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Putting a Non-Star on Dancing with the Stars

In the many years since I first created Pure DWTS, there is one message I get on the Pure DWTS “Contact Us” form (Note: Many people confuse us as the show or the producers of the show even though it clearly states that we’re not either and have no affiliation with the show) than any other. That message is that some “normal” person (That’s the term they usually use, not me) would like to be on the show even though they’re not a star. It often is stated as a groundbreaking idea and includes some story of why being able to be on the show would be an extraordinary thing for that person.

Here’s a sample of one from Mandi that she said I could share. It illustrates how passionate and excited people are just thinking about what it would be like to be a contestant on DWTS.

Hi my name is Mandi I am from Louisiana. I am a huge fan of the show and the thought of sending this is the most terrifying and exciting thing I’ve ever done, I know I am taking a HUGE shot in the dark and no one will probably ever read this but here goes. I am a person who never takes chances because of fear, but not today, today I’ll be brave and take a chance! I have watched the show over the years and I’ve noticed over the past couple of seasons that DWTS has taken some amazing chances in putting people on the show that may not be your typical dancer or “star” for that matter and turning them into amazing dancers while helping them grow as people. I am not a star by any means, most of my days are spent in carpool and running around after my two rambunctious boys 😉 I figure that if your pros can teach an army veteran with one arm and leg to dance or a completely deaf person can win the mirror ball or even a little person who has the cards stacked against her to succeed in this kind of competition then they can certainly teach a regular ordinary stay at home mom to dance.

August 2016 was a month I’ll never forget! As I stood in my living room with the water rising in my home I felt like I was in a dream, everything my husband worked so hard to give us was about to be destroyed and there wasn’t anything he or I could do about it. We climbed out of my youngest son’s bedroom window into our fishing boat and drove around our neighborhood in total shock, we couldn’t believe what was happening it was all too much! If I have learned anything through this it’s that my life can change in a second! Don’t waste time! So this is my step of faith, I want to be on dancing with the stars to prove that anyone can overcome whatever is happening in theirs lives and to prove to myself that I can do anything I put my mind to! It’s so easy to get lost in life, feeling like “just a mom” or “just a wife” especially being a stay at home mom like me and not getting that gratification from your job or the social interaction with someone other than a 5 year old 🙂 Like I said before I don’t even know if anyone will read this but had to try!

Louisiana Strong!!

(Note: I love that Mandi took this risk even if it was to us and not the producers of the show. I hope she keeps taking risks.)

Why This Is A Longshot
Let’s all be honest. Most of us “normal” people would love to be on the show. How incredible would it be to have an opportunity to learn from all of the incredible pros on the show? For most people in the world, it would be the experience of a lifetime. I also think it’s unlikely to happen and that’s too bad.

I say that it’s unlikely because it would cause some serious challenges for the producers of the show. First, the show is literally called Dancing with the Stars. If they bring someone who isn’t a star, then it kind of goes against the whole premise of the show.

Plus, would anyone be surprised if some of the stars that are selected for the show might be upset if the cast wasn’t full of stars? I could see some of the arrogant ones getting really pissed if a show called Dancing with the Stars included a contestant that wasn’t a star. As if some of these B, C, D … list stars are really a huge draw for the show themselves, but I digress. I could see some stars egos having a problem with a non-star being on the show. That’s not something the producers likely want to deal when casting the show.

I think the show also benefits from many of the stars bringing their fan base to the show which can help ratings. Of course, a normal person wouldn’t bring a fan base that would do anything for ratings. Although, it would be quite a story that many media outlets would want to cover if the show to put a normal person in the cast.

How It Could Work
While I think it’s unlikely that they’ll put a regular person on DWTS, that doesn’t mean that they shouldn’t do it. I don’t think you’d want to do it every season, but to do it for one season could be a tremendous boost for the show. So many people would be interested in how this regular person did on the show.

We already saw this once. Alek Skarlatos was about as non-star as you can find. Notice that I didn’t call him a regular person. He’s an extraordinary person, but before the show very few people knew him. They knew of his act of heroism, but they really didn’t know him. It’s not like he brought a big fan base to the show. The analogy isn’t perfect since so many people in the US are fans of the military and heroism. However, Alek is the closest to a “normal” person being on the show that they’ve come and he did tremendously well.

I think if DWTS did want to include a normal person, they’d just need to create a process where the person who gets selected to do the show essentially becomes a star in the process. It’s a pretty amazing concept if you think about it. If you create some sort of contest and exposure for the people in the running to be on the show, you could access the stories of millions of ordinary people and out of that contest could create a star. At least as much of a star as Alek or any of The Bachelors.

Can’t you just see the 10 finalists on GMA telling their story of why they want to be on DWTS? It could get really cheesy if they’re not careful, but it could also be incredible TV with everyday heroes like Mandi above who spends her days in carpool and raising 2 kids.

One of the amazing things that reality TV like Survivor, Amazing Race, and even shows like America’s Got Talent, American Idol, etc have tapped into is that those watching at home can sit back and dream about being on the show themselves. There’s an incredible power in that which makes watching the show even better for the viewer. Having a regular person on DWTS would do the same for the show.

Like I said, I’ll be surprised if the show actually did this, but I also think it would be a great thing if they did. Can you imagine how many people would apply to be on the show if they opened one slot up for a non-star? I know a blogger that would be interested. I won’t even be picky about which pro I get, but if they want feedback I think Edyta or Emma would be best for me 😉

Until then, at least I now can point people to this post when they send me their “great idea” of having a regular person be on DWTS.

November 23, 2016 I Written By

Better known as Charlie.

Private Members Area – DWTS Season 23 Season Week 11 (Finals) Discussion

It’s time again for Dancing with the Stars chatter! You know the deal. Share your thoughts and insights on this week’s episode of Dancing with the Stars. If you’re not a Pure DWTS Insider yet, you can do so here. If you are, then I look forward to the discussion in the comments.
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November 21, 2016 I Written By

Better known as Charlie.

Dancing with the Stars Season 23 Week 8-10 Music

As usual, it’s been crazy around here. So, I’ll catch up with DWTS Season 23’s week 8, 9, and 10 music below. Be sure to check out our full list of Dancing with the Stars music throughout the season. Here we go:

DWTS Season 23 Week 8 Music:
Terra & Sasha danced a Cha-cha-cha to the song “Day-O (The Banana Boat Song)”—Harry Belafonte
Laurie & Val danced a Viennese Waltz to the song “Pure Imagination”—Jane Monheit
Marilu & Derek danced a Argentine tango to the song “Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This)”—Emily Browning
Calvin & Lindsay danced a Quickstep to the song “Dr. Bones”—Cherry Poppin’ Daddies
Ryan & Cheryl danced a Tango to the song “Howlin’ for You”—The Black Keys
Jana & Gleb danced a Jazz to the song “Little Shop of Horrors”—Alan Menken
James & Jenna danced a Viennese Waltz to the song “You Don’t Own Me”—Grace feat. G-Eazy
Laurie & Val and Calvin & Lindsay danced a Jive to the song “The Purple People Eater”—Sheb Wooley
Jana & Gleb and Terra & Sasha danced a Salsa to the song “Magic”—Robin Thicke
Ryan & Cheryl and Marilu & Derek danced a Cha-cha-cha to the song “Can’t Feel My Face”—The Weeknd

DWTS Season 23 Week 9 Music:
Marilu & Derek danced a Samba to the song “December, 1963 (Oh, What a Night)”—The Four Seasons
Calvin & Lindsay danced a Waltz to the song “Memory”—Andrew Lloyd Webber
James & Jenna danced a Jazz to the song “A Brand New Day”—Luther Vandross
Terra & Sasha danced a Charleston to the song “If My Friends Could See Me Now”—Cy Coleman
Jana & Gleb danced a Waltz to the song “She Used to Be Mine”—Sara Bareilles
Laurie & Val danced a Argentine tango to the song “Cell Block Tango”—Kander and Ebb
James & Jenna and Calvin & Lindsay danced a Paso doble to the song “No Good”—Kaleo
Marilu & Derek and Terra & Sasha danced a Jazz to the song “Big Noise from Winnetka”—Bette Midler
Laurie & Val and Jana & Gleb danced a Contemporary to the song “Bird Set Free”—Sia

DWTS Season 23 Week 10 Music:
James & Sharna danced a Argentine tango to the song “Santa María (del Buen Ayre)”—Gotan Project
James & Sharna danced a Jive to the song “Gimme Some Lovin'”—The Spencer Davis Group
Terra & Sasha danced a Rumba to the song “Scars to Your Beautiful”—Alessia Cara
Terra & Sasha danced a Tango to the song “Hideaway”—Kiesza
Jana & Gleb danced a Quickstep to the song “Go Mama”—Wayne Beckford
Jana & Gleb danced a Paso doble to the song “Kill of the Night”—Gin Wigmore
Calvin & Lindsay danced a Tango to the song “Seven Nation Army”—The White Stripes
Calvin & Lindsay danced a Salsa to the song “Limbo”—Daddy Yankee
Laurie & Val danced a Foxtrot to the song “Hollow”—Tori Kelly
Laurie & Val danced a Samba to the song “Magalenha”—Sérgio Mendes feat. Carlinhos Brown

November 19, 2016 I Written By

Better known as Charlie.

Private Members Area – DWTS Season 23 Season Week 10 Discussion

It’s time again for Dancing with the Stars chatter! You know the deal. Share your thoughts and insights on this week’s episode of Dancing with the Stars. If you’re not a Pure DWTS Insider yet, you can do so here. If you are, then I look forward to the discussion in the comments.
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November 14, 2016 I Written By

Better known as Charlie.

Private Members Area – DWTS Season 23 Season Week 9 Discussion

It’s time again for Dancing with the Stars chatter! You know the deal. Share your thoughts and insights on this week’s episode of Dancing with the Stars. If you’re not a Pure DWTS Insider yet, you can do so here. If you are, then I look forward to the discussion in the comments.
Read more..

November 8, 2016 I Written By

Better known as Charlie.

Private Members Area – DWTS Season 23 Season Week 8 Discussion

It’s time again for Dancing with the Stars chatter! You know the deal. Share your thoughts and insights on this week’s episode of Dancing with the Stars. If you’re not a Pure DWTS Insider yet, you can do so here. If you are, then I look forward to the discussion in the comments.
Read more..

October 31, 2016 I Written By

Better known as Charlie.

Dancing with the Stars Season 23 Week 6-7 Music

I was traveling last week and not able to post the music. So, I’ll catch up with DWTS Season 23’s week 6 and 7 music below. Be sure to check out our full list of Dancing with the Stars music throughout the season. Here we go:

DWTS Season 23 Week 6 Music:
Ryan & Cheryl danced a Salsa to the song “La Negra Tiene Tumbao”—Celia Cruz
Terra & Sasha danced a Paso doble to the song “Don’t Let Me Be Misunderstood”—Santa Esmeralda
Amber & Maks danced a Cha-cha-cha to the song “Bla Bla Bla Cha Cha Cha”—Petty Booka
James & Sharna danced a Rumba to the song “Need the Sun to Break”—James Bay
Marilu & Derek danced a Cha-cha-cha to the song “Echa pa’lante”—Thalía
Jana & Gleb danced a Argentine tango to the song “Hands to Myself”—Selena Gomez
Maureen & Artem danced a Samba to the song “Mas que Nada”—Sérgio Mendes feat. The Black Eyed Peas
Calvin & Lindsay danced a Argentine tango to the song “Hotel California”—Eagles
Laurie & Val danced a Salsa to the song “Light It Up”—Major Lazer feat. Nyla & Fuse ODG

DWTS Season 23 Week 7 Music:
Laurie & Val danced a Quickstep to the song “One Fine Day”—The Chiffons
Ryan & Cheryl danced a Rumba to the song “I Don’t Want to Miss a Thing”—Aerosmith
Marilu & Derek danced a Charleston to the song “Never Forget You”—Postmodern Jukebox feat. Addie Hamilton
Calvin & Lindsay danced a Jive to the song “Good Golly, Miss Molly”—Little Richard
Maureen & Artem danced a Tango to the song “You Give Love a Bad Name”—Bon Jovi
Terra & Sasha danced a Foxtrot to the song “Cheek to Cheek”—Ella Fitzgerald & Louis Armstrong
Jana & Gleb danced a Samba to the song “Get Down Tonight”—KC and the Sunshine Band
James & Sharna danced a Jitterbug to the song “In the Mood”—Glenn Miller to the song
Team Past danced a Freestyle to the song “The Skye Boat Song”—Raya Yarbrough
Team Future danced a Freestyle to the song “Embrace”—Armin van Buuren feat. Eric Vloeimans

October 24, 2016 I Written By

Better known as Charlie.

Private Members Area – DWTS Season 23 Season Week 7 Discussion

It’s time again for Dancing with the Stars chatter! You know the deal. Share your thoughts and insights on this week’s episode of Dancing with the Stars. If you’re not a Pure DWTS Insider yet, you can do so here. If you are, then I look forward to the discussion in the comments.
Read more..

I Written By

Better known as Charlie.

Private Members Area – DWTS Season 23 Season Week 6 Discussion

It’s time again for Dancing with the Stars chatter! You know the deal. Share your thoughts and insights on this week’s episode of Dancing with the Stars. If you’re not a Pure DWTS Insider yet, you can do so here. If you are, then I look forward to the discussion in the comments.
Read more..

October 17, 2016 I Written By

Better known as Charlie.

Dancing with the Stars Season 23 Week 1-5 Music

I use to list all the music. Then, we were getting all the music before the show. Now we’re not. So, I’m back to posting the music since some people have been asking for it. I hope you enjoy the list. Be sure to check out our full list of Dancing with the Stars music throughout the season. Here we go:

DWTS Season 23 Week 1 Music:
Marilu & Derek danced a Jive to the song “Can’t Stop Dancin'”—Captain & Tennille
James & Sharna danced a Foxtrot to the song “Live Life”—Zayde Wølf
Calvin & Lindsay danced a Cha-cha-cha to the song “That’s What I Like”—Flo Rida feat. Fitz
Maureen & Artem danced a Viennese Waltz to the song “(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman”—Mary J. Blige
Babyface & Allison danced a Foxtrot to the song “‘Deed I Do”—Ray Charles
Amber & Maks danced a Foxtrot to the song “Here”—Alessia Cara
Vanilla Ice & Witney danced a Cha-cha-cha to the song “Ice Ice Baby”—Vanilla Ice
Jana & Gleb danced a Viennese Waltz to the song “Dangerous Woman”—Ariana Grande
Jake & Jenna danced a Jive to the song “Kiss You”—One Direction
Rick & Emma danced a Cha-cha-cha to the song “God Blessed Texas”—Little Texas
Terra & Sasha danced a Jive to the song “Stuff Like That There”—Betty Hutton
Ryan & Cheryl danced a Foxtrot to the song “Call Me Irresponsible”—Michael Bublé
Laurie & Val danced a Cha-cha-cha to the song “American Girl”—Bonnie McKee

DWTS Season 23 Week 2 Music:
Maureen & Artem danced a Quickstep to the song “The Brady Bunch”—Peppermint Trolley Company
Jana & Gleb danced a Tango to the song “I Don’t Want to Be”—Gavin DeGraw
Rick & Emma danced a Quickstep to the song “Green Acres Theme”—Vic Mizzy
Calvin & Lindsay danced a Foxtrot to the song “As Days Go By”—Jesse Frederick
Amber & Maks danced a Viennese Waltz to the song “Game of Thrones Theme”—Ramin Djawadi
Jake & Jenna danced a Cha-cha-cha to the song “Go, Diego, Go! Theme”
Vanilla Ice & Witney danced a Foxtrot to the song “Love and Marriage”—Frank Sinatra
Terra & Sasha danced a Quickstep to the song “Bewitched Theme”—Howard Greenfield & Jack Keller
Babyface & Allison danced an Argentine tango to the song “The X-Files”—Mark Snow
Laurie & Val danced a Jive to the song “DuckTales”—Mark Mueller
James & Sharna danced a Paso doble to the song “The Walking Dead Theme”—Bear McCreary
Marilu & Derek danced a Foxtrot to the song “Angela”—Bob James
Ryan & Cheryl danced a Quickstep to the song “The Muppet Show Theme”—Jim Henson & Sam Pottle

DWTS Season 23 Week 3 Music:
Babyface & Allison danced a Jive to the song “Great Gosh A’Mighty”—Little Richard
Jana & Gleb danced a Jive to the song “Too Many Fish in the Sea”—Bette Midler
Rick & Emma danced a Paso doble to the song “Tamacun”—Rodrigo y Gabriela
Vanilla Ice & Witney danced a Paso doble to the song “Save Tonight”—Zayde Wølf
James & Sharna danced a Cha-cha-cha to the song “Big Trouble”—Outasight
Ryan & Cheryl danced a Cha-cha-cha to the song “If It Ain’t Love”—Jason Derulo
Terra & Sasha danced a Viennese Waltz to the song “Iris”—Goo Goo Dolls
Calvin & Lindsay danced a Viennese Waltz to the song “Woman’s World”—BJ the Chicago Kid
Amber & Maks danced a Salsa to the song “Booty”—Jennifer Lopez feat. Iggy Azalea
Maureen & Artem danced a Salsa to the song “Tres Deseos”—Gloria Estefan
Laurie & Val danced a Tango to the song “Into the Sunset”—Crystal Lake feat. Kifi
Marilu & Derek danced a Tango to the song “Battle Cry”—Imagine Dragons

DWTS Season 23 Week 4 Music:
Calvin & Lindsay danced a Charleston to the song “Bella Donna Twist”—Raphaël Beau
Maureen & Artem danced an Argentine tango to the song “High Bar”—Benoît Jutras
Jana & Gleb danced a Foxtrot to the song “Here Comes the Sun”—The Beatles
Marilu & Derek danced a Paso doble to the song “Battlefield”—René Dupéré
Amber & Maks danced an Argentine tango to the song “Tickle Tango”—Simon Carpentier
Ryan & Cheryl danced a Viennese Waltz to the song “Jeux d’Eau”—Benoît Jutras
Babyface & Allison danced a Tango to the song “Come Together”—The Beatles
Terra & Sasha danced a Samba to the song “Simcha”—Benoît Jutras
Laurie & Val danced a Jazz to the song “The Way You Make Me Feel”—Michael Jackson
Vanilla Ice & Witney danced a Viennese Waltz to the song “La Nouba”—Benoît Jutras
James & Sharna danced a Quickstep to the song “The Hollywood Wiz”—Guy Dubuc & Marc Lessard

DWTS Season 23 Week 5 Music:
Maureen & Artem danced a Foxtrot to the song “From the Ground Up”—Dan + Shay
Calvin & Lindsay danced a Jazz to the song “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough”—Marvin Gaye & Tammi Terrell
Jana & Gleb danced a Contemporary to the song “In My Daughter’s Eyes”—Martina McBride
Ryan & Cheryl danced a Contemporary to the song “A Song for You”—Leon Russell
Laurie & Val danced a Paso doble to the song “Rise”—Katy Perry
Marilu & Derek danced a Viennese Waltz to the song “Surprise Yourself”—Jack Garratt
Amber & Maks danced a Samba to the song “Woman Up”—Meghan Trainor
James & Sharna danced a Tango to the song “The Right Time”—Yves V feat. Mike James
Terra & Sasha danced a Contemporary to the song “Stand by Me”—Florence + The Machine

October 10, 2016 I Written By

Better known as Charlie.