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Get ready to rumba with Strictly!

Get ready to rumba with Strictly!

Settle in with a star-studded line-up as the Strictly Come Dancing live shows start on BBC One this weekend

By Charlotte Briggs, Staff Writer

Forget pumpkin spice lattes and the leaves turning colour – for us, the most exciting herald of autumn is the start of Strictly Come Dancing. And thankfully, the 21st series promises to be the biggest, sparkliest extravaganze yet!


Following an epic launch show which saw Tess Daly and Claudia Winkleman welcome 15 new celebrities to the dance floor, as well as a tribute to the late Ballroom legend Len Goodman and an unforgettable performance from judges Shirley Ballas, Anton Du Beke, Craig Revel Horwood and Motsi Mabuse, we’re cancelling our Saturday night plans for the foreseeable.



So, who’s in it? The first three celebrities to be revealed for the 2023 line-up were Mr Selfridge actor Amanda Abbington, veteran presenter Angela Rippon and West End performer Layton Williams.


Announcements soon followed for Channel 4 newsreader Krishnan Guru-Murthy, stand-up comedian Eddie Kadi, presenter and The Great British Bake Off: Extra Slice panellist Angela Scanlon, reality star turned documentary maker Zara McDermott, Waterloo Road actor Adam Thomas, radio host Nikita Kanda and former Corrie star Ellie Leach.


And rounding things off are Paralympic champion Jody Cundy, EastEnders’ Bobby Brazier, Casualty’s Nigel Harman, retired tennis player and commentator Annabel Croft and entertainer Les Dennis. Phew!


Our predictions? We’re guessing that Layton Williams and Angela Scanlon could secure themselves a spot in the Strictly final due to their dancing credentials. Layton is the star of musical Everybody’s Talking About Jamie, while Angela is an ex-member of the O’Shea Irish Dance Company.


There’s no doubt that this year’s oldest contestant Angela Rippon and wild card Krishnan Guru-Murthy will both be giving it their all, while all-round entertainer Les Dennis could be the series’ dark horse (after all, Les has a knack for winning talent shows). But the Strictly contestants have surprised us before, and any of them could make it to the final.



Plus, these famous faces will have a helping hand along the way with their Strictly pro partners, including former winners Dianne Buswell, Katya Jones, Giovanni Pernice and Jowita Przystal. We can’t wait to see what show-stopping routines, theme weeks, thrilling lifts, musical acts and group performances are in store for us this year!


Dust off your paddleboards and get ready for all the action with Strictly Come Dancing officially returning to screens from Saturday 23 September at 6.15pm on BBC One and BBC iPlayer (Apps & Games > BBC iPlayer). You can also catch the Strictly Come Dancing launch show now in Apps & Games > BBC iPlayer.


And if you can’t wait until the big day then be sure to sway and sashay along to some of Strictly Come Dancing’s most memorable moments from its 20-series run.


Danny and Oti’s samba


2016 runner-up Danny Mac and Oti Mabuse’s sizzling samba has a spot in Strictly Come Dancing’s hall of fame. In fact, former Hollyoaks actor Danny was the highest-scoring male celebrity to ever appear on the show, at the time.


Bill and Oti’s couple’s choice


Comedian Bill Bailey and Oti Mabuse’s dance to “Rapper’s Delight” was so iconic that they reprised it for their final performance, earning the unlikely duo the glitterball trophy for Strictly Come Dancing 2020.


Rose and Giovanni’s couple’s choice


Who could forget this breathtaking Couple’s Choice routine from 2021 winners Rose Ayling-Ellis and Giovanni Pernice? There wasn’t a dry eye in the ballroom when the actor movingly performed some of the dance without musical accompainment, bringing the experience of deafness to life for millions of viewers.


Ashley and Pasha’s salsa


No one puts Ashley Roberts in the corner! The former Pussycat Doll and Pasha Kovalev wowed with their Dirty Dancing tribute, including Patrick Swayze and Jennifer Grey’s spectacular lift. A bit of Strictly trvia: Ashley is the celebrity with the highest average score in Strictly Come Dancing history!


Ed and Katya’s salsa


Ex-politician Ed Balls put his best foot forward throughout his time on Strictly, giving a performance to remember with a salsa twist on the viral dance craze based on Sy’s “Gangnam Style”.


And whether you’re a diehard Strictly fan or new to the show, print out our handy play-along bingo card below for Strictly Come Dancing 2023. We wonder how long it’ll take for “The Queen Of Latin” Shirley Ballas to give her first score of 10!



When are the Strictly Come Dancing live shows on telly?

The first live show where the celebrities dance with their professional partners begin at 6.15pm on Saturday 23 September on BBC One HD (CH 101) and BBC iPlayer (Apps & Games > BBC iPlayer). The live shows will continue until mid-December when Strictly concludes with one couple lifting the glitterball trophy.


Plus, keep up with all the gossip and secrets from behind the scenes with Janette Manrara and Fleur East on Strictly: It Takes Two, starting at 6.30pm on Monday 25 September on BBC Two HD (CH 102).


Who won Strictly Come Dancing 2022?

Countryfile host Hamza Yassin won the Strictly final with his partner Jowita Przystal last year, with the presenter saying that winning Strictly Come Dancing was “the best thing that has ever happened to me”.


Yassin quickly became a fan favourite and beat other finalists in the public vote, including EastEnders’ Molly Rainford, singer Fleur East and former Blue Peter presenter Helen Skelton.


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Image credit: Strictly Come Dancing © BBC Studios / Ray Burmiston