Tuesday 22 August 2017

Joanne Clifton cringes over ‘double-chin’ moment during Strictly win

The dancer admitted that her winning moment almost turned into a major TV blooper.

Joanne Clifton (Matt Crossick/PA)
Joanne Clifton (Matt Crossick/PA)

By Francesca Gosling

While viewers may remember a heartwarming scene when Joanne Clifton won last year’s Strictly Come Dancing with partner Ore Oduba, Clifton herself admitted that the moment was marred by double chins and a fight against fainting.

The pro dancer looked back on the moment soon after announcing that she would be stepping down from the BBC show to focus on her musical theatre career.

She told BBC Breakfast on Wednesday: “I’ve got six double chins… I was concentrating on not fainting.

“When Tess and Claudia were giving us the ball and talking to us my hands were shaking and I was just saying to myself, ‘don’t faint, don’t faint on live TV’.

“We didn’t think we had won at all… I was just tapping along with the music and Ore was having a look around.”

While Clifton, 33, said it was a “massive decision” to quit the show, she admitted that last year’s victory made it a much easier one to make.

As well as stepping into a role in Thoroughly Modern Milly, she will soon be starting her new job as leading lady in a UK tour of Flashdance.

The move, she said, will also give her brother Kevin an opportunity to take over the Strictly crown, after she narrowly beat him and partner Louise Redknapp at the final stage.

“He has been in the final for four years now and hasn’t won it,” Clifton said.

“The first thing I said when the cameras went off (after the final) was ‘I’m so sorry,’ but he told me, ‘Don’t ever say that again because there is no-one in this world that could be prouder of you than I am right now’.

“I’ve given him a chance, it’s his chance now.”

She also made an awkward confession to her mother during her early morning TV appearance as she showed off her nose piercing.

After trying to keep the sparkly stud out of view of the cameras, she eventually admitted: “I’m sorry mum… I tried to take it out!”

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