• Publication date: May 14, 2010

8 Couples Battle for a Career in Dance A Search for England�s Baby & Johnny

The 80s delivered a string of dance-related films, notably �Flashdance� (1983) and �Dirty Dancing� (1987), starring Patrick Swayze. The later involved a well-to-do girl who sought erotic dance lessons from a blue-collar instructor; inevitably their hot maneuvers led to a romantic relationship.

The 80s delivered a string of dance-related films, notably �Flashdance� (1983) and �Dirty Dancing� (1987), starring Patrick Swayze. The later involved a well-to-do girl who sought erotic dance lessons from a blue-collar instructor; inevitably their hot maneuvers led to a romantic relationship. Swayze�s character, Johnny is miraculously able to transform his amateur love into a professional level performer � in only a matter of weeks. Naturally, as cinematic storytelling would dictate everyone lives happily ever after.

That is certainly not the case with the contestants in 2007�s UK reality show �Dirty Dancing: The Time of Your Life,� where 8 couples will compete to win a contract with an esteemed talent agency, and hopefully launch themselves into stardom. Initially the program�s intent was merely to commemorate the 20th anniversary of the 1987 film, however intense public interest in the program ensued, and a second season was completed in 2008.

After undergoing auditions in England, eight woman and eight men were flown to the American state of Virginia, where they stayed at the Mountain Lake Resort, the same location where Grey and Swayze strutted their stuff 20 years prior. �Dirty Dancing�s� assistant choreographer, Miranda Garrison is one of three judges who will vote yay or nay throughout the series, where each week two couples are eliminated. Since elements of the contest involve recreating key scenes from the 1987 picture, her input and mentoring is especially important.

At the beginning of each episode participants choose a partner; together, they will plan and rehearse a risqu� dance routine set to pop tunes, which are often selections from the �Dirty Dancing� soundtrack. Additionally, dancers will be assigned specific scenes to recreate from the film, such as the infamous water lift scene. When time permits, the cast will even perform menial labor for the resort.

With so many beautiful men and women in one place, romance is bound to occur � and it does, repeatedly, adding a personal dimension to the program. Tensions rise when a dancer injures her leg, and must quit the competition; this leaves one man void of a partner, and show producers frantically searching for a fair solution.