Actress Justina Machado Earns Praise on ‘Dancing With the Stars’ From Co-Star Rita Moreno

Lead Photo: Photo courtesy of Netflix.
Photo courtesy of Netflix.
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On Monday night (Sept. 28), Puerto Rican actress Justina Machado (TV’s One Day at a Time) added the Charleston to her repertoire of dance skills during her performance on ABC’s Dancing with the Stars.

Since the episode was branded as “Disney Night,” Machado and her partner Sasha Farber entertained audiences dancing to the song “Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious” from the 1964 musical Mary Poppins. Before Monday, the pair was tied for first place.

“The Charleston is not something I bust out on a regular basis,” Machado told Remezcla Tuesday afternoon. “For never doing that dance, I think I did as we as I could possibly do.”

Machado is the only Latina competing on Season 29 of the hit reality show. Although some might see this as an unfair advantage because most Latinas are born with a natural ability on the dance floor (wink, wink), Machado doesn’t feel guilty about her innate talent. She’s not going to ease up on her competition because of it.

“No chances,” Machado said laughing. “They get no chances!”

Machado admits that there is less pressure this season since there aren’t live spectators watching her.

“I can’t even imagine what it would be like with an audience,” she said. “But without it, it’s not as scary.”

Although there isn’t an audience in the studio, there are still millions of people watching from home. One of them is Machado’s One Day at a Time co-star Rita Moreno (West Side Story) who, of course, is known for her dancing prowess.

“[Rita] loves it,” Machado said. “I’m on a text chain on Monday nights with my One Day at a Time family. She always a part of it and always supportive.”

So, since Monday night featured Disney songs, how about an episode this season featuring famous musicals, so Machado get a chance to dance to “America” from West Side Story?

“Oh, God, I wish,” Machado said. “I’m sure they could never get the rights to that, especially since the remake is coming out. But that would be brilliant.”

New Dancing with the Stars episodes air Mondays at 8 p.m. EST.