'Dancing with the Stars' returning with new ballroom set makeover
By Christopher Rocchio, 03/22/2010
Dancing with the Stars aficionados will apparently be greeted by a few changes when the show's tenth season premieres tonight on ABC.
"We brought the backstage room to the front of the stage, so rather than have the contestants hidden away during the show they will be with the audience, front and center, and much more a part of the show," executive producer Conrad Green toldPeople in a Monday report.
The celebrity participants and their professional partners will be onstage thanks to the show's "red room" being placed inside the ballroom and enclosed by glass walls.
The ballroom will also include a balcony and railing where the cast can watch performances live instead of on a monitor, according to People, which added new co-host Brooke Burke will interview contestants from the new area.
In addition to a new set, Green said the tenth season will also feature theme nights -- including one featuring songs by John Lennon and Paul McCartney.
However not all the twists are new, as the "Dance Off" -- in which couples' with the second and third lowest combination of judges' scores and home viewer votes compete during the live results show before the judges determine their fate -- will also return for the tenth season.
Green told People that the "Dance Off" will make its return when "the talent level tends to be pretty solid."
"That's when it's nice to give people one more chance, especially if they had a performance that wasn't particularly solid. People have one last shot to redeem themselves," he told People.
Green also gushed about the 11 tenth-season couples, claiming they'll make the show "television you have to watch."
"You want to have an opinion in the morning. It will be live TV at its best," he told People, and two-time professional champ Cheryl Burke agreed.
"Everyone this season has great talent and great potential," Burke -- who is paired with NFL star Chad Ochocinco -- told People.
"We've got a vibrant cast... everyone is known and has their own fan base."
Following tonight's debut, all 11 tenth-season couples will return for another two-hour performance show next Monday at 8PM ET/PT. Home viewers will be able to vote following each episode.
The first live tenth-season results show will then air the following night on March 30, with one couple being eliminated based on a combination of the judges' scores and home viewer votes from both performance episodes.