Credit: ABC

Derek Hough has struggled through a back injury on Dancing With the Stars Season 15 All-Stars but he still managed to come out as one of the biggest frontunners of the season. So, what’s ahead for the Semifinals this week? Wetpaint Entertainment caught up with Derek at Rolling Stone’s Official AMA After-Party on Sunday, November 18, in Hollywood, CA to talk all things DWTS.

Wetpaint Entertainment: Was there a particular dance that was the hardest for you this season?

Derek Hough: Oh my God – this week. Learning a different style – Bhangra. I was like what? It’s a hard week so we’ll see. It was weird [learning new dance styles]. I wasn’t used to it.

How many hours of practicing have you guys been doing?

A lot. Many many hours. Over 40 a week. It got crazy!

Who do you think was the most improved so far on the season?

I feel like they’ve all been pretty consistent. I really feel like my partner Shawn has really improved in terms of performance wise – coming out of her shell she’s really come a long way so in that sense I think Shawn in terms of coming out and really exposing herself.

What have you done to pull her out of her shell?

Oh I’m so bad around her it’s crazy. You don’t even want to hear things I say around her. I really desensitize her.

So you’re like the boot camp dance partner?

A little bit, yeah.

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