DwtS Extra: Scenes from a Show Taping (Part Two)

Imee DuBose, a friend of Cheryl Burke and webmaster of Cheryl’s official website, StrictlyCheryl.com, was in the audience for a recent Performance Show. Imee graciously agreed to write a couple articles about the experience.

In Part One, Imee told us what happens before and during the show. In this article, she gives us a glimpse of the after-show happenings.

The
wild applause that peaked during Tom and Samantha’s sign-off starts
to settle down. The celebrities and professional dancers disperse
across the dance floor and suddenly look relaxed, as their adrenalin
subsides to normal levels.

The cameras’ work is done for the
night, and their red on-the-air lights have switched off. Studio lights
turn on to bring us back from Reality TV to reality.

Ushers
direct most of the audience toward the studio exit doors. Some
attendees stay behind to provide the commentary that is included in
Wednesday’s Results Show. The families and friends of the dancers
converge on the dance floor, expressing congratulations on a job well
done.

Soon, an army of television news reporters (with their
cameras) and print media reporters (with their notepads) enter the
studio. Shanna Moakler is among them. She has gone from DwtS contestant to Entertainment Tonight correspondent.

As they do each week, the media take their assigned spaces on the dance
floor, behind a white, chain-linked rope. The dancing couples take their
place on the opposite side and are interviewed by one reporter after
another, moving down the line until they arrive back at the reporter
with whom they started.

In all, there are about twenty reporters
and cameras snapping away, and I can’t imagine answering the same
questions twenty times. “How do you think you did out there?” Monosyllabic answers are not allowed.

I can’t help but feel for
the female dancers, who must stand for all that time in their dancing
heels. It reminds me of the old adage: “Beauty before pain.” More power
to them, as they smile and interview for what probably seems like
forever.

As she waits to speak with the next reporter, I have a
chance to tell Kym Johnson — who is very nice and has a beautiful
smile — what great choreography she did for her Samba with Jerry
Springer.

VIPs with green bracelets are allowed access to The
Green Room (hence the color of the bracelet). Many start heading there
while the interviews are going on. It’s on the third floor of the
studio, and even though it’s called The Green Room, it’s not actually
green.

Tonight, I call it the “Green Salad Room,” because it is
a toss up of who is in here. Typically, the celebs and professional
dancers show up later, while their invited guests, the DwtS crew, and
those lucky enough to sneak past the security without a green bracelet,
get to eat and drink something. (Our audience participation started at
3 p.m. — four hours ago. Feed us!)

It’s Mario’s birthday
tonight, which influenced the food being served: taquitos, chips,
guacamole, and other south-of-the-border finger foods. The victuals go
quickly. By the time he gets back here, I’ll be surprised if there’s
any left for Mario.

The bar is well stocked with everything but
hard liquor, and the servers are kind and attentive. There are
barstools and tall, round tables, but all of them are occupied. There
are some big, comfortable looking couches, but those are taken, too.

One
of the great things about the Green Room is an opportunity to watch the
“six degrees of separation” theory at play. Everyone is very friendly
with one another — because we all know someone (or know someone who
knows someone) on the show, or we wouldn’t be in the room. We’re all
part of the extended DwtS family.

Cheryl
and Emmitt make their way into the room, alongside Carrie Ann Inaba.
It’s 8 o’clock: the beginning of prime time on the West Coast. The
three television sets in the Green Salad Room switch on, and we turn
our heads to watch the familiar DwtS opening. It’s the studio
audience’s turn to be the television audience!

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