Peta Murgatroyd On Why Some 'DWTS' Contestants Do Well Even When Their Moves Aren't Up to Par (Exclusive)

Peta Murgatroyd
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While Dancing With the Stars fan favorite Peta Murgatroyd isn't lending her talents to this season's line-up of couples, the two-time Mirrorball trophy winner says she's still watching and she's impressed by the level of competition.

ET's Deidre Behar spoke with the 32-year-old New Zealand-born professional dancer -- who is currently offering a private dance lesson and dinner as part of a charity auction benefiting Alfalit International -- and she opened up about her favorite celebrity dancers of season 27.

"I have been loving a few people… I love Witney [Carson]'s partner, Milo [Manheim]. His dance on Monday night was insane," Murgatroyd reflected, referring to the 17-year-old Disney star's Charleston from DWTS' New York City night. "I also think Tinashe is amazing, she has a lot of background training for this show so I think she’s definitely a frontrunner."

Another star Murgatroyd has her eye on is former NFL pro DeMarcus Ware, who has been delivering consistently impressive performances with his partner Lindsay Arnold.

"He’s got charisma, he’s got some rhythm and football players generally do well on this show because they have that tenacious attitude and they can really go out there and sell it and he’s doing that for me," Murgatroyd shared. "He’s really really good."

She also had some words of praise for Instagram star Alexis Ren, especially after her impressive "Swan Lake" performance on Monday's show.

"She is so graceful and balletic and her lines are so gorgeous," she marveled. "So there’s a lot of competition this season."

However, fans of the show will be the first to point out that dancing prowess and footwork aren't the only things that count towards a star's progress on the show -- sometimes a strong fan base can get people a long way.

Which is likely why Bachelor nation star "Grocery Store Joe" Amabile has managed to stay out of jeopardy for the first two weeks of the show, despite trailing at the bottom of the leaderboard.

"He’s getting that popular vote and Bachelor nation is so strong. I had two Bachelors, so I get it," said Murgatroyd, referring to her season 16 partner, Sean Lowe, and her season 24 partner, Nick Viall. 

"My two Bachelors had no dance experience either and I got to [week] seven with both of them, or maybe even [week] eight with Sean," she recalled. "It’s all about how hard you try, and how hard you can pick yourself back up and keep moving when you make a mistake."

"It is so tough for these guys to come out there and dance in front of an audience and then to millions of people when they’ve had no sort of background of even performing or doing it on television like that," Murgatroyd added. "It’s incredibly daunting and I take my hat off to them because he's doing a good job, and the best that he can."

Amabile's partner, Jenna Johnson, is Murgatroyd's future sister-in-law (Johnson is engaged to Val Chmerkovskiy, brother to Murgatroyd's husband, Maksim), so she's actually met Amabile and his girlfriend, Kendall Long.

"We went to dinner a couple of weeks ago before the premiere," she shared. "He and his girlfriend are so funny and so lovely and so down to earth."

While this season of DWTS is already off and running, the spinoff series, Dancing With the Stars: Juniors, is premiering on Sunday and Murgatroyd said she will absolutely be watching -- and one day she'd even like see her baby boy, Shai, competing on the show.

"I would love Shai to start some dancing. I’m not sure when he’d be able to do that with his attention span right now, it’s not anywhere near being in a classroom of people," she said of her 1-year-old. "But I think that would be incredible."

Murgatroyd and her handsome husband welcomed their adorable baby boy in January 2017, and they are already weighing their options about expanding their family once again.

"It’s not like we set a date or anything but maybe that’s all gonna happen? I honestly don’t know. I’m taking it day by day," she said, explaining that she's focusing a lot of her energy on her burgeoning acting career at the moment. "I’m doing a lot of auditions and I’m a full-time mom as well so I’m balancing those two things… so I’m still so busy."

Although she's not too busy to auction off her valuable time for a good cause, like Alfalit International, which works to help foster literacy, education and essential life skills among young people in underserved communities throughout Africa, Latin America Europe and the United States.

"I was sitting at the table with the founder of Alfalit and I threw up my hand and I said, 'I want to be a part of it now.' So I would love to do something," said Murgatroyd, who explained that her husband has been involved with the organization for several years. "If I can use myself to raise one dollar towards what Alfalit has been able to do for children and for adults around the world, then I would be totally willing to be a part of it."

Those who would like to bid on the chance to get a private dance lesson and a nice lunch with the celebrated DWTS champ can check out the Charity Buzz auction here.

Week three of Dancing With the Stars kicks off Monday at 8 p.m. ET/PT on ABC.


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