Woman’s Strictly columnist reports from backstage…
This year, there’s a very fun vibe backstage and I think that filters through to the judges. You can tell we’re having fun, can’t you? Seann [Walsh] is a bubble of sparkle, so is Dr Ranj – they’ve both got such a great sense of humour. Everyone fits in, there’s no ill feeling and it really feels like everyone is working on the same team. I think it’s the best cast we’ve ever had.
Team work makes the dream work
Every year Strictly seems to get bigger and better and what viewers maybe don’t realise is that there are hundreds of people working behind the scenes to make Saturday nights special for them. It’s not just the hair and make-up teams, you’ve got people making props from scratch. I wish everyone could see the show live just once because they’d get to see this well-oiled machine in action. It’s spectacular what the BBC creates.
Thinking outside the box
Strictly has been going for 16 years now, so it’s important that the professional dancers keep it fresh to keep viewers entertained. Katya Jones choreographed a fantastic Paso Doble for Seann Walsh. It was innovative and creative but still had basic elements within it.
Faye for the final
Faye Tozer has been a standout contestant for me for the past few weeks now. The Quickstep she did for movie week was one of the best I’ve ever seen on Strictly – or for that matter on any version of Dancing with the Stars around the world. She’s so on her game.
Dancing with the stars
Someone tweeted that they’d love to see me as a judge on Dancing with the Stars. I’m very settled on Strictly, but if they asked me to do the US version I’d go with Bruno [Tonioli] and come back with Bruno. But my loyalties lie with Strictly first. I like being in England around my family.