Charlottesville Dances With The Stars

By: Venton D. Blandin
By: Venton D. Blandin

July 6, 2005

Reality television was at its best tonight with a huge audience watching others doing everyday things.

Viewers wanting to dance like the stars were watching "Dancing With the Stars" with passion. It knocked a top show of a different network from it's most watched position for the summer.

"Every time I get a chance to get home [I watch it]--which I hope will be tonight too, because tonight is the finale, right," said Anita, who takes dance lessons at Shergold Studios in Charlottesville.

She along with millions of other Americans tune in to watch "Dancing With the Stars" every week.

"People are talking about the show. It's one of those things where people [ask] 'did you see it last night?'," added Anita.

The show pairing professional dancers with celebrities has become a surprise hit for the ABC network. Over 16 million viewers watch each week, it's the most watched summer show, since the "Survivor" debut in 2000. What's so appealing to the large audience?

"On that show, they can watch them not only start from scratch, but aspire to something much greater," said Steve Shergold, owner of Shergold Studios.

While trying to aspire to something much greater, viewers find themselves leaping into Shergold Studios for lessons, which obviously doesn't hurt the industry.

"They can only help this kind business, and this kind of thing to do because it puts it into the mainstream," added Shergold.

Viewers watching the show can see stars learn to dance, and some who can not; but, can the viewers dance?

"Yes, we're learning, and it's fun," said Ashok Ajgaonkar, also a beginning dancer at Shergold Studios.

"Dancing is really only moving to a beat, and stepping at the same time," said Erica Shergold, Co-owner of Shergold Studios.

With the show recently airing its finale, and people making strides in dancing, there's certainly personal improvement seen on the dance floor.

It's much more smooth, and a lot more variety, said Gita Ajgaonkar, a beginning dancer at Shergold Studios.

This show was not only watched by dancing fans, but by network executives, too. There is another dancing show scheduled to hit the air later this month on a different network, and one other being tossed around for a third network.

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