For the past several weeks, I have been tuning in regularly to watch season 19 of Dancing with the Stars. I tried to get familiar with the celebrities, their professional dance partners, what the judges were looking for, and how each dance was scored. Why? Homework, of course. On Monday evening, November 3rd, I had the privilege of being in the studio to watch the show live and in person!
Dancing with the Stars: It’s All So Real Now!
We entered through the back lot and scoped out what kind of cars each of the celebrities drive. Tommy Chong rushed past us nursing a his shoulder (someone had opened a door and hit it) while Erin waved at us as her makeup was being finished (in the red back stage area). It all happened so fast though.
Our group was the first to arrive, which made walking across the dance floor and posing for photos much easier. The entire studio was much more compact in real life than it seems on television.
It was pretty funny to see all the staff shuffling around us as we were all busy on our smartphones getting those commemorative shots. Next, we were ushered up some stairs to the lower balcony and shown to our seats, all donning a paper with “Mommy Blogger” on it.
I ended up sitting toward the corner so I missed some of the performances that reached to the one edge of the floor. Still, I had a pretty good view. The studio is really dazzling with all the bling and shining lights.
Dancing with the Stars: Being in the Audience is Work!
For those in the audience, it’s a constant routine of standing up, clapping, cheering, sitting down, then doing it all over again. There was an MC of sorts who signaled us every time we needed to do something. This continued for the entirety of the taping. We couldn’t hear anything Erin or Tom said since they were just talking into the camera microphones and we were supposed to be cheering. At least we were able to quiet down and listen to the judges comments.
During commercial breaks, the MC would talk to some in the audience and maybe hand them a shirt. The stage staff worked frantically during the pre-recorded bits from rehearsals to transform the stage for each performance. They were crazy fast with setting everything up and it was impressive, especially when a lot of props were involved!
To maintain the classy ambiance of the show, audience members are not allowed to have mobile phones. We were a special case and were allowed to take photos before and after the show (not during) and to live tweet during commercial breaks. So, while I can’t share any personal photos from the live taping, I was cleared to share this video taken during rehearsal for a quick promo shoot.
Dancing with the Stars: Hanging Off-Set
After the taping was done, it was time for us to head to Mixology for some food and drinks. While there, much of the cast came by to visit with us. It was quite hectic but tons of fun. Lea and Artem loved the bloggers and couldn’t get enough of chatting with us. Val was a complete flirt while Janel was just focused on her food. Allison arrived with her daughter and was extremely friendly. Keo seemed a bit overwhelmed with our ongoing selfies but was happy to join in.
Sadie came with the rest of her family and, yes, she and her mother are gorgeous. Very cordial and easy going as well. Mark was down to earth as his mom took photos of us with him. It was pretty strange watching the real Sadie and Mark watching themselves on the television overhead. This was the first time they saw their routine and Mark was so animated with pride for how well Sadie did. So cute!
Dancing with the Stars: In Studio vs At Home
Watching Dancing with the Stars live and being in the audience is a totally different experience than watching it at home on television. At home, you can enjoy the dancing and the expressions close up and hear all the commentary. While I truly enjoyed being a part of this unique experience, I’m quite happy that I get to enjoy the rest of the season from the comfort of home, snuggled on the sofa with my family.
Tonight (11/17) on ABC, it’s the Semi-Finals of “Dancing With the Stars” Season 19. Five couples are left and each will dance to both a plugged and unplugged version of the same song. One couple will be eliminated before the finals next week. The two-night finale will be on 11/24 and 11/25 so make sure to clear your schedule for those!
- Official site: http://abc.go.com/shows/dancing-with-the-stars
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/dancingwiththestars
- Twitter: https://twitter.com/DancingABC #DWTS
Which Dancing with the Stars couple are you rooting for to win?
I was invited on an all-expense paid media trip as a guest of Disney and ABC in honor of the Big Hero 6 movie and mentioned sitcom series. All opinions are my own.