In olden days it was an activity of Bangkok socialites who dug the imported Western glamour. Then it spread to the middle-class, and young people grew up hearing stories about their parents going out for a session of the foxtrot and cha-cha-cha at the legendary Lumphini Park dance auditorium. Lee lat _ as we call it _ ballroom dancing, quaint and somewhat theatrical, went out of fashion, but now it's poised to make an unlikely comeback. Like so many skills and talents, this one needs an addition of drama and televised voting to shore up new enthusiasm.
An ex-supermodel aims to bring it back. During her pregnancy, Metinee "Lukkade" Kingpayome became an ardent fan of Dancing with the Stars (DWTS) after watching the US version on YouTube. Enjoying it so much, she kept telling her husband, Edward Sharples, to find a way to bring the TV show to Thailand.
They have made it happen and a dazzling dance floor will open for the waltz, foxtrot and tango, every Tuesday night, from Jan 8, on Channel 7. The global hit ballroom and Latin dancing competition has drawn high ratings in 42 countries and the Thai version is expected to revive the craze for lee lat _ or at least to watch it on the tube."After singing contests, dance competitions came along and took over from them in many countries. There are a lot of dance TV shows, and DWTS is the first for Thailand, as an international format that has worked everywhere," said Sharples, who did Big Brother Thailand when he was Southeast Asia managing director of Endemol, a television production and distribution giant.
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