The BBC’s director-general has described Ed Balls’s involvement in Strictly Come Dancing, particularly his dance to Gangnam Style, as a “national moment”.
Lord Hall discussed the broadcaster’s mission in the “post-truth era” at the Voice of the Listener and Viewer autumn conference, and referenced the former shadow chancellor’s efforts on the dancefloor.
Ed danced to the hit track by South Korean artist Psy with his partner Katya Jones during the eighth week of Strictly.
In the midst of his speech, Lord Hall referred to the flagship BBC programme and its importance among the TV-watching nation.
He said: “I mentioned Strictly … It’s hard to argue that how well celebrities can dance is an important national issue.
“But you could certainly describe the former shadow chancellor doing the salsa on primetime, Gangnam Style, as something of a national moment.”
Lord Hall added that he is “proud” of the BBC for being able to “produce shows that bring the whole family together on Saturday and Sunday nights – and that still have the whole country talking at school or at work on Monday morning”.
Ed, 49, has become the unlikely star of the dancefloor this series as he has managed to evade the dreaded bottom two each weekend despite repeatedly coming bottom of the leaderboard.
He has made it into the final six in the competition thanks to the public’s support.