Dancing "Game Shows"


Last week we listed some dance-themed board games to go along with our Spring Festival theme: Games.  This week, the focus is on game shows!  There are many entertaining game shows to watch on television including, Wheel of Fortune, Jeopardy, The Price is Right, and Deal or No Deal.  These game shows are classic and fun, but they’re missing a little something – movement!  Luckily, there has been a recent surge in the amount of dance shows that are on television.  While these shows are not actually “game shows”, they are competitive programs where contestants compete for a specific prize, so they do share some aspects with game shows!  This week I’m going to list some of the best dance shows to watch out for on TV.


Dancing with the Stars

This dance competition show has become very popular not only because of the fantastic dance numbers, but because of the star-studded cast.  What makes this show special is that each season invites various celebrities to dance with professional dancers to compete in a variety of ballroom and Latin styles.  Each week, the contestants and their partners are assigned a random dance style and have to perform for the judges.  The three judges will give the couple a score out of 30 and viewers are also able to vote on their favorite pairs.  The judges’ scores are combined with the votes received from the public, and the couples with the lowest scores are revealed on a separate results show.  By the end of the results show, the lowest scoring couple is eliminated.  One couple is eliminated every week until the best and favorite couple wins the competition.


Strictly Come Dancing

This British television show is a follow-up from an older British ballroom dancing show called Come DancingStrictly Come Dancing’s format is actually very similar to that of Dancing with the Stars.  Professional dancers are paired with various stars and TV personalities to perform in a ballroom and Latin dance competition.  They are assigned a random style, prepare the dance within the week before the show is recorded, and perform a 90 second dance in front of judges and a studio audience.  The panel of judges gives the dance couples a score out of 40 for each dance they perform and viewers can vote for the couples that they want to stay on the show.  Each week, one couple leaves the show if they don’t receive enough votes.   The only main differences between this show and Dancing with the Stars are that there are four judges on the panel and the show introduced a “dance off” system where the two couples who received the lowest score that week dance for a second chance to stay on the show.  After the dance-off is done, the judges choose who will stay and who is eliminated.   The elimination process continues each week until winners are chosen.


So You Think You Can Dance

This competitive dance show was created by American Idol producers, and has even been referred to as the “dance version of American Idol” because of the great professional opportunities it provides to those who compete on the show.  Open auditions are held for the casting of this show, and dancers that are skilled in a variety of styles show up to impress judges for a chance to be on the show.  After a series of additional audition processes, a handful of dancers are chosen to appear on the show as finalists.  Each week, dancers are paired up, assigned a dance style, and given choreography that they must perform.  The judges do not give out scores, but they do offer feedback to the dancers.  Viewers then vote for their favorite dancers to stay on the show.  The audience voting system is similar to that of Dancing with the Stars and Strictly Come Dancing, but the dancers are judged individually even though they are in pairs.  When the results are in, the dancers with the lowest scores “dance for their lives” in their own styles to show the judges that they deserve to stay in the competition.  Eventually, the judges send two dancers home and dancers are assigned to new partners if theirs was eliminated.  Some seasons of the show have a single winner, while other seasons allowed for a male and female winner.  Overall, the show offers a fantastic showcase of a wide variety of dance styles (including ballroom, musical theatre, and even Bollywood and Russian dances) and has helped the careers of many talented dancers.


America’s Got Talent

While this show is not exclusively a dance show, it does feature multiple movement-based acts including dancers, gymnasts, acrobats, contortionists, and even pole athletes.  America’s Got Talent is a widely broadcasted talent show where singers, magicians, comedians, dancers, etc. compete for a monetary prize (usually 1 million dollars) and the chance to headline a show in Las Vegas.  Contestants always perform in front of celebrity judges who provide critiques after each act.  During their acts, the judges may express their disapproval of an act by pressing a red buzzer on their table which will make an “X” appear above the stage.  Anyone who receives X’s from all judges must stop their act and be immediately eliminated from the show.  After a number of contestants are chosen to continue, multiple rounds are run until a winner is ultimately chosen.  The show has given opportunities to many talented and little-known performers and is broadcasted in over 58 countries including the UK, Sweden, Germany, India, and Brazil.


World of Dance

This show is based on the “World of Dance” brand which encompasses many platforms including World of Dance competitions in over 25 countries, a live tour, a fashion line, and now this competitive dance show.  The television program first premiered in 2017 with Jennifer Lopez, Derek Hough, and Ne-Yo as the judges.  The contestants of the show are picked from qualifying events around the nation and through online submissions.  They are divided into several different divisions based on their ages and number of dancers within a group.  Each episode, the dancers showcase their skills for the judges and are scored according to the World of Dance scoring criteria which examine performance, technique, choreography, creativity, and presentation.  The show is also divided into a series of rounds including Qualifiers, Duels, Cuts, and Finals.  In the Finals, the last three acts that are remaining compete to win the million dollar prize.  While this show just only premiered last year, it received great ratings and will return for a second season this summer!  Like So You Think You Can Dance, it features dancers in a wide variety of styles, but also gives duets and group acts the chance to perform and compete together.  The show is also unique because of its scoring system.  Instead of the judges giving one general number to score dancers, they judge them based on specific elements, giving the selection process more depth.


Happy Dancing! ^_^