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Messages posted since 08/26/2014

Topic: Singing and Dancing reality shows

Author: Janet Hogate Posted: 05/31/10 08:36 AM

What do you think of them? I mean, since the big ones (Idol, Dancing with the Stars and So you think you can dance) started they have done very well in the ratings and continue to do so. They have even spurred "Glee" which is also doing well.

Actually, they're the reason I started writing my musicals because the style of dance fits. Which it wouldn't have say 15 years ago when I actually started writing them but gave it up. Anyway, I know part of the popularity comes from the audience participation and voting but surely thats not all of it . Is it? I mean, basically does anyone simply watch them for the great dancing and/or singing?

Just curious.

Author: Phil Hwang Posted: 05/31/10 09:14 AM

I don't watch them, but I have a few friends who will watch anything that involves dancing. I mean anything. Period. Good or bad. It's like a solid built-in audience.

Author: James Pickering Posted: 05/31/10 09:24 AM

I apologise on behalf of England for inflicting Pop Idol upon you. X factor, Strictly come dancing and Britain's got talent dominates our ratings now (in excess of 12 mil viewers - more for the final). The only thing that can compete are the soaps. X factor (similar to your pop idol, before we axed it) is so formulaic and predictable in my opinion. Britain's got talent is getting that way. Part of its appeal are the auditions where people (especially here in Britain) love to watch people make absolute tits of themselves. I wouldn't be surprised if the ratings are slightly higher for the audition stages actually.

As much as they get ridiculed though they do dominate the TV, and I find myself watching them with my partner. The live semi finals for Britain's got talent starts tonight and no doubt i'll end up watching. Car crash telly they may be, but they're addictive and popular, and there are lessons we can learn from them to adapt into our screenwriting. I remember having a seminar with a fairly succesful sitcom writer here in the UK and he was a firm believer that you learn just as much from bad shows that work/don't work than you do from anything critically acclaimed.

Just my opinion though. My girlfriend loves them.

Author: Janet Hogate Posted: 05/31/10 09:47 AM

I know that "Idol" and "Dancing with the stars" both came from England and/or Austrailia wasn't it? But of course I've never seen either of them only the American versions and specifically Im referring to the Ball Room dancing. Although I do think Idol and Glee does get some tremendous singing on it. I watch both of THEM religously too. Just for the great singing.

But basically, do people like Ballroom dancing like they do on "DWTS" and "SYTYCD" or not? I personally enjoy the Ballroom dance competitions on PBS more but I know its NOT that popular and it only comes on once a year. But the ratings seem to be ALWAYS high for the other two and NOT just the audition part because "DWTS" has none.

Anyway, do you like the "commercialized" (doing it to non-standard ballroom music, skimpy costumes, incorperated with other styles etc.) ballroom dancing or not?

Author: James F. Hollmer Posted: 05/31/10 01:10 PM

You cant help but to see some of it. I like the auditions the best. One great question is what is Mrs Janets level of sing and dance? The people want to know..

Author: James Pickering Posted: 05/31/10 01:48 PM

Strictly come dancing (what you call DWTS) competes with X factor over here every year in the ratings (they're on the two biggest TV channels and go head to head), and both are massively popular. It's slightly different demographics who like them though. I know that if I ask my class which they prefer then the majority will say X factor. My Mum loves strictly though (not that it is that straightforward, but people who are slightly older seem to prefer the dancing). Tbh i'd actually rather watch strictly, but I secretly really want to learn how to dance! (And some of the female dancers are so good looking, but I digress...).

Author: Janet Hogate Posted: 05/31/10 02:37 PM

Sorry James, I was watching a movie or I would have gotten back to you sooner. I started taking formal dance lessons (tap, ballet, jazz, contemparary, gymnastics) from a very young age about 4 I believe. I took them constantly clear through college. Besides just dance recitals, I performed in many , many different shows, troupes, summer camps, growing up not to mention all of the musicals in highschool. Also choreographing them and playing leading roles.

This also lead to taking and teaching ballroom for several years through college and afterwards along with teaching formal dance at different dance studios for different teachers that I new from growing up. I also taught at public schools, choreographed dance routines for different local shows and performed and choreographed several different shows in college(University of Iowa).

Also, when I was in college it was the end of the disco/beginning of the urban cowboy era so I spent all of my social time dancing at either discos or country dance halls. Night life was pretty different back them. For most of us (any way my two or three different social circles) it was all about dancing. Because of my formal training, I think, I pretty much could fit into several diferrent groups (cowboys, disco and hip hop) Yes hip hop has been around a lot longer than you think.

You see, I never really had ambitions to be a professional dancer or go to Las Vegas or Hollywood or broadway or anything like that. And not because I wasnt ever good enough or in shape enough because Im pretty sure I always was, I did have opportunities to.

I just didnt like the thought of what it seem to take to do those things. Not when I was in college. I was somewhat of a goody two shoes. I of course have kicked my self several times since for not at least trying but it looked at the time, like such a surlly and shabby lifestyle at first, it really was stupid on my part.

But anyway, after I graduated from college , I stayed here, taught, choreographed and performed locally ever sense. Besides of course my Claims adjusting career(which pays the big bills) and raising a son. But I always loved dancing and any opportunity I get to learn more, teach or choreograph, I do. Sorry James I was never an exotic or burlesque dancer or anything like that. Not that I couldnt have been if I wanted to, in those days that was really kind of the only way to get there.

I dont believe thats true now. I think dancers have lots of opportunities to go but then, there werent that many if you wanted to dance big time. You had to kind of go sleezy first and I couldn't. I hope no one takes offense to this its just how I saw it when I was young. Again, I have regretted it a million times because I look at the professional dancers my age and I know I could have easily competed with them . But I didn't.

Anyway, that, along with my singing background which I wont go into detail also, is why I write dance musicals and I would simply like to know if you like to watch ballroom dancing. It seems to be popular these days but Im not sure. The programs are really hanging in there but hey , there might be something else going on that I dont know about or understand.

Author: Janet Hogate Posted: 05/31/10 05:16 PM

Thank you , James P, I think if I understand it Strictly is pro ballroom dancers paired with celebrities and they perform different ballroom dancers like DWTS. And x factor , for the younger crowd, are actually real dancers competing against each other like " So you think you can dance". Is that right?

I naturally like the younger one because they(in general) are better dancers. And I personally dont think its regressing to say some of the dancers are very attractive, they are and they dont even get paid that well. Dancers have to work very hard to keep their bodys in shape and..... come up with very creative routines to make non dancers look good. They are very sadly under paid by comparison to film stars and pop singers.

Anyway, dance lessons are really not that expensive and the thing is once you master the basics (ballroom basics ) that is its pretty easy to pick up anything else and .... once you learn, girls will be all over you because duh, girls LOVE to dance and they are always looking for a guy that can at least keep up with the basics.

Author: Martin Burke Posted: 05/31/10 07:57 PM

This explains so much.

Author: James F. Hollmer Posted: 05/31/10 08:15 PM


Wow, thats a cool resume. We had the Push Club at a lot of the great clubs I worked at in the, well a long while back. They looked like they were just floating on air sometimes. It was really cool to look at. I guess it was like ballroom.

Now I dident ask about exotic dancing, however now that that box is somewhat open, but just knowing you from responce's here I can tell you dident have a past on the pole, not that there's anything wrong with that. I have been to just one of those places, and your rite the girls are all over you there, lol

Author: Heather Hughes Posted: 05/31/10 09:43 PM

James P.

The name Strictly Come Dancing sounds very odd to an American ear (at least to mine). Do you know what the title means?

Thanks, Heather

Author: Janet Hogate Posted: 05/31/10 10:54 PM

There was a ballroom dance movie a while back called "Strictly ballroom". Austrailian and I think thats where the name originated. Im not sure, James P?

Anyway, before DWTS and SYTYCD we use to go out dancing all the time. It didnt matter what club or kind of music it was, we still danced ballrooom, basically.

All you need to know is basic swing, cha cha and two step and basically you can dance to any type of music, any time, any where. With a partner of course.

Certainly sometimes you have to speed it up or slow it down but honestly those three are all you need. They fit every music style there is. Honestly. And the basics of all three are very easy. And certainly I dont mean all of the show that professionals put into it. Just social couple dance. Its fun.

(True story) and what I meant by girls being all over you. When we went out dancing alot , which we preferred the country spots because the floors were bigger but at the smaller non country ones there was this old guy as homely as he could be that would show up every Saturday night.

He was a tremendous ballroom dancer. And believe it or not all of the young girls would fight to dance with him. He could dance to anything new , old it didnt matter (like I said swing, cha cha or 2-step). And the young girls loved it and would beg him to teach them and dance with themetc etc. So Im just saying. Girls LOVE to dance.

Author: James Pickering Posted: 06/01/10 02:53 AM

I actually really like the film Strictly Ballroom! I letn it to a friend once a few years back and she still hasn't given me it back...

Strictly is our DWTS, but X factor is our pop idol (except it is open to a far wider age range - there are 4 categories).

So for the ratings it's almost like signing vs dancing - although both shows feature live music from professional singers; Beyonce, Alicia Keys, Leona Lewis, etc...although Simon Cowell has more contacts so he tends to get the bigger stars on the X factor. However the dancers on strictly always put on some incredible (and contemporary) performances inbetween the celebs dancing.

I don't watch these shows religously, however every September when strictly starts up again I always say I want to learn to dance! Maybe this year....

Author: James Pickering Posted: 06/01/10 02:55 AM

Janet you are incredibly passionate about your dancing, it's great to see/read about! They say write what you know, so I imagine that passion really has worked well when transfering to page.

I think it's a shame that a lot of these contests don't seem to cater well for the musical genre.