"It's my first solo tour!" he told us when we asked if sister Julianne Hough would be joining. "I'm having live musicians, amazing live dancers. Some of the dancers from previous seasons of 'World of Dance' are actually touring with me. I literally saw them and thought they were incredible when they auditioned and wanted to have them come along. It's really cool to see that I used to judge these dancers, and now I'm gonna be dancing with them on the road because they're just amazing at what they do."
"That's one of the great things about 'World of Dance,'" he added of the competition show, set to return to NBC Feb. 26. "It's not just about the people who win, it's also about the people that are able to get jobs and opportunities, and I wanted to sort of do that for them. It's exciting! It'll be a high-energy show."
The show will feature brand-new stage production, astounding versatility and Derek's magnetic stage presence. Fans will journey through a true fusion of dance and music, as Derek explores styles ranging from ballroom and tap to salsa and hip-hop and everything in between.
You can buy tickets to see his live dance show here.
Derek also weighed in on Jennifer Lopez's controversial Mowtown tribute she performed at this year's Grammy Awards, telling us, "When you have Smokey Robinson and Berry Gordy -- who is the man who founded Motown -- when they go on record and say, 'Motown was and is for everybody. We set out to create new music for everyone, and the fact that it inspired a young Latina girl from the Bronx just means that our mission was accomplished.'"
"So for me, I look to them, to the actual living legends of Motown, who not only okayed it and confirmed it, but actually celebrated it," he added. "In my opinion, I think that says enough."
Derek got to know J.Lo when they were cast to sit alongside each other on "World of Dance" back in 2017. He told us he remembers her turning to him one day while sitting at the judges panel and saying, "Yeah, so, I met this dude." That dude turned out to be Alex Rodriguez.
"I said to her, 'Oh, that's cool,'" he recalled. "And then two years later, here we are. I'm beyond happy for them. They're an awesome team."
The professional dancer also had quite the first encounter with the retired Yankee. He prefaced his story with, "I wasn't really a big sports guy growing up, as you can imagine!" We were all ears.
"So the first time I met Alex, he was like, 'Hey, man, my daughters are big fans of yours,'" Derek explained. "So I was like, 'Oh, thank you! What's your name?' And he goes, 'My name's Alex.' I'm like, 'Oh, cool, Alex. Nice to meet you, brother!' And then later on, I realized that was Alex as in A-Rod, the freaking legend!"