Thursday 15 November 2018

Strictly announces line-up for Christmas special

Six celebs will be competing to win the Christmas Silver Star trophy.

Ann Widdecombe on Strictly (Guy Levy/BBC)
Ann Widdecombe on Strictly (Guy Levy/BBC)

By Julia Hunt, Press Association Entertainment Correspondent

Ann Widdecombe and Caroline Flack are among the stars dusting off their dancing shoes for another shot at Strictly success in the show’s Christmas special.

Anita Rani, Aston Merrygold, Jake Wood and Michael Vaughan will also be taking another twirl on the dancefloor for the all-star fairy tale-themed Strictly Come Dancing on BBC One on Christmas Day.

Former Conservative MP Widdecombe, who was a contestant on the eighth series, predicted she would “once again be pushed, pulled, cajoled and coaxed around the dancefloor in all manner of ways”.

“Who knows, they might even fire me out of a canon,” she quipped.

Love Island host Flack, who won season 12, said returning to Strictly was “the best present” she could think of.

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Caroline Flack (PA)

“I can’t quite believe it’s been four years since I had the best time of my life, dancing with Pasha (Kovalev) on the Strictly dancefloor,” she said.

“My glitterball (trophy) still has pride of place in my living room!

“It always felt like a family at the Strictly Come Dancing studios, so how could I say no to performing one last time on this year’s Christmas special?”

Presenter Rani (series 13) said she was excited about “stepping back inside the glitterball of glam”.

Former JLS star Merrygold competed on the programme in 2017 and was a fan favourite, but was controversially eliminated early in the season as the sixth to be voted out.

“I’m so happy to be able to get back on the Strictly floor – I feel like I’ve got some unfinished business with it.” he said.

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Strictly Come Dancing judges (BBC)

EastEnders star Wood (series 12) said he “jumped at the chance” to rock around the Christmas tree, while cricketer Vaughan, who was on the 10th series, confessed to being a little rusty.

“Having not danced at all since 2012 I can’t be any worse than then, as I had no clue then. Still have no clue, but can’t wait to have some fun and at least it will help lose a few pounds over the Christmas party season.” he said.

Each of the six couples will perform a festive routine in a bid to be crowned Christmas champions 2018.

The programme will be hosted by Tess Daly and Claudia Winkleman, with Craig Revel Horwood, Darcey Bussell, Bruno Tonioli, and Shirley Ballas dishing out the critiques.

The one-off episode will see the famous faces competing to win the Christmas Silver Star trophy.

The Strictly Come Dancing Christmas special will air on BBC One on Christmas Day.

Press Association

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