Ian Burrell edits the Media Weekly pages of The Independent.
After the BBC "ageist" controversy surrounding Arlene Phillips being taken off the panel of Strictly Come Dancing at the age off 66 to be replaced by 30 year old Alesha Dixon, the former Hot Gossip choreographer is back on BBC1.
As reported exclusively by this blog last Friday, the BBC has bought the funky So You Think You Can Dance format which has been a big hit in America, where it's being made into a sixth series for Fox TV and is hosted by the British presenter Cat Deeley.
The BBC has today confirmed that auditions for the first British version of the show will begin next month and that Phillips will be on the judging panel alongside "Nasty" Nigel Lythgoe, who once worked with the television dance troupe Young Generation. Lythgoe makes the US show along with Simon Fuller, the TV impressario behind 19 Entertainment.
The move by BBC1 Controller Jay Hunt shows that dance formats are now seen as pivotal to a successful BBC Saturday night. So You Think You Can Dance is more about choreography than celebrity and more street than sequins. So Hunt will be hoping to bring in a younger audience than Bruce Forsyth and Tess Daly attract for Strictly.