Martina Navratilova Will Be The First Lesbian Celeb To Appear On Dancing With The Stars

Tennis legend Martina Navratilova will be the first (out) celebrity lesbian to appear on ABC’s Dancing With the Stars when it premieres this March 19.

And, yes, she’ll be dancing with a man—specifically, Tony Dovolani, a Kosovan-American ballroom pro. So they’re both pros with balls.

Other celebrities who will join the 14th season on the ABC hit include actress Melissa Gilbert, The View cohost Sherri Shepard, and singer Gladys Knight.

Navratilova told AARP magazine that ABC has been trying to get her on the show for years, but that she wasn’t sure she was in physical shape for it. Said Martina:

“I have an arthritic big toe—from playing too much soccer as a kid. So it hurts in high heels. But [ABC] told me I didn’t have to wear such high heels, so my toe apprehension was alleviated…

“I’m hoping my male partner will be a bit of a bully and push me. I love learning new stuff and I’m a very good student. But sometimes I need the push.”

We always suspected you had a little masochist in you, Martina. We also suspected you might be a dance-machine party animal.

“My best [dancing] memory is from Billie Jean King’s 50th birthday party—a big bash in New York. It was at Denim & Diamonds, and I just danced the night away, mostly by myself. I had a couple of tequila shots and felt totally uninhibited. I was just glad it wasn’t me turning 50!”