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Jodi gives it a twirl

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Jodi gives it a twirl

14 September 2008

Sunday Herald Sun

Home And Away's Jodi Gordon is one of the early favourites on Seven's Dancing With The Stars -- just don't tell her she's in pole position.

Gordon reluctantly admits her limited dancing experience includes a few pole dancing lessons to help her with her Summer Bay role.

"Oh, I've been trying to forget that,'' she says with a laugh. "(My Home And Away character) Martha went off the rails at one point and did a bit of pole dancing, which I had to learn.

"Hopefully, I won't have to incorporate any of those skills in any of my routines on Dancing.''

Apart from "heading out with the girls on a Friday night'', she says her only other dancing training was a week of jazz and tap lessons.

"I can't even remember doing it, but Mum has the photos of me in my leotards,'' Gordon says.

"I rang her and asked her if I had done any dancing and she said, 'Yes darling, I enrolled you because you wanted the uniform. You did jazz and tap for about a week'.

"I guess I got what I wanted out of it.''

Gordon was shocked to find out she was one of the early favourites in the on-line betting for the show, although her odds have drifted this week.

"I can't believe they bet on it,'' Gordon says. "I said to my partner (Channel 7 executive Ryan Stokes), 'Isn't that illegal?' But my Dad thought I was good odds and put $20 on me.''

Gordon says her dancing partner, Stefano Oliveri, has his work cut out.

"He comes from New Zealand where he's won their Dancing show twice and that puts a bit of pressure on him because he's got me as a partner,'' she says.

"The pressure is on me, too, because two other Home And Away girls have won (Bec Cartwright in 2004 and Ada Nicodemou in 2005).''

Gordon is quick to put her DWTS experience into perspective.

"It's a lot of fun, but we've all got our day jobs and acting is my passion,'' she says.

Gordon is pleased with the "heavy duty issues'' her Home And Away character is dealing with.

"I've been blessed with some fantastic storylines,'' she says. "The pole dancing was a bit embarrassing, but (Martha's) had to deal with cancer, losing a baby, getting remarried ... there's so much more to go, I wish I could tell you more.''

Gordon attracted a lot of publicity when her character discovered she had breast cancer because her "soul mate'', partner Chris Burkhardt, died of leukemia in 2007.

"As an actor you draw on your life's experiences, no matter what they are,'' she says. "I also was helped through this entire process by having many conversations with a girl named Nikki Dwyer, who has been through something similar to Martha.''

With a high-profile partner, Gordon says she has learned to deal with unwanted publicity.

"The first time you read something (about yourself), you take it to heart,'' she says. "But then you just say, 'Whatever'. You just have to keep true to what's going on in your life and not take any notice of the (gossip).

"Putting yourself out there is part of the industry. You take it and then you move on.''

Dancing with the Stars

Sundays 7.30pm, Seven

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