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Debbie Gibson impresses judges with ‘Dancing With the Stars’ debut

Debbie Gibson with her pro dance partner Alan

Debbie Gibson with her pro dance partner Alan Bersten on "Dancing With the Stars." Credit: ABC / Eric McCandless

Merrick’s Debbie Gibson shone in the nonelimination premiere of “Dancing With the Stars” season 25 Monday night, performing a fox trot set to her own 1989 No. 1 hit “Lost in Your Eyes.”

The 47-year-old singer-songwriter and her pro dance partner, Alan Bersten, earned 17 out of 30 from the trio of judges, with Bruno Tonioli praising their “great partnering . . . [and] wonderful chemistry.” He gently chided Gibson’s good-girl image, saying, “You can’t be too good, come on, [add] a little nastiness in there!”

In a pretaped interview, Gibson said that because of the debilitating Lyme disease with which she has struggled for years, “I feel kind of collapsed in places. . . . I am very competitive and it would be amazing to win but showing up here today is actually a victory because I’ve been hibernating,” she said, adding, “It’s time to put that behind me and find the joy in performing again.”

She told Erin Andrews after her performance that, “I’ve done more this month, in the past month, preparing for this show than I have in an entire year.”

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