"Dancing with the Stars": Brooke Burke-Charvet on why the show works

Brooke Burke-Charvet arrives at Operation Smile's 30th Anniversary Smile Gala on Sept. 28, 2012, in Beverly Hills, Calif. Getty

It's hard to believe that "Dancing with the Stars" has been on the air since 2005 -- for a whopping 15 seasons. And with Season 16 set to kick off on Mach 16, buzz about the long-running ABC show and the latest batch of celebrity contenders is heating up.

The new contestants are an interesting bunch. There are quite a few athletic contestants, including two Olympians: gymnast Aly Raisman and figure skater Dorothy Hamill. Two country singers also made their way into the cast: Wyonna Judd and Kellie Pickler, who got her start on another reality show: "American Idol." So, there's clearly no shortage of potential celebrity contenders to quench viewers' thirsts.

"Dancing with the Stars" co-host Brooke Burke-Charvet recently told CBSNews.com why she thinks the celebrity competition is so successful.

"It's escapism. It's great entertainment for the whole family," she said. "I think we get to see celebrities uncensored. We see their true colors. It's so fun to see people step out of their comfort zones and do something they've never done before."

The TV host first appeared on Season 7 of the show, during which she was awarded the coveted mirrorball trophy.

"I really enjoy it. I enjoyed the experience on both sides -- dancing and hosting. It's just a feel-good show for everyone," she said.

The new season follows the first all-star version of "Dancing with the Stars," which aired last fall to lower ratings.

Shortly after the season wrapped, ABC Entertainment President Paul Lee hinted that it's unlikely execs would bring back favorite contestants again for another all-star show. "It turns out people like to see bad dancing as much as they like to see good dancing," Lee said.

The new "Dancing with the Stars" season begins with a two-hour premiere on March 18 on ABC.

Check out the full Season 16 cast below:

Olympic gymnast Aly Raisman with pro Mark Ballas

Olympic skater Dorothy Hamill with pro Tristan MacManus

Boxer Victor Ortiz with pro Lindsay Arnold

Country singer Kellie Pickler with pro Derek Hough

Country singer Wynonna Judd with pro Tony Dovolani

Soap star Ingo Rademacher with pro Kym Johnson

Disney Channel actress Zendaya Coleman with pro Valentin Chmerkovskiy

Comedian Andy Dick with pro Sharna Burgess

NFL player Jacoby Jones of the Baltimore Ravens with pro Karina Smirnoff

Reality star Lisa Vanderpump of "Real Housewives of Beverly Hills" with pro Gleb Savchenko

Comedian D.L. Hughley with pro Cheryl Burke

Comments