Love Strictly Come Dancing, but only because of the rumours about the contestants hooking up behind the scenes? Watch First Dates avidly, but wish they’d include more cutaways of the contestants breaking out some dance moves with Fred Sirieux?
Channel 4 might have the show for you. The broadcaster has announced a new five-part series starring choreographer Ashley Banjo with a working title of Flirty Dancing, which aims to bring prospective couples together through the magic of dance.
Describing the dance floor as once “the ultimate place to meet your other half” before technology put a “dent in old-fashioned romance,” the show’s makers plan to take two complete strangers and teach them one half of a fully choreographed dance routine each, before uniting the pair for a performance.
Apparently, the dance will be “cleverly tailored to illustrate their personalities and what they want from a prospective partner” (which sounds slightly bizarre) and set on location, with the pair forbidden from speaking as they just dance their way toward desire – or sore toes and a lonely cab ride home, presumably.
At the end, the couples (two sets per episode) will have to decide if they want to see their dance partners again or whether that was, ahem, their last dance. Banjo will be helping the neophyte toe-tappers through their routines every rhythmic step of the way, with the dancing duos matched using different dance styles that the programme suggests could be “a Waltz in Wolverhampton, a Tango in Tenby or even a street dance in Sheffield.”
“Dance exposes your true self – you can’t hide behind words or an outfit,” Banjo said of the new series.
“Back in the good old days, three quarters of people met their partners on a dance floor. I met my wife dancing; we really connected and got to know each other in dance class.
“There was a chemistry that I don’t think would have been created sitting across from each other at a table and just talking… I want to bring a bit of old-fashioned romance back to dating – the magic that can be created without a word being spoken.”
“Inspired by the evocative atmosphere of La La Land, we want to recapture the magic and romance of the dancehall days when you could be swept off your feet rather than being swept left or right,” added Factual Entertainment Commissioner Sarah Lazenby.
“We are delighted that Ashley Banjo is coming to Channel 4 with this warm and charming series that sees couples brought together through the art of dance.”
The series will have five episodes of one hour each, and who knows? If the Strictly Curse has taught us anything, there’s no aphrodisiac quite like strutting around in time to music.