The Real Housewives of New Jersey star’s attorney, James Leonard, confirmed Teresa’s plans to stay on both the east and west coast after the 50-year-old was announced as one of the celebrities competing on season 31.
“DWTS producers pulled a few strings so that Teresa can train with her dance partner, close to her four daughters and new hubby in New Jersey,” the attorney told TMZ on Thursday, September 8. “In order to perform on the show from L.A., she will fly from NJ to L.A. each week a day or two before the show’s taping.”
Teresa, who tied the knot with Luis Ruelas last month, is partnered with Pasha Pashkov in the competition.
The Bravo personality shared that her youngest daughter, Audriana, 12 — who is a competitive dancer — gave her some major advice ahead of DWTS.
“She’s like, ‘Mommy, don’t be scared. Most importantly, have fun. Feel your partner’s energy,’” Teresa said during her Good Morning America appearance on September 8. “I love watching her on stage and shine. I hope I can do the same for her.”
Teresa also revealed that this wasn’t the first time she was asked to be a contestant on the show. The first opportunity came following her year-long prison stint at the Federal Correctional Institution in Danbury, Connecticut after pleading guilty to fraud. However, she wasn’t ready to enter the ballroom.
“It’s better now, because – I hate to say the word, prison – but I got asked to be on Dancing With the Stars as soon as I came home. And I remember I was struggling with it,” she told Page Six following the DWTS cast announcement. “The kids were still young and I just got home and I didn’t want to leave them. … I was very torn. But then I couldn’t do it anyway because I had to be on Bravo first.”
Now, the timing is right for her to compete.
“It’s been a dream come true because I’ve been watching Dancing with the Stars, I mean, forever. I watched it when my dad [the late Giacinto Gorga] was living with me, with my dad. And today’s my dad’s birthday,” Teresa shared. “So it really was meant to be. So, yeah, he’s looking down on me and I know he’s really proud.”