Strictly Come Dancing 2020 is making our weekend evenings brighter...
Strictly Come Dancing 2020 is here in all its sparkly glory, bringing some much-needed entertainment to our winter weekend evenings.
Due to the pandemic Strictly Come Dancing 2020 started later than usual this year, and fans will already know that Halloween Week was cancelled while Blackpool Week was recreated in the London studios instead of the famous Blackpool Tower Ballroom.
Strictly Come Dancing 2020: Everything you need to know…
The full list of celebrities
EastEnders star Maisie Smith, who plays Tiffany Butcher-Baker on the soap, is dancing with professional dancer, Gorka Marquez.
Maisie has called being on Strictly a dream come true.
“It’s one of those things that you always wanted to do but you don’t expect it to actually happen, so in my house there was a lot of shock!”
Maisie has impressed judges with her hard work and determination, juggling Strictly rehearsals while still filming at EastEnders.
Caroline Quentin was paired with dancer Johannes Radebe, but sadly they were the fourth couple to be voted out of the competition.
Before joining the show the Men Behaving Badly and Jonathan Creek actress said: “I am thrilled and terrified in equal measure to be taking part.”
“I have never in 50 years of working in showbiz had a reaction like it to anything I have ever done.
“People are thrilled, absolutely thrilled. Everywhere I go people tell me they can’t wait. It’s been so delightful.”
Singer Max was dancing with Diane Buswell, but became the third celebrity to be voted off when he ended up in the dance off against Maisie.
Before joining Strictly, Max said: “Buzzing to be on Strictly this year. Not really one for the dance floor, but I take a lot of comfort in the fact that Jay McGuiness set The Wanted’s bar so low…”
Former NFL star Jason was paired with Luba Mushtuk, but sadly he was the second celebrity to be voted out of the competition.
Jason said: “It was the opportunity of a lifetime. I had so much fun, thank you Luba.
“You have worked so hard with me, you’re a great friend for life and I appreciate all that you have done, I really do.”
Nicola Adams and her dance partner Katya Jones made Strictly history by being the first same sex couple.
Sadly their Strictly journey came crashing to an end when Katya tested positive for covid just a few weeks into the competition.
At the start of her time on Strictly, Nicola said: “I’m a huge fan of the show and am thrilled to be part of something that holds such a special place in so many people’s hearts.”
“People might know me from work in the ring, but I’ll be every bit as passionate and dedicated on the dance-floor too.
Good Morning Britain star Ranvir Singh, is dancing up a storm with Giovanni Pernice.
She says: “The initial feeling of being confirmed for Strictly is one of complete terror – feels like embarking on a rollercoaster, where you really want to do it but you are equally scared.
Judges have commented on the special bond forming between Ranvir and Giovanni, igniting romance rumours, which Ranvir has been quick to deny.
Radio 1 DJ Clara Amfo has been be hitting the dance floor with Aljaz Skorjanec, but sadly the pair were the fifth couple to leave the show.
Speaking about her time on Strictly, Clara said: “As we know this year has been a real challenge and escapism through dancing is something I know we all enjoy.”
Comedian Bill Bailey has proven to be hugely popular on the show.
Fans were very excited when he was paired with last year’s winner Oti Mabuse, and the pair have become a forced to be reckoned with.
Bill says: “In these strange times we’re living through, it feels right to do something different and take on a new challenge. So I am delighted to be a part of this year’s unique Strictly Come Dancing.
“My late mum Madrin would have loved it – I hope she’ll be watching.”
TV presenter and Invictus Games medallist, JJ Chalmers is dancing with Amy Dowden
JJ says: “My whole life is defined by facing challenges. Whether it’s becoming a Royal Marine Commando, recovering from my injuries sustained in Afghanistan to competing in The Invictus Games.
“Now as a TV presenter I’m lucky enough to witness some of the greatest sporting contests in the world.
“Strictly is a whole different ball game in respect to the challenges I will face but I’m up for an adventure and at least my mum will know where I am!”
Jamie Laing is back for a second attempt at Strictly after getting injured in the launch show last year, and this time he is partnered with Karen Hauer.
Jamie says: “Hopefully this time I can last long enough so my mum can see me dance.
“The reason I’m doing it is to make my mum proud, but all I did last year was make her even more disappointed. Let’s change that this year, can’t wait!
“I feel like I’m pretty fit and healthy. If something happens then the Strictly curse isn’t about me sleeping with someone else, it’s definitely about my foot!”
HRVY (Harvey Leigh Cantwell) is a 21-year-old popstar and is dancing with Janette Manrara.
The pair have become firm favourites with the judges and viewers as they continue to impress each week.
HRVY and Janette made Strictly history recently by earning a perfect score for their Couple Choice dance in week 6.
HRVY said before joining the show: “Being on Strictly is going to be such an amazing experience and I’m so thankful to be taking part this year.
“I think my mum is more excited that she’ll be able to see me every Saturday night now.”
Former Home Secretary Jacqui was paired with Strictly legend Anton du Beke, but sadly the pair were the first couple to be voted out of the show.
Speaking of her exit, Jacqui said: “I’m sorry I couldn’t have continued dancing with the amazing Anton, but happy for all those amazing and lovely dancers.
“Good luck to them all, your country needs toy and Strictly!”
When is Strictly Come Dancing on?
Strictly live shows will be aired on Saturdays at 7.25 on BBC One, while the results show will be on Sunday evenings at 7.15, also on BBC One.
It has also been announced that a live audience will be returning to the show now that lockdown restrictions have eased.
The audience members will have to follow strict government guidelines and social distancing, but having their cheers back in the studio is bound to add some extra sparkle to Strictly.
The Strictly judges
While Craig Revel Horwood, Shirley Ballas and Motsi Mabuse have all returned to the Strictly judges panel, however Bruno Tonioli has been joining the judges on the results show via video from LA.
In usual years, Bruno has flown back and forth between the UK and the US every week, but current travel restrictions have made that impossible.
Is there a Strictly Christmas special this year?
Yes! Although this year’s festive show won’t be quite the same as past year, it still promises to be a jewel in the Christmas TV schedule.
This year fans will be treated to Strictly: The Christmas Countdown, which will see presenters Tess Daly and Claudia Winkleman take a look back at 25 of the most memorable dances since Strictly started, all voted for by the public.
We’re still waiting for a confirmed date for Strictly: The Christmas Countdown, however, it will be part of the festive line up on BBC One.