JoJo Siwa and her dance partner Jenna Johnson might be playing with a bit of an unfair advantage on this season of Dancing With the Stars. Sure, Siwa is a Dance Moms alum with years of training, but that’s not the advantage we’re talking about. Siwa and Johnson are powered every week by the performance-enhancing substances known as Gucci and boba. The pair appeared at this week’s Vulture Fest along with their fellow semifinalists to discuss season 30 and address how they’re making history as the show’s first same-sex pairing, a decision that came months after Siwa came out as pansexual. “Two girls can dance together,” Siwa said. “Why not!” Siwa also shared the duo’s pre- and post-show ritual, and hoo boy, is it elaborate.
“Every show day, I sit in [Johnson’s] trailer, criss-cross applesauce on her couch, and I give her a Gucci present. Every single show day,” Siwa says. Then, they order boba, make a TikTok and do a three-minute plank and 15 push-ups. They run their dance in the breezeway, and then, “we do a speed run where we run it really fast. Then we go into this corner, we say a prayer, we activate the holy spirit.” Powerful shit, and it only builds from there. They hold hands a certain way all through hair and makeup, and while they walk through the curtain, “the same way every single time, no new things.” And then they chant: “We are prepared, we are excited, and we have each other,” before hitting their pose and getting into the routine. It might explain how they’ve made it so far in the competition. That, or Siwa’s lifetime of dance training.
After the show, Johnson’s parents order them a charcuterie board and they stuff themselves with cheese and meats. “Salamis to the face. It is the best,” says Johnson. And that’s what it takes to (hopefully) win a mirrorball.