Perth girl dances with the stars


When professional ballroom dancer Katrina Patchett Perth almost 10 years ago, she never imagined she would end up shimmying across the stage with some of the world's biggest stars.

The Kardinya-raised 24-year-old blonde bombshell moved to Europe at age 16 after making a name for herself as one of Australia's top ballroom champions.

And earlier this year, she won France's version of Dancing with the Stars (Danse Avec les Stars) with her celebrity partner, pop star Matt Pokora.

"I started dancing at three and I won my first Australian championship at seven," she tells Access All Areas from her home in Paris. "At 16, I moved to Denmark to continue my dancing career and have lived in several countries since then, including Slovenia, Italy and France.

"My French dance partner Maxime Dereymez told me they were starting DWTS in France.

"We both decided that we would do the casting and were both accepted."

While Patchett, who will be in the next season of the show later this year, took home the glitter ball trophy with Pokora, Dereymez finished second with French-

Moroccan singer Sofia Essaidi.

And since landing the high-profile gig, Patchett and Dereymez have had the honour of working with some big names. "Maxime and I worked with Salma Hayek at the end of last year, which was just amazing."

"She performed with Maxime on a TV show here so we got to teach her at her amazing house in Paris.

"I was lucky enough to go shopping with her in Paris VIP style."

Patchett is also pals with high-profile US fashion designer Marc Jacobs.

"He has a house in Paris and New York and we met by chance on a night out in Paris," she says. "From then on we have kept in touch and became friends."

But despite her glamorous new life, one sacrifice Patchett has had to make is spending time at home with her family and friends in Perth.

"Although I am still an Aussie girl at heart, I haven't been home for about a year now and have no idea when the next time will be because of the heavy workload I have at the moment."