Entertainment

Saturday 21 September 2019

Strictly’s Darcey Bussell: Thank goodness some of the celebs have experience

The BBC One show has sparked controversy with its line-ups over the years.

Craig Revel-Horwood, Dame Darcey Bussell, Shirley Ballas and Bruno Tonioli at the launch of Strictly Come Dancing 2018 (Ian West/PA)
Craig Revel-Horwood, Dame Darcey Bussell, Shirley Ballas and Bruno Tonioli at the launch of Strictly Come Dancing 2018 (Ian West/PA)

By Sherna Noah, Press Association Senior Entertainment Correspondent

Dame Darcey Bussell has said she feels relieved that there are celebrities with experience competing on Strictly Come Dancing.

The BBC One show has sparked controversy with its line-up, with Steps star Faye Tozer and Pussycat Dolls singer Ashley Roberts having notched up previous dance experience.

“For me, as a judge, thank goodness there are people that have some tiny bit of dance experience,” the judge told BBC Breakfast.

But she admitted: “If there are mistakes … they can hide their mistakes because they are natural performers and they have been under that pressure. A lot of people have never been under the lights and razzmatazz.”

The former prima ballerina said: “All actors have been to stage school. They will have all done some taster of dance in their lives..

“If they’ve had a flavour of dance I’m really happy about that. I think everybody should have the opportunity to have an experience in dance…

“For me, it’s great that somebody has had an experience of dance and come on that show.”

She added: “Whether they’re are going to be better than the others, you can’t tell. You never know.”

And she said that “the techniques” involved in ballroom and contemporary dance “are so different”.

When “you’re so trained in one style, it’s incredibly difficult to suddenly change”, she said.

She said Casualty actor Charles Venn could win the show, adding: “When you see somebody on a journey, that’s what changes it for everybody.”

Dame Darcey also revealed a part of her body which she does not like – her armpits.

“They’re quite athletic-looking. They’re not very feminine,” she said.

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