Saturday 1 October 2016

‘There comes a time in the day when you can’t take anymore’ - Daniel O’Donnell on gruelling Strictly rehearsals

Published 14/09/2015 | 15:41

Daniel O'Donnell - Strictly Come Dancing
Daniel O'Donnell - Strictly Come Dancing

There’ll be murder on the dancefloor, if Daniel O’Donnell is pushed much further in his Strictly Come Dancing rehearsals.

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Speaking to Ray D’Arcy on RTE Radio One, the singer and contestant on the upcoming series of Strictly Come Dancing revealed the challenges he is overcoming to get his routine ready for opening night with partner Kristina Rihanoff.

Strictly Donegal: Daniel O'Donnell with partner Kristina and presenter Tess.
Strictly Donegal: Daniel O'Donnell with partner Kristina and presenter Tess.

“I said to her now, I’ll not be shouting and roaring, no matter if I’m happy or tired I’m always the same.“

“But there comes a time in the day where you’re just overloaded, you just can’t take anymore,” he told D’Arcy.

“One day, I just looked at her and she might as well have spoken to me in Russian. I’ve seen that look many times before she said to me,” he says of his exhaustion.

“Today I felt a bit more comfortable - I could remember it a wee bit better,” he said positively.

Host Tess Daly, Daniel O'Donnell and his dance partner Kristina Rihanoff
Host Tess Daly, Daniel O'Donnell and his dance partner Kristina Rihanoff

The Donegal native said no matter what, he is determined to keep a smile on his face when the all important opening night rolls around.

“You’ve to really keep your mind on it all the time. It’s a choreographed piece, you’re doing a pattern, like you’re drawing something and you've to remember where the dots are.”

“You have to just keep your focus on the job at hand. Sometimes your back is not straight or your neck is not down. One day I had to tape my right hand to keep my fingers together as they kept going apart.”

With a mere twelve days to go until the live shows, O’Donnell admitted his stomach is “leaping” with nerves.

Daniel O’Donnell with Natalie Lowe at the launch of ‘Strictly Come Dancing 2015’
Daniel O’Donnell with Natalie Lowe at the launch of ‘Strictly Come Dancing 2015’

“Well I suppose please God I'll get to know it and I’ll get to know it well. The road back is further now than the one forward - so I’ve to keep going.”

“Whatever I look like on the night , I’m enjoying the whole process. Try your best and that’s all you can do.” he confirmed.

“Kristina is a great teacher. She has great patience altogether. She doesn't get annoyed. She wants you to be your best. If you’re a sight, they're going to be a sight!”

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