Artem Chigvintsev is a Russian-American professional dancer who won the eighth series of the British dance competition show 'Strictly Come Dancing' with his celebrity partner, English actress Kara Tointon. It was his first appearance on the show, and he went on to appear in three more seasons in the following years. He previously contested on the first series of 'So You Think You Can Dance' and was a choreographer on its second season. He has been appearing in 'Dancing with the Stars' since 2014 and is one of the professional dancers on the show. However, he has not been able to reach past quarterfinals on the show. He was a stunt double for the film 'La La Land' and appeared in one episode of the TV show 'The O.C.'.
Childhood & Early Life
Artem Vladimirovich Chigvintsev was born on June 12, 1982 at Izhevsk, Udmurt Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic, RSFSR, Soviet Union.
He won numerous dance competitions in Russia. At the age of 15, he moved to Germany for further training, followed by training in Italy and England.
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Artem Chigvintsev relocated to the United States in 2003 and began dancing with champion ballroom dancer Giselle Peacock. In 2005, he competed in the first series of the dance competition show 'So You Think You Can Dance', on which he became one of the top eight male finalists before being eliminated.
He came back as a choreographer on the second season of the show in 2006. In 2009, he had an uncredited appearance as himself on 'Dancing with the Stars' and danced with Nicole Scherzinger on the music video for 'Hush Hush; Hush Hush' by 'The Pussycat Dolls'.
He joined the cast of the live dance show, 'Burn the Floor', in London, in September 2009, from where he went straight into the eighth series of 'Strictly Come Dancing' the next year. He and his celebrity partner Kara Tointon performed well consistently throughout the run of the show and defeated Matt Baker and Pamela Stephenson in the final on December 18, 2009, to win the series.
In 2011, he again participated in the next season of the show, partnering with Australian actress and singer Holly Valance, with whom he reached the semifinals before being eliminated. In the next season, he partnered with television presenter Fern Britton, but the pair was eliminated in Week 6.
He was paired with former 'Coronation Street' star Natalie Gumede for the eleventh season of 'Strictly Come Dancing'. They reached the finals but lost to model Abbey Clancy, becoming one of the runners-up along with Susanna Reid and Kevin Clifton.
In early 2014, he appeared in the 18th season of 'Dancing with the Stars' as a member of the Dance Troupe and later that year was promoted to professional dancer for the show's next season. Partnered with actress Lea Thompson, he reached the quarterfinals in Week 9 before being eliminated and finished 6th.
He continued to appear on all the later editions of the show, partnering with celebrities Patti LaBelle, Mischa Barton, Maureen McCormick, Nancy Kerrigan, Nikki Bella, Jamie Anderson and Danelle Umstead. However, he was only able to match his previous performance once in the 24th season and finished the latest season in the 12th place.
Family & Personal Life
Soon after settling in the US, Artem Chigvintsev began dating his dance partner Giselle Peacock and the couple got married in 2004. The marriage lasted just about a year as they divorced in 2005.
During his appearance on 'Dancing With the Stars', he met Carrie Ann Inaba, one of the judges on the show, and the two began dating soon after. However, their relationship ended two-and-a-half years later in 2008.
He started dating Kara Tointon after the two were partnered together on 'Strictly Come Dancing' in 2010. They found it increasingly difficult to spend time together because he could not stay in the UK permanently and eventually decided to separate, which the actress confirmed in October 2014.
In May 2016, he was spotted getting cozy with actress Torrey DeVitto at the Philosophy Hope & Grace Luncheon for Mental Health Month in Los Angeles, following which her representative confirmed their romance. In May next year, 'Entertainment Tonight' broke the news that the couple had split, adding that distance was the main factor as the actress was shooting for 'Chicago Med' in Chicago.
He again found love through 'Dancing with the Stars' in 2017 after he was partnered with retired WWE wrestler Nikki Bella, with whom he later reconnected after her very public split from wrestler John Cena. They dated with "no labels" for nearly four months before making the relationship official in July 2019.
Artem Chigvintsev became a naturalized American citizen on September 17, 2014 and currently resides in Palo Alto, California.