Entertainment

Sunday 22 September 2019

Neil and Katya Jones pictured on stage for first time since split

The estranged couple performed at the red carpet launch of the BBC One show.

Katya Jones and Neil Jones during a performance at the red carpet launch of Strictly Come Dancing 2019 (Ian West/PA)
Katya Jones and Neil Jones during a performance at the red carpet launch of Strictly Come Dancing 2019 (Ian West/PA)

By Alex Green and Craig Simpson, PA

Neil and Katya Jones danced together for the first time since announcing their split during the red carpet launch of Strictly Come Dancing 2019.

The pair announced their separation in an official statement earlier this month after six years of marriage and 11 years together overall.

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Katya Jones and Neil Jones at the red carpet launch (Ian West/PA)

At the BBC event in London, the estranged couple performed in front of a live audience, as their fellow professionals also took to the stage.

Dressed in sequinned costumes, Neil and Katya were cheered on as they moved alongside one another.

Their split came nearly a year after Katya was pictured kissing her former dance partner Seann Walsh, although they did not cite the comedian in their reasons for the break-up.

Russian choreographer Katya was pictured sharing a kiss with Walsh on a night out during the last series of Strictly.

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Judges Craig Revel Horwood, Motsi Mabuse, Shirley Ballas and Bruno Tonioli at the launch (Ian West/PA)

The incident led to the pair performing a “dance of shame” on the show, as the media scrutinised another instance of the so-called Strictly curse.

Neil and Katya remained together following the controversy, and have said the well-publicised incident was not the cause of their split.

They said in a joint statement that they have “made the mutual decision to separate”, adding that their relationship had mellowed into a friendship.

Earlier Katya had taken to Instagram to share her excitement about the launch.

“It’s only bloody red carpet day for my 4th season of BBC Strictly,” she said.

“I will never forget my first one! And every year it’s one of the best days of the year! Now it’s only dancing until Christmas!”

The event comes after redhead Neil announced last week that he would be heading out on the road with his new show, titled Gingerland.

The 21-date tour will be his first since the split and will see him explore “what made me unique in the world of ballroom dancing and who influenced me as a dancer”.

PA Media

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