Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Dancing with the Stars Returns!

With all the troubles and problems and serious issues about which I could write, this morning it's time for fun: the fourth season of the hit TV show "Dancing with the Stars" started last night, and it was worth the wait!

If you've read my profile or have been following this blog long enough, you know that my wife and I are avid ballroom dancers and long-time Pro-Am competitors (Agnes is the Pro; I'm the Amateur). We love dancing as a sport and are well able to appreciate the hard work that goes into dancing at a competitive level. With that in mind, we approach Dancing with the Stars each season expecting to see a little bit of great dancing, a lot of average dancing, and a few competitors you wish the floor would just open and swallow up. The show is as much a popularity contest as it is a dance event, and we approach it that way.

The lineup of stars was, as usual, lacking in the "A-list" stars we might want to see, but virtually all of them did a great job. The music was good, the choreography generally excellent, and all the color and energy of competitive ballroom dancing were there. We really enjoyed it! It's hard to pick a favorite so early in the season, but I felt the standouts were Laila Ali and Paulina Porizkova among the ladies, and Ian Ziering and Apolo Anton Ohno among the men. The only outright loser I saw was Billy Ray Cyrus, but he's got another week to show if he can really perform.

This season we have a bit of a personal connection to the show, as Agnes and I had the opportunity to meet and have a private lesson with Tony Dovolani (partner of Leeza Gibbons) while we were competing at the Grand National Championships in Miami last October. We found him to be a demanding instructor, but a great performer, a real gentleman, and a lot of fun. If there's a professional we're rooting for, it would be him. Here's a picture of Agnes and I with Tony during our lesson:

So, no heavy thoughts today...just a recommendation for you to tune in Mondays and Tuesdays at 8:00 PM Eastern time for two hours of glamour and fun as a group of B-list celebrities learn that ballroom dancing is both fun and a lot more work than they imagined.

Have a good day. Keep dancing. More thoughts coming.


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