I have always loved watching shows devoted to dancing! Who didn’t love American Bandstand! A Saturday dancing feast on a platter hosted by the incomparable Dick Clark. There was a show called Dance Party on WGAL-TV, Lancaster, PA. High school students could be on the show and dance an afternoon away. My high school was privileged to be one of those schools. Variety shows of the past were Must-See TV, including Hullabaloo, Shindig, another Dick Clark production Where the Action Is, etc. I used to watch ballroom dancing shows on PBS. There is actually a show coming to PBS on April 24 called America’s Ballroom Challenge.
The one that resonates the most was The Lawrence Welk Show. My Grandma and Mother loved the show and I watched along with them. Recently I watched some of the shows on YouTube. I sometimes tune in to the re-runs on PBS. The primary, most well-known dancer on the show was Bobby Burgess. That is a familiar last name in the dancing world, of course Sharna, too. Bobby was paired with three ladies on the show, Barbara Boylan, Cissy King, and Elaine Balden. Bobby and Elaine are still active in the Welk tour shows.
The ballroom dances of the past are the same as what we see on Dancing With The Stars. Burgess and his partners did all of them. It is amazing to see how the past and present connect. Burgess, at age 73, is still very much active in the world of dance. He has been dancing since the age of four. He was also part of The Mickey Mouse Club. Read more..