America's ballroom challenge returning to PBS


Well-Known Member
Well Tony was speaking off the cuff. He showed once again he doesn't know what a viennese waltz is.
I was really hoping he was reading a cue card. As I would expect BOTH of them to know the difference I figured maybe they're watching a bad tape delay and reading what's written.

And the way to pay for it is to remind PBS they're publicly funded. Pledge and TELL THEM why you're pledging. Let the sponsors know what it is you want-more Ballroom Challenge.


Well-Known Member
Cal. Would you pay for it too? The producers made it clear that 3 hrs was the budget. Maybe we should raise money for pbs to increase the time. A DF bake sale perhaps ?
I'm not sure I understand your comment and question.:confused: Yes, I contribute to my local PBS station, but I think in my area all contributions go to general programming, not specific shows. I'd likely increase my contribution if I could make sure that it went towards more ballroom coverage. As to the 3-hour budget - I'm was just suggesting that they allocate the 3 hours to two 90-minutes segments. Or do they *have* to show it in 3 60-minute segments?


Active Member
I think they decide what to show based on funding.. Years ago they had 5 one hour segments, then funding was cut to a single hour and then they disappeared.. I think they have to get specific funding for this show, at least it seemed to indicate that based on the interview I watched. PBS seems to believe that the show dances are the big sellers. I didn't watch much, when they started with VW, I wasn't sure what they were thinking.


Well-Known Member
I admit I'm biased toward Standard, but Round 2 seemed better to me. Pity they didn't show any VW. And ONE dance for Latin? I'd prefer to see samba over jive but whatever.

Also seemed like the announcers were a little more with it.

Highlight: about 2 seconds of teacher dancing during a gang shot.

Not sure if I'll go out of my way to watch next Friday.


Well-Known Member
Isn't that more dancing per second than we see on DWTS?
....Nope. Especially not if you count the DWTS rehearsal footage and guest artists. Plus as DWTS (who I'm sure pays a lot better) has a much better camera crew (and of course the ability to rehearse and block) the actual footage shot is a lot easier to watch. For a start DWTS has slowly figured out that if you want to film someone dancing, you should minimize half-body close ups that cut off the feet. On Ballroom Challenge someone with attention deficit disorder apparently did the edits, the "group dance" (the multi-dance finals) as shown out of order (and at one point they straight-up misidentify Smooth Waltz as Smooth Viennese), and the commentary's just inept. It's like the nadir of figure-skating coverage when you had Scott and Sandra trying to comment on a new scoring system they didn't understand at all and yakking to fill air time. The worst part is they really spend almost no time talking about the actual dancers or explaining in any way why one couple won or not.


Well-Known Member
Watching ABChallenge tonight to see little one Daniel dance with his mom, ChaCha Exhibition...headed to Clayton's Brewery to join everyone for viewing pleasure.
Is it me, or was the first round, the short programs, which were supposed to be "by the book" actually the "out of the box" ones and vice versa? Or did they show them out of sequence again? o_O anyway, I agree with #1-4. Yaaaay. PBS, thanks for trying.


Well-Known Member
Meh, there's only so many times you can hear how much he appreciates the couples' "taking risks" and "really taking a risk there" and how "the judges are looking to see them take risks." Although, in his defense, he does pepper in how he appreciates "her commitment to the movement" now and then. And of course, his trademark inability to tell the difference between 4/4 and 6/8 time. Basically, the show would be much better if they'd just not have hosts at all. Tell me something useful or shut up. I'm not a fan of hosts who talk just to talk. (Kind of why I don't watch DWTS anymore. Got tired of judges and co-hosts chosen for ability to look nice in a dress yammering about nothing.)
I also am not a fan of the pro-am shows. Get rid of those and the shopping and hair segments and they'd have time to show more of the "group rounds."


Well-Known Member
I disagree. They are done excellently at Blackpool and many other venues. The director calls the shots, but in these days of multi camera and multi streams, it should be easy to put them together. The WDSF is a great example of good production values and coherent commentary, in their vids.


Well-Known Member
I'm still only on the 2nd episode, but so far:

1. The scripted commentary makes me want to pull out my hair. And much of what's being said is not helpful or enlightening even for those unfamiliar with ballroom.

2. Would like to see more of the heats/group rounds (echoing others' sentiments), in all or most of the dances to the extent possible.

3. Agree that the smooth showdances were all angst-driven... I'm still surprised about being way more pumped by the more creative standard showdances (which I had expected to leave me cold).

4. I didn't mind the vendor sections, that was fun to see.

5. I wasn't a huge fan of the pro-am showdances either. It was confusing because they weren't (correct me if I missed something) part of the group rounds, so it was mixing apples and oranges without clearly labeling each fruit separately.

Overall, if I didn't love ballroom, I wouldn't have made it past about the first 20 minutes of episode #1.

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