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Every year as the Summer draws to a close, the leaves start to change and the weather cools down, we can't help but feel the buzz of excitement which means that Strictly Come Dancing is just around the corner. 

However, with COVID-19 restrictions and social-distancing guidelines in place, what will that mean for our beloved celebs, destined to learn the art of dance? According to The Sun, quite a few new changes are going to be made in order to ensure that the show is following all of the recommended guidelines.

One of the more obvious changes, and one we're sadly used to seeing on late-night-talk-shows, is that there will be no studio audience. They're also planning on reducing the crew and security, scaling back to only 25% of their usual team. This means that contestants will have to waltz, jive and tango to a relatively empty room, a complete shift from the rounds of applause and standing ovations they would have experienced in previous years. 

Another part of the show being scrapped is the sultry chemistry circle, which helps show producers decide which celebs look best with which professional. This is now being decided purely on height. There is also the question of group numbers, and how will they work given the circumstances, if at all.

The contestants aren't the only ones who will have to go without though. Our Strictly judges, Shirley Ballas, Craig Revel Horwood, Motsi Mabuse and Bruno Tonioli will have to forgo their entourage, including the likes of makeup and hair stylists, managers, and friends and family, in order to keep the number of people on set at an absolute minimum.  

However, not all hope is lost. Professional Strictly Come Dancing dancer, Janette Manrara commented on the situation when she spoke to The Sun. "They have been looking at a lot of Dancing With The Stars around the world to see how they have been doing it and how they got on. Motsi was telling me how the show functioned in Germany, with everyone wearing masks and gloves and there was no audience," she said.

"You can teach someone steps, you can teach someone side-by-side routines and not have to touch someone, so there is always that possibility. And masks — let’s do a beautiful rumba with a sparkly mask on. We could make it a fashion thing. We all just want the show to go on," she continued.

Even though the specifics of what the show will look like are still largely up in the air, at least we can sleep soundly knowing that some version of the show will go ahead, especially as Claudia and Tess have already started filming.


Strictly Come Dancing fans were left heartbroken when Will Bayley and Janette Manrara confirmed their departure from the show. The paralympian has been forced to quit the show due to an injury he sustained in rehearsals last week.

The dancing duo appeared on It Takes Two to reveal the devastating news.

Both Will and Janette couldn’t help but express their heartache over their early exit from the show.


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The World Table Tennis Paralympic champion looked completely heartbroken to be leaving the show.

Will said, “To me, it meant more than just a show. I wanted to try and help people as well." The 31-year-old has undoubtedly inspired many with his performances, including his partner Janette who had nothing but praise for him.


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The professional dancer wrote, “I had to post this photo again because it represents everything that I feel right now. @willbayleytt will always be my champion!”

“He came on this show to share a very special message and every single week through his hard work and determination he did exactly that.”


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She continued, “In my eyes, that is truly winning! You inspired so many and most of all me! Thank you for being so incredible every week and giving your absolute EVERYTHING! I’m sending all the positive energy your way now for a speedy recovery. And a HUGE thank you to everyone that has supported us and sent such lovely messages! I love you Will, & forever and always….. #WeGotThisChamp” Janette concluded.

We are gutted to see Will and Janette leave the competition so soon.


Almost every couple on Strictly Come Dancing are forced to face rumours in some way, shape or form.

The show has only been on air for a handful of weeks but people are already gossiping about which couples have paired up off the dance floor.

AJ Pritchard and Saffron Barker are one of the couples who have been hit with romance rumours, but the professional dancer swiftly shut them down in an interview with OK! Magazine.


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AJ, who has been dating fellow dancer Abbie since the summer, said: “Everyone wants to know about my relationship status, but I'm very happy with Abbie.

"You know you're going to be asked certain questions, even when you say you don't want to answer. When it comes to that sort of thing it doesn't really bother me because I know who I am, so does Abbie,” he explained.

Abbie said that some of the routines can look intimate, but since she’s a professional dancer, she completely understands that it is just work for her beau.


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Abbie even hopes Saffron stays in touch with AJ: "I hope AJ stays friends with her, and I get to know her more. They're so good together.

"As I'm a dancer, too, I understand that things can look a bit dodgy – I have to dance with guys all the time as well."


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AJ and Saffron topped the judges leaderboard this weekend and are becoming firm favourites with the public. The dancer praised Saffron’s hard work, "Saffron is a great partner – so hard working and a genuine fan of Strictly. This is probably my favourite year on the show."


Kelvin Fletcher may have been the last minute replacement on Strictly Come Dancing but the former Emmerdale star has swiftly become one of the top contenders for this year’s glitter ball trophy.

Viewers were stunned by his saucy Samba and mesmerised by his wonderful Waltz in the first two episodes and now we can look forward to the dad’s cheeky Charleston.

Kelvin and his dance partner, Oti Mabuse have been rehearsing their new routine all week but the dad enlisted the help of one very adorable family member and the video is bound to melt your heart.

Proving that he has been squeezing dance practice into every second of the day, the dad danced around with his adorable son Milo in his arms.


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Kelvin and his baby boy pranced around their kitchen to the Mary Poppins Returns soundtrack and they really do make the cutest duo.

Watch out, Oti!

The actor wrote, “Little Milo has been helping me with rehearsals for this weekend’s #MarryPoppinsReturns Charleston!


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“This soundtrack and this song especially has been on loop in our house for the last few months since taking Marnie to the cinema (her first cinema trip) to watch it. So I’ll be doing my best and making sure I don’t disappoint!” the dad-of-two added.

Kelvin couldn’t help but gush about the Strictly experience, “I’m absolutely LOVING this #strictly experience I feel so lucky.”


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It looks like little Milo is enjoying the Strictly experience just as much as his dad is. 

Kelvin and Oti will perform a Charleston to Trip A Little Light Fantasti' by Lin-Manuel Miranda.


Kevin Clifton isn't holding his opinions back about his Strictly Come Dancing co-star AJ Pritchard, suggesting that the fellow professional dancer tried to steal Stacey Dooley for himself last year.

Appearing on a one-off Strictly special, which will air on Saturday night, Kevin speaks about the process of the dancers and contestants testing their compatibility with a 'speed dance'.

The dance features the celebrities and professionals dance briefly with each other, before they're placed in their various partnerships.


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According to The Sun, Kevin claims he was ‘going for it’ with Stacey while they were dancing in a salsa circle, but AJ later swooped in and tried to pull Stacey away for a one-on-one talk.

"Last year with Stacey in the salsa circle, I was going for it… overdoing it," Kevin says.

"At one point, we were on a coffee break and AJ interrupted us in the middle of us talking and took her away," he added. "He wanted to get to know her and see what she was about."


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"I was like, “It’s not Love Island mate!”‘ Kevin managed to fend off AJ's advances and he was picked to be Stacey's partner for last years show.

The duo went on to win the Glitterball trophy, before confirming their romance three months later following Stacey's split from ex-boyfriend Sam Tucknott.

The pair insist on remaining tight-lipped about their private life.


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In an interview with The Guardian, Stacey said:

"Kev and I agreed not to go into too much detail about our private lives because you can’t really indulge that and then ask for privacy. What I am happy to say is Kev’s amazing. I’m happy, life happens. I’ve got an amazing career and I’m very lucky."

Kevin is partnered with Anneka Rice on this year's Strictly, but was recently forced to deny claims that he’s "fuming" with the pairing and insisted he’s having a "wicked time" with Anneka in rehearsals.

Feature image: Instagram/@strictlycomesaffron/@aj_pritchard.fans


Strictly Come Dancing winner Kevin Clifton is apparently 'fuming' over his partnership with 60-year-old TV veteran Anneka Rice, according to The Sun.

Show insiders claim that the Grimsby-born dancer sees his celebrity dance pairing as a 'punishment' from BBC bosses for his relationship with Stacey Dooley.

Kevin and now-girlfriend Stacey had chemistry to burn last year, going on to win the entire competition in December before going public with their romance in March.


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Stacey had been in a long-term relationship while she was competing on the show, and both herself and Kevin deny that any romance sparked before they took home the Glitterball trophy.

36-year-old Kevin believes bosses are 'putting the boot in' for the media furore following their romance and says they've 'sabotaged his dream' of winning wo years in a row, a source told The Sun;

"Kevin has told pals he would have preferred someone like Catherine Tyldesley or Alex Scott. He calls himself King Kevin and wanted to make Strictly history by winning back to back titles."


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They added; "But although Anneka is willing, her age and agility means he won’t be able to throw her around like he did previous partners."

Kevin and Anneka paired up on Saturday's launch, and The Challenge star admitted that she's never danced in public and was ruled out of a group dance after injuring herself during rehearsal.

The noticeable height difference between them was also commented on by viewers.


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Kevin has a great track record on the massively popular BBC dance contest, making the finals with every partner except Susan Calman.

Himself and Susanna Reid came in second during their time on the show, followed by Frankie Bridge, Kellie Bright and runner-up Louise Redknapp.

Kevin came in seventh place when partnered with comedian Susan two years ago, before winning the show with Stacey Dooley in 2018.

Feature image: Instagram/@editingstrictly


Strictly Come Dancing professional Kevin Clifton has revealed that he used alcohol to cope with his break-up from Karen Hauer, and received help from none other than Russell Brand.

The 36-year-old relied on Brand for support when he realised that his drinking had gone too far after he split from the fellow dancer last year.

Speaking on his podcast The Kevin Clifton Show, he said:

"I didn't know how to deal with it. It was affecting my work, it was affecting mine and Karen's relationship. I didn't know how to function as a person."


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"It's as close as I can imagine to what might be like depression. I fell into a real tough spot. I started drinking a lot. I was going out and drinking all the time.

"I talked to some of the people on Strictly about it," he added. "I was constantly stressed out, constantly emotional, constantly sad. It got to a point, and then me and Karen ended up breaking up."

Russell has battled numerous addictions from alcohol to drugs, and reached out to Kevin when he saw he had a problem, advising him to quit booze for two months.


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Since quitting alcohol, Kevin's life has improved drastically and he's found happiness with Stacey Dooley after the pair met on Strictly, winning the 2018 series together.

He said on his podcast: "My life over the past year has gone from darkness, despair and self hatred to everything going so much better.

"I'm so much happier now than I was a year ago." Kevin and Karen got married in 2015 but split up only three years later.

Feature image: Instagram/@davenelsonphotographer


Strictly Come Dancing has announced their sixth contestant and we are thrilled to see BBC Breakfast’s Mike Bushell will be strutting his stuff on the dancefloor this September.

Mike joins footballer David James, comedian Chris Ramsey, actress Emma Barton, YouTuber Saffron Barker and actress Catherine Tyldesley.

The presenter said he is ready for a new challenge, “I am so excited to be joining this year’s Strictly Come Dancing. I’ve heard so many wonderful things from colleagues over the years so thrilled I’m now getting the chance.

“I know I will completely throw myself into the whole experience and I’m sure I will love it from start to finish,” said Mike.

The BBC Breakfast host added, “I may have tried and profiled over 500 sports over the years in my Saturday morning BBC Breakfast slot but I think the Strictly challenge could be the greatest. Bring on the glitter.”

Mike has profiled some of the biggest sporting events in recent years including the Commonwealth Games, Asian Games, Football World Cups, the Olympics and the Paralympics.

We certainly can’t wait to see him tackle the tango and cha cha cha on Strictly this September.

Keep your eyes peeled for more Strictly news later today.


The fifth Strictly Come Dancing contestant has been revealed and we are very impressed. Coronation Street actress Catherine Tyldesley is the latest celebrity to join the dance show.

The actress is best known for playing Eva Price on the ITV soap from 2011 to 2018.

Catherine joins comedian Chris Ramsey, footballer David James, actress Emma Barton and social media star Saffron Barker.


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The actress gushed about her news, “I’m thrilled to be a part of this year’s Strictly Come Dancing. I’m a huge fan of the show. It’ll be my biggest challenge to date as I’m not much of a dancer, but I’ve always wanted to learn the skill and the time feels right!”

The 15 Days star added, “I’m nervous as hell but super excited to work with such talented professionals. Hold onto your jazz shoes… mine is sure to be a bumpy/clumsy/fun ride!”

This year’s lineup is already one of the show’s best and we only know five names.

Keep your eyes peeled for more announcements from Strictly in the coming days.


Strictly Come Dancing has finally started to reveal the 2019 lineup and we are loving it so far.

The dance show is set to return this autumn and have put together one of their best celebrity casts of all time.

EastEnders actress Emma Barton, best known for playing Honey Mitchell, will take to the Strictly dance floor this September.

Comedian Chris Ramsey and England footballer David James were also announced on The One Show last night.


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Social media star Saffron Barker was also confirmed this morning. Following in the footsteps of Joe Sugg, the YouTube phenomenon revealed she feels like she is living a dream.

“I’ve never been so excited and nervous for something in my entire life! This journey hasn’t even begun yet and I already feel like I’m in a dream!” she gushed.

Radio presenter Iain Lee let slip that Sam Allardyce, Jamie Laing and Anneka Rice would be taking part in the dancing series, but the BBC has yet to comment on this news.


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Other rumoured contestants include Andy Murray, Catherine Tyldesley and Una Healy.

Hosts Tess Daly and Claudia Winklemen will be back to present the show. 


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Professional dancer Motsi Mabuse will complete the judging panel. Motsi, who is the sister of pro-dancer Oti, previously worked on the German version of Strictly so she’ll fit right in.

We can’t wait for the rest of the lineup to be revealed. Who do you want to see on the show this year?


The celebrity contestants are gearing up to take part in Strictly Come Dancing 2019, but their identities have remained secret over the last few weeks.

The stars have once again been given hidden codenames to conceal their identities, and this year's theme has been unveiled: Superheroes.

According to HELLO! Magazine, the mix of stars include Batman, Wonder Woman, Supergirl, Mystique, Catwoman, Hulk, Captain America and Bananaman.


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The celebrities will begin to be announced by the BBC in mid-August, as per the usual Strictly way.

Various stars rumoured to be involved include former The Saturdays singer Una Healy, Line of Duty actor Adrian Dunbar, I'm a Celebrity winner Harry Redknapp, Boyzone bandmate Keith Duffy, Atomic Kitten's Natasha Hamilton, Blue Peter presenter Radzi Chinyanganya and Coronation Street actor Jack P Shepherd.

The professional dancers are expected to start rehearsals next week, which Diane Buswell let slip in mid-July on Sunday Brunch,


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"In less than two weeks the pros go back. The professionals do all the professional routines. So we have a month where we go in every day to learn a new dance and then we meet the celebrities. When I find out who my celebrity is, it's legit on camera and on TV, so it's very exciting."

Big changes are afoot on this years' show, with new judge Motsi Mabuse revealed just the other day. Motsi is the older sister of Strictly pro Oti Mabuse, and is taking over from Dame Darcey Bussell.

"I am absolutely overjoyed to be joining the Strictly judging panel," she said. "I have so much respect and admiration for the other three judges and hope to add my own bit of sparkle to the show. I can't wait to get started."


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Former champion Ore Oduba, who lifted the Glitterball Trophy in the 2016 series with Joanne Clifton, spoke of the difficulties Darcey’s replacement Motsi will face:

“I think whoever they choose is someone who has that wealth of knowledge. These pros know what they’re talking about.

“You see them getting judged, it’s a very difficult world if you’re laying judgment on people who know more than you," he continued. “But all the pros respect each other."

Feature image: Instagram/@bbcstrictly


Strictly Come Dancing have announced their new judge and we are so thrilled for her.

The BBC confirmed that Motsi Mabuse will replace Darcey Bussell on the dancing show.

Motsi is a former German Latin Champion and South African Champion.

She has previously worked as a judge on Germany's version of Strictly called Let's Dance. She is also the sister of professional dancer Oti Mabuse.

Motsi Mabuse gushed about her new role: “I am absolutely overjoyed to be joining the Strictly judging panel. I have so much respect and admiration for the other three judges and hope to add my own bit of sparkle to the show. I can’t wait to get started!”

Charlotte Moore, Director of BBC Content says: “Motsi is a brilliant addition to the show. She is a wonderful dancer in her own right and already has years of experience as a judge under her belt. We’re all looking forward to welcoming her to the Strictly family.”


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Sarah James, Executive Producer of Strictly says: "I am incredibly excited that Motsi Mabuse is joining the show. Motsi's natural warmth, energy and passion for dance makes her the perfect addition to our esteemed judging panel."

Motsi will join fellow judges Shirley Ballas, Craig Revel Horwood and Bruno Tonioli when Strictly Come Dancing returns this autumn.