After season 17 of “Dancing with the Stars” came to a close when “Glee” star Amber Riley was crowned the winner, all of the finalists traveled overnight from Los Angeles to join “Good Morning America” in Times Square Wednesday morning for a fun-filled ‘Dancing’ afterparty.
As George Stephanopoulos point out, Riley is the first African-American female to take home the championship — something she admits was no easy feat.
“It meant a lot to me. It was hard,” Riley, 27, explained on “GMA.” “It was something I’d never done before and I put myself in a position to do something hard every single week. Every single week I was learning something I didn’t know.”
Despite an injury to her knee that’s still “really bruised,” Riley certainly made the most of her time on the dance floor.
Riley’s professional partner, Derek Hough, said strangers on the street would tell him, “We never thought she’d be this good. She’s killing it.”
And her fellow “Glee” co-stars agree.
“Congrats, we are so proud of you,” Chris Colfer told Riley in a recorded message following her win. “We can’t believe you signed up for something that involved more dance rehearsals, but we are so proud of you.”
All of the intense dance rehearsals and overnight traveling from Los Angeles to New York didn’t seem to faze Riley, however.
When answering a viewer-submitted Twitter question of “How sexy she feels right now,” Riley didn’t miss a beat with her response.
“I feel early morning sexy,” she said.
“That’s the best kind of sexy,” Jack Osbourne replied.
The other finalists and their partners weren’t off the hook from answering Twitter questions either.
“What are you going to miss most about dancing with Karina,” one tweeter asked Corbin Bleu.
“It’s got to be the accent,” he said of his Ukrainian partner, Karina Smirnoff, who was unable to make it this morning due to a family emergency.”Hearing her just not say articles. ‘I have to go to store.’ She makes me laugh. She cracks the whip. She’s so dedicated. She’s a hard, hard worker.”
Jack Osbourne was up next, with one Twitter follower asking, “In what way did ‘DWTS’ change your outlook on life?”
“It definitely changed my outlook on dancing,” Osbourne replied, jokingly adding, “I used to not care, and now I care. I really, really love it. I’m available for weddings, Bar Mitzvahs.”
When Hough was asked how Riley compares to his other winning partners, he noted her personality on the dance floor.
“Amber was amazing as far as her charisma,” Hough recalled. “She’d do something on show day that we’d never rehearsed. She’d put on this smile. That’s what made her so special. She’d bring something I didn’t teach and that was a lot of fun.”
When professional dancer Cheryl Burke was asked “When is @Tom_Bergeron going to dance?,” she had a clever comeback.
“I know, I keep saying the same thing. I think Tom and I would make great partners,” she said before adding, “Sam, when are you coming on?”
Burke’s question elicited cheers and chants from Sam Champion’s “GMA” co-anchors, Josh Elliott and Lara Spencer.
“Sam! Sam! Sam!,” the audience roared.