Krishna Vukoti, and asked him to be on the show. Akash jumped at the opportunity.


"When I heard about it, I wanted to be on this show. This is the first season they've done the show and that's already cool, but I was jumping for joy," Akash shared with Dance Dish recently. "I had no words at that moment. I felt like this is something I could try doing, I want to learn a new skill. It's a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, so I just wanted to go with that. I had zero experience before I went on the show."


More: Where Does 'DWTS' Star Witney Carson See Herself In 10 Years?


Akash was paired up with Juniors pro Kamri Peterson and Dancing with the Stars mentor Witney Carson. It turned out to be a match made in heaven.


"They are both fantastic. I just love them so much. They are the best partner and mentor I could ever have on the show. What they do is astonishing."


The biggest challenge was having to learn two dances at the same time because the ABC show was shooting two episodes per week.


"It was a lot of hard work, dedication and practice into whatever dance we were doing. Sometimes we learned up to three or four dances every week," he explained. "That was something. It's really difficult to do when you're a nine-year-old fourth-grader with no experience in dance and you're going to be on a dancing show."

His favorite dance in the first four weeks of the show was the Cha-cha because he felt like it was "a good dance" for him and it was "energetic." In the end, the show and learning the art of dance brought something extra special to his life.


"It was such a great experience. I loved it. It was a lot of teamwork and it might look like we are rivaling each other, but that's not the case at all. We are a part of the Dancing with the Stars family now and I'm just really happy," Akash revealed. "We are best friends. We support each other and we cheer each other on. I am so happy I took the opportunity."


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