We’re so happy for Nikki Bella, 35, and Artem Chigvintsev, 37! The couple will be walking down the aisle at some point in the (hopefully) near future, and just confirmed their engagement after one year of dating. “Excited for 2020 and the next decade with you @theartemc,” Nikki captioned an Instagram post on Jan. 3, revealing that Artem — who’s best known from Dancing with the Stars actually popped the question months ago! “I said yes in France in November! We have been trying to keep it a secret but really wanted to share our excitement for the New Year!” she continued. The Total Bellas star went on to reveal her emerald-cut diamond, and — we have to say — Artem has some serious taste! Here’s 5 things to know about the man tying the knot with Nikki.
1. He was on Dancing with the Stars. Artem joined ABC’s hit dance series back in 2014, and has had a slew of A-listers as partners including Mischa Barton, music legend Patti LaBelle and his now fiancee Nikki Bella back in 2017! Although Artem never took home the main prize, he was well-loved on the show over his eight seasons — though was shocked when he wasn’t invited back earlier this year! “Getting this call and there’s going to be no involvement with the show from now on, it’s like going through a breakup over ten years,” he spilled on Nikki’s The Bellas podcast. “I dedicated 10 years of my life to that company and being let go three days before the announcement, that’s like a punch in the stomach really. I can’t let anyone decide my fate from now on.”
2. He got his start on another dance series. Artem first gained public notoriety after his 2010 debut on BBC One’s Strictly Come Dancing which is the show DWTS is originally based on. Following a similar format, where professional dancers are paired with celebrities, Artem spent four years on the series — which is where he met his ex, actress Kara Tointon, 36. The pair won season eight, and Artem came close yet again as the runner-up with Coronation Street’s Natalie Gumede.
3. He was born in Russia. Artem was born Artem Vladimirovich Chigvintsev on June 12, 1982 in the military town of Izhevsk, Russia (formerly the Soviet Union). Discovering his love for dance at just 13, his parents enrolled him in classes eventually moving to Moscow, Germany and then England to pursue his passion! After four years on Strictly Come Dancing, Artem moved to the United States in 2014 and is now a naturalized citizen.
4. He has some high profile exes. In 2006, Artem made headlines when he began dating DWTS judge Carrie Ann Inaba, despite their 14 year age difference. The couple unfortunately called things quits after two-and-a-half years and the split was amicable. “As much as our relationship was really good, we realized neither was ‘the one’ for the other. It was very sad to let go of something that was so good on so many levels,” Carrie said at the time. Previously, Artem was married from 2004 – 2005 to his dancing partner Giselle Peacock, and also dated his Strictly Come Dancing partner, actress Kara Tointon from 2010 – 2014.
5. He starred in a Pussycat Dolls video. Yup, that’s right — Artem got to get up close and personal with the one-and-only Nicole Scherzinger! The dance pro is prominently featured in the sexy 2009 video for “Hush Hush.” Beginning as a break-up ballad, the track changes gears mid-way through with an epic cover of Gloria Gayner‘s “I Will Survive.” Catch Artem showing off his moves in the video’s disco party scene alongside the sexy PCD ladies!