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TV stars descend on Patchogue for ‘Ballroom with a Twist’

Gilles Marini doing an on-camera interview before Wednesday night's show. (Credit: Michael White

Women had been calling the box office all week, asking if the rumors were true.

Would Gilles Marini, the Devious Maids actor best known for his Sex in the City movie shower scene of 2008, really be performing in downtown Patchogue?

Their answer? Yes.

But there’s more.

Not only is Marini part of the cast in the interactive celebration of song and dance called Ballroom with a Twist — which is running from Aug. 12-16 in Patchogue through Gateway Playhouse — attendees might even get to chat or dance with him.

They’d get to meet the other performers at Patchogue Theater for the Performing Arts as well.

Those include Anna TrebunskayaChelsie Hightower and others from the show Dancing with the Stars, as well as past participants of American Idol and So You Think You Can Dance. (See video from Wednesday’s warmups.)

In a pre-opening night interview Wednesday, we asked Marini if he was aware the local ladies had been asking about him.

“Saying like, what? What is he not wearing?” the French model responded.

“I’m very excited to do the show,” Marini continued. “People get involved. It’s not only watching and that’s it. There’s a lot more to it, that’s why we call it Ballroom with a Twist, because we’re making people involved.”

So how would admirers of his work and his, um, ability to shower respond to getting so up close and personal with him?

“I think the response is enjoyment and they realize we are very much human,” he continued. “People see the people from the movie industry or whatever it is, not too accessible, but we all become one. Whenever people come to the show we all become one.”

Trebunskaya — who could be described, like many of the others, as a competitive ballroom dancer-turned TV star — said she would have never imagined becoming a recognizable face in the world through her ability to dance.

And of her several seasons on Dancing with the Stars, she said one of her more memorable moments came when she was dancing with NFL hall-of-famer Jerry Rice.

“I came from such a competitive, technical world, and when I was dancing freestyle with Jerry Rice in season two, it was super silly,” she said. “It was a disco number. We wore huge afro whigs. It was so much fun that I was like, oh my gosh this is what the show’s all about.

“You train so much it becomes your job; it’s your profession and you want it to be perfect, that you forget that from the beginning it’s all about enjoying yourself and moving to the music and expressing yourself.”

According to the cast, enjoying yourself is what Ballroom with a Twist is all about.

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mike@greaterpatchogue.com

Photo: Gilles Marini doing an on-camera interview before Wednesday night’s show. (Credit: Michael White)

About the author: Michael White

Michael White is a Bellport resident, longtime newspaper reporter and editor, and the owner of greaterpatchogue.com. Email him your story ideas or tips: mike@greaterpatchogue.com