Dancing Dad Tony Dovolani Heads Back to the Ballroom

09/21/2009 at 06:00 PM ET

For Tony Dovolani, this month not only marked the start of a new season of Dancing With the Stars, it meant celebrating two milestones. His twins Adrian and Ariana turned one on September 8th, and that same day, he took his older daughter, Luana, to her first day of preschool.

How did the hunky Dancing With the Stars pro handle the big events?

“I cried my eyes out. I’m a weeper,” Tony, 36, confesses to Celebrity Baby Blog. “I may look like I’m hard, but I’m not.”

The twins’ first birthday was a small fête with his wife, Lina, and their family in attendance. The fun part of the day was lighting candles on a Diego and Dora the Explorer themed cake for the kids. The not-so-fun part? The twins’ first-year checkup.

“All they got for their birthday was two vaccines each,” he says, laughing. “They cried and I cried along with them. But they were good afterwards.”

Tony relaxing at the family’s Connecticut home with Luana, 4, and twins Ariana and Adrian, 1 — Courtesy Tony Dovolani for use on CBB

The twins’ personalities have started to emerge, the dance champ says. “My son, Adrian, is incredibly cool and calm. And Ariana is feisty, as I want her to be, taking after her big sister a bit. They are starting to walk with help. They take a step or two and we go ‘yay!’”

And when Daddy sent 4-year-old Luana off to preschool the first day, he was impressed with how un-traumatic the event was for her.

“It’s six hours each day, two days a week and I’m thinking, ‘Man, that’s a long day.’ But my wife reminded me she’s used to going on planes, traveling to see me in L.A., so she’s kind of worldly,” Tony says. “I went in there and the other kids were crying and she was like, ‘Okay, see you later.’ She was so cool about it. I love that my girl has such a strong personality and she can be so firm on her feet even at four years old.”

As for Tony, he was a mess. “I went to the car and cried and cried. My wife was going, ‘Will you get a hold of yourself?’”

Dancing With the Stars premieres tonight at 8 p.m. EST on ABC. Tony is partnered with Kathy Ireland.

— Monica Rizzo

Click below for a photo of Luana heading off to school, as well as all three kids playing together.

Luana wheels her backpack on the way to her first day of preschool — Courtesy Tony Dovolani for use on CBB
Adrian, Luana and Ariana play together at the family’s Connecticut home. — Courtesy Tony Dovolani for use on CBB

Ariana wears Ladybugs and Lullabies’ double flower Rowan hair clip (crochet series) in white ($5.49-$5.99).

CBB Readers: Receive 20% off your Ladybugs and Lullabies order using code JP20 at checkout!

Click here for yesterday’s cutie!

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Showing 49 comments

CTgirl on

aww Tony is such an awesome dad and a class act…his children are adorable!!

MJR on

All of them are adorable! Tony seems like a wonderful Dad and the kids seem so happy!

Hayden Hart on

Those are the CUTEST most ADORABLE twins I have ever seen. Their smiles are very contagious! Luana is a beautiful little girl, too!

Lisa on

Aw! Funny how the older one has dark eyes and the twins have bright blue eyes! i love when syblings have different color hair/eyes etc. !

Xan on

My goodness all the kids are beautiful, but THOSE TWINS!!! If I were their mom I don’t know how I’d stop kissing them 🙂

marlee on

Those are three breathtaking children!

Liliana on

Beautiful children! I love the first picture.

Lyndsey on

Gah. Those kids are adorable. But with a daddy that looks like he does I’m not surprised!!

Mallory on

Those kids are absolutely adorable! And WOW I can’t believe the twins are a year old already! It seems like just yesterday they were born.

Rynie on

Watching DWTS now, too bad Tony isn’t dancing tonight. Tony sure does make beautiful babies! Thanks for sharing the pics and the stories with us.

momof3 on

Adorable family and I love that the dad is so sentimental…but, four years old seems a little late to just be starting pre-school and it’s only two days a week….??

caroline on

Tony seems to be a complete gentleman and seeing these photos of him with his children just makes him seem all that more gentleman-like! What a nice site – a professional dancer who spends time with his beautiful wife and children..

momof3 on

I just went back and looked at the photos again and those twins are the cutest! All of them are adorable but I just love those gigantic grins…

Sarah on

God, Tony makes some beautiful babies, doesn’t he? Can’t believe how big the twins have already gotten, and they’re so precious! They look like their daddy! Luana’s beautiful too, just a doll, but I think she looks like Lina.

Nothing wrong with being sentimental, Tony. Some women find it sexy.

Baby2hug on

Tony it is great to hear a Dad on the soft side. I know I cried when my first went to school. Good luck on your show…

CelebBabyLover on

momof3- 4 years old IS a little on the later side to be starting preschool (although I have heard of other parents who wait until their kids are 4 before starting them in preschool)., I think two days a week is actually how it should be for Preschool, especially if it’s going to be six-hour days both days.

At that age, I think going to preschool five days a week is completely unneccesary. I think going for six hours each day is also unnecessary. That is almost a full school day (most Elementary schools have 7 to 8 hour days), and I just don’t think that’s right at that age.

I’m a bit old-fashioned and also don’t like the fact that many schools now have all day, every day Kindergarten. I can understand the all day part when it’s not every day. For example, when I was in Kindergarten, our school day was the same as the other grades, but we only went every other day.

In my opinion, all day, every day schooling can and should wait until First Grade. 🙂

CelebBabyLover on

Oh, and I love how Luana and Ariana are wearing matching outfits in the last picture! 🙂

Anna on

I think preschools and kindergartens do full days now to accommodate working parents.

Over her children start kindergarten at 4 and primary school at 6. So preschool at 4 seems strange but it’s probably different in the US.

Shannon on

I only put my daughter into preschool for a year before she started Kindergarten, so she was 4 1/2 before she went into it. I mostly put her in to get her used to being with other kids in a classroom setting. There was no reason for her to be sitting in a class-like setting for 3 years before she started school. I wanted her to have that time to be free and explore the world, and just be a kid. Seems to be working pretty well, she’s top of her class now!

Tony seems like such a great dad! I love a guy who can let himself be emotional about his kids. And they are beautiful kids too! I have two kids with blue eyes and one with brown too. I think it’s adorable.Love Luana’s curls, and the big old grins on the little ones! Can’t wait to see Tony groovin on DWTS tonight!

Rachel-Jane on

In Scotland we don’t have a regulated preschool or kindergarten (although I think England might have something) but most children will go to a nursery school for a year (sometimes more) before school. I went to mothers&babies groups, then a play group, before going to nursery every weekday morning for a year before I started primary school. Because I was one of the younger in the year I was 3 and a half when I started nursery, and 4 and a half when I started school. I think 4 is an ideal age to be starting a form of preschooling, although I appreciate that nurseries and preschools can offer a solution for wokring parents of younger children.

Those children are absolutely adorable! They all look really alike, especially the twins.

Sandra on

Wow those kids are cute!

Benigna Marko on

They all look so much alike. They are absolutely gorgeous.
Benigna Marko

lucy80 on


lace wigs on

he’s a fantastic dancer, absolutely lovely children.

Beth on

These kids are so stinkin cute.

Shannon on

I’m with Lucy80- where on earth can I get those?!

Shelly on

Maybe Tony wishes he looked all hard! LOL He looks like a softie and apparently he is and I think it’s really sweet. Most men wouldn’t admit that. The kids are adorable.

Mrs. Arlene Machado Banos on

Hi Tony: It’s wonderful that you are such a softie!!!! Your kids will be the better for such softness from you. You care so much! God Bless.
p.s.: You are also a wonderful dancer.

Jen on

XAN that was a little creepy ‘if i were there mum i dont no how I would stop kissing them’! wat the ! ps: the kids are cute

Someone You Know on

Those kids are not only absolutely gorgeous, but they look happy…well done, Tony!!

PS…you’re one of my favorites on DWTS. If the cast ever needs a real-life contestant…CALL ME!!

CelebBabyLover on

Jen- How is that creepy? I’m pretty sure she just meant that the babies are so adorable that it would be hard not kiss them all the time if you were their parents! 🙂

eternalcanadian on

“All they got for their birthday was two vaccines each…”

I hope they aren’t going overboard wtih the vaccines and will be spacing them out over the next decade. Starting at 12 months is a bit early, especially with the boy.

ashleigh on

aw aw aw aw aw ur kids are so cute…

CelebBabyLover on

eternalcanadian- Actually no, 12 months is not early at all to be starting vaccines. In fact, if their parents are following the recommended schedule, babies get their first vaccine in the hospital shortly after birth: the Hepatitis B vaccine.

Then they get more throughout their first year of life, and some at 12 months as well. 12 months, for example, is the age when a lot of babies get their MMR vaccine, and some get the Chicken pox vaccine around that time, too.

Bottomline: I’d much rather those precious little cuties get their vaccines on time than come down with a potentally life-threatening disease!

CelebBabyLover on

Oh, and before you jump on me, yes, I know what Autism is like. I’m on the spectrum myself….and believe it’s genetic. 🙂

sarawara on

I’m in love with Tony! He is absolutely the hottest dancer on DWTS! His kids are precious… such cuties!

Gia on

one of the cutests kids i ever saw! the twins are adorable! Luana is cute! i love her hair. and those eyes on all of the kids! OMG! good luck tony!

CelebBabyLover on

Oh my gosh, I just noticed that Adrian is playing with a cordless phone in the first picture! How cute is that?! 🙂

Jennifer on

Such beautiful children! And those smiles are so contagious – too cute! 🙂

Tony seems like such a great Daddy. It’s obvious that his kids mean the world to him.

Jen on

babies get like 3 vaccines within the first 12 months so 12 months aint to young to be getting vaccines, no need to get into all the techniqual with stuff celebbabylover, but u are right

Vicky on

holy crap, that is one gorgeous family!

Vicky on

i’m sure their pediatrician knows what’s best for them as far as the vaccines are concerned. Twelve months is not too young. Heck, they get shots and crap shortly after birth!

sandy on

Those are beautiful, happy children; and the smile on Tony’s face radiates the love he has for them.

jj on

those kids are too cute!!!

lola espanola on

First time I visit your web. I really like Tony on DWTS. He is such a gentleman with whomever he gets for a partner, but sometimes I think he is unfairly paired. It is not fair that Tony seems to get the much older female partners and seldom moving on to a week seven or eight or higher. He is such a wonderful dancer and great teacher and now with this little glimpse of his personal live, a great dad too. Keep on Dancing, Tony!

jennifer on

omg tony’s kids are so cute! i love the twins! yee! tony is a great dancer as well as a great dad!

Anna Smith on

Tony is such an awesome person. He comes across as such a warm and sincere man. I wished he could have stayed on the show longer.

Sarah on

GORGEOUS kids!! Of course, I am partial to little Ariana because my own daughter’s name is also Ariana!!

vera on