"#DANCEBATTLE AMERICA," ABC'S NEW DANCE COMPETITION SPECIAL, PREMIERES MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 14
Julianne Hough and Maria Menounos to Executive Produce
Alfonso Ribeiro and Jordin Sparks to Co-Host
From Executive Producers Julianne Hough (Actress and "Dancing with the Stars" judge and two-time champion), Maria Menounos ("E! News" Host, "Dancing with the Stars" celebrity dancer) and Dan Cutforth and Jane Lipsitz of Magical Elves ("Project Greenlight," "Top Chef") comes ABC's dance special "#DanceBattle America," airing MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 14 (10:00-11:00 p.m., ET), following the premiere of "Dancing with the Stars" Season 21.
Hosted by Alfonso Ribeiro ("Americas Funniest Home Videos", "DWTS" Champion) and Jordin Sparks (Actress, Recording Artist, "American Idol" Winner), the hour-long network special was inspired by Hough and Menounos after the two engaged in a now famous dance battle via social media during the 2013 holiday season. The battle went viral and inspired other celebrities including Kate Hudson, Kristi Yamaguchi, Amber Riley and their families to join in the fun. Due to the huge popular response, Hough and Menounos challenged everyone in America to submit their own epic dance moves via social media for a chance to compete in "#DanceBattle America."
"I love that my family and friends coming together to challenge the Houghs on social media turned into a chance for America to dance!" said Menounos. "Ever since I left DWTS, I've always wanted to find a way to give others the magical experience I had. Watching the submissions for this show had me laughing, dancing or crying. It's so inspirational and uplifting."
"The number one question I get from fans is 'when are they going to make a Dancing with the Stars for the average Joe,' so the idea behind this is that these families, friends and co-workers get to come to L.A. to work with a choreographer and go through a small version of the transformation that the celebrities go through on DWTS" stated Hough.
After an incredible nationwide response, eight teams were chosen to battle it out in Los Angeles on September 14. The teams will go through a week of intense training with some of the country's best choreographers to create a routine for their chosen song. Each team will battle against another team in four rounds of competition. At the completion of the battle rounds, the winning team will be selected by the studio audience and will receive a trophy and prize.
"#DanceBattle America is a show that was borne out by the popularity of social media and its ability to showcase people in their everyday lives. Most of our contestants have no desire to become professional dancers, but they're taking this opportunity to show us their moves and remind us why we dance in the first place: because it's fun" said Lipsitz.
"#DanceBattle America" is Produced by Magical Elves with Dan Cutforth, Jane Lipsitz, Julianne Hough, Maria Menounos and James Sunderland serving as executive producers. Casey Kriley and Jo Sharon as co-executive producers.
About Alfonso Ribeiro
Alfonso Ribeiro is an actor, director, Broadway star and award-winning dancer. He is currently set to host the upcoming season of ABC's "America's Funniest Home Videos" this October. He is also the host of "Unwrapped 2.0" on the Food Network. Alfonso has played a multitude of roles on both the stage and screen, including the memorable character 'Carlton Banks' from the popular TV series "The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air," among many other roles. He is also an accomplished TV director and dancer, having won Season 19 of "Dancing with the Stars."
About Jordin Sparks
Jordin Sparks is a Grammy nominated multi-platinum global superstar who has sold over 11 million units since her career launch in 2007 when she won American Idol at the young age of 17. Jordin has also appeared in numerous films including starring alongside Whitney Houston in her final film "Sparkle" in addition to starring on Broadway. On August 21st, Sparks released her highly anticipated third studio album, RIGHT HERE RIGHT NOW, via Sony Music / 19 / Louder Than Life.
About Magical Elves
Magical Elves is the award winning production team behind some of the highest quality documentary and reality programming on television. Since the company was founded in 2001, Dan Cutforth and Jane Lipsitz have been nominated for numerous Emmys, culminating in a win in 2010 for Outstanding Reality Program or Competition for "Top Chef". Other credits include; "Last Comic Standing", "Fashion Star" (NBC), "Project Runway" (Bravo), "Cold Justice", "Step it up and Dance" (Bravo) "Dance on Sunset" (Nickelodeon), "Dance Your Ass Off" (Oxygen). Magical Elves joined forces with international media producer and distributor The Tinopolis Group in 2014.