Monday 23 September 2019

Why Strictly’s Brian Conley doesn’t think he has the sex factor just yet

The entertainer and comedian has also spoken frankly about his battle with depression.

Strictly Come Dancing
Strictly Come Dancing

By Kerri-Ann Roper, Press Association Entertainment Editor

Comedian Brian Conley has said he is “not a sex magnet, but more like a fridge magnet” since he started competing on Strictly Come Dancing.

Conley, 56, and his Welsh dancing partner Amy Dowden landed at the bottom of the BBC One show’s leaderboard after their first dance, a tango, failed to impress the judges.

His cha cha cha on Saturday night saw him earn a few more points and, combined with last week’s marks, has left him in second-to-last place and at risk of being the first to be eliminated from the competition.

Strictly Come Dancing 2017

Asked if physically he was feeling like a ‘sex god’ on the dance floor since starting training, he joked: “I’m not a sex magnet, I’m more like a fridge magnet.”

The TV star and entertainer also commented on some of the other celebrity contestants having previous dance experience.

He said that he was “sure there is a level of expertise there that is different to other people, but you know we’re all celebrities so dancing is a part of it you know”.

He added: “But it’s part of the game, as is every year, there’s always a certain level of people that have more experience in dance than others.”

Conley defended his Strictly co-star, singer Aston Merrygold, who has previously said that, despite his time spent in boy band JLS, he is not a trained dancer.

“Aston is a very good street dancer and that’s all well and good, but I never saw JLS dance a tango or the paso,” he said.

Asked if he thought Merrygold had an unfair advantage he said: “No, not with me love, I mean I’m at the bottom of the league, I’ve now got somewhere to go, you see what Aston doesn’t know is, I am pretending to be bad!”

In 2012, Conley was forced to quit I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here! after suffering from the effects of malnutrition and exhaustion.

Following his exit, he admitted he had stopped taking anti-depressants he had used for 15 years during filming in the Australian jungle, against the wishes of the show’s producers.

He has also since spoken about battling depression following the death of his father nearly 20 years ago.

Strictly Come Dancing 2017

“Of course he’d (my dad) be honoured, it’s the greatest live, entertainment show in the world,” he said, adding: “Of course, I think he’d be laughing, without a doubt thinking, ‘Oh my god Bri, what have you taken on?'”.

Talking about the ‘best things’ that helped him deal with his depression and anxiety, he said mindfulness and learning yoga had been key.

He added: “And having you know, being aware of how to control your breathing, but you know what happened to me was twenty years ago that was when my father died.

“But I’ve always wanted to bring it up because I think one in four people cope with this and it can happen to anyone and it’s just a nod, you know, many of us have come through this and come out the other side… the one thing I would say is remind yourself you will get better.”

Following Saturday night’s instalment of Strictly Come Dancing, the first celebrity contestant will be sent home during the Sunday night show.

PA Media

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