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Strictly Come Dancing is a British television show, featuring celebrities with professional dance partners competing in Ballroom and Latin dances. The title of the show suggests a continuation of the long-running series Come Dancing, with an allusion to the film Strictly Ballroom. The format has been exported to 30 other countries (see Dancing with the Stars), and has also inspired a modern-dance themed spin-off Strictly Dance Fever.

The show has run on BBC One since 15 May 2004, primarily on Saturday evenings. A seventh series began on 18 September 2009 and is currently airing. A further five stand-alone Christmas Specials have also been produced, in consecutive years from 2004 to 2008. Since the fourth series, the show has also aired on the BBC's high definition channel, BBC HD.


The show pairs a number of celebrities with professional ballroom dancers who each week compete against each other in a competition to impress a panel of judges and the viewing public in order to survive potential elimination. Through telephone voting, viewers vote who they would like to stay, the results of the poll being combined with the ranking of the panel of judges. For example, with four contestants left, the judges' favourite would receive four points, second favourite three points, and so on, and similarly with the viewers' rankings. The profits from the telephone lines were donated to Sport Relief in series 1, and to Children in Need from series 2 to 5.

The show is broadcast live on BBC One on Saturday evenings, and it is presented by Bruce Forsyth and Tess Daly. For some of the second series, Natasha Kaplinsky stood in temporarily for Tess Daly while she took maternity leave. The judging panel consists of Bruno Tonioli, Alesha Dixon, Len Goodman and Craig Revel Horwood. Goodman and Tonioli commute weekly between Hollywood and London to judge both the American and British versions of the show simultaneously. Each judge gives the performance a mark out of ten, giving an overall total out of forty. The voice-over announcer is Alan Dedicoat. During series four, an hour long highlight show was shown on Sundays at 7pm on BBC Two, and during series five, the results show moved to Sunday evenings, although it is filmed on Saturday and then broadcast "as live" each Sunday.

The singers on the show are Priscilla Jones Campbell, Hayley Sanderson, Tommy Blaize , Lance Ellington and Andrea Grant. The music director is David Arch. Lance Ellington and Tommy Blaize have been part of the Strictly since its beginning. In Series 3 Andrea Grant joined the singing team. David Arch and Priscilla Jones Campbell joined in the fourth series, and Hayley Sanderson in the fifth.

The show is broadcast from a specially constructed set at the BBC Television Centremarker. However, in the first two series, shows were also filmed at the Tower Ballroom in Blackpoolmarker, where the original Come Dancing series was filmed in the 1970s.

In the second series, two shows were filmed at the Tower Ballroom, show five and the Grand Final which was broadcast live on 11 December 2004. In 2005 though the BBC announced that they would not be returning to the venue for the third series due to "logistical problems".
In October 2008, Craig Revel Horwood called for the series to return to the Tower Ballroom saying, "the atmosphere was electric. It's huge and has so much history. The Tower Ballroom puts a lot of pressure on the professionals and the celebrities to perform to the best of their potential. What a wonderful place to go live to 12 million people. We have got to get the BBC to bring Strictly Come Dancing back to Blackpool."


Years Series Presenter Show
2004-present 1-present Bruce Forsyth Main show
2004-present 1-present Tess Daly Main show
2004-present 2-present Claudia Winkleman It Takes Two/Live Tour
2004 1 Justin Lee Collins Strictly Come Dancing on Three
2004 2 Natasha Kaplinsky Main show
2008-present 5-6 Kate Thornton Live Tour
2008 6 Fearne Cotton Children in Need Special
2009 7 Claudia Winkleman Main show
2009 7 Ronnie Corbett Main show


Years Series Judge
2004-present 1-present Craig Revel Horwood
2004-present 1-present Len Goodman
2004-present 1-present Bruno Tonioli
2009-present 7-present Alesha Dixon
2009-present 7-present Darcey Bussell (Guest Judge)
2004-2008 1-6 Arlene Phillips

Professional dancers

Years Professional Series
2004-present Brendan Cole Series 1-
2004-present Erin Boag Series 1-
2004-present Anton Du Beke Series 1-
2004-present Darren Bennett Series 2-
2004-present Ian Waite Series 2-
2004-present Lilia Kopylova Series 2-
2005-present Matthew Cutler Series 3-
2006-present Vincent Simone Series 4-
2006-present James Jordan Series 4-
2006-present Ola Jordan Series 4-
2006-present Flavia Cacace Series 4-
2008-present Kristina Rihanoff Series 6-
2008-present Brian Fortuna Series 6-
2009-present Katya Virshilas Series 7-
2009-present Natalie Lowe Series 7-
2009-present Aliona Vilani Series 7-
2004 Kylie Jones Series 1
2004-2008 Camilla Dallerup Series 1-6
2004 Paul Killick Series 1-2
2004 John Byrnes Series 1
2004 Hanna Karttunen Series 1
2004 Hazel Newberry Series 2
2004, 2006-2007 Nicole Cutler Series 2, 4-5
2005 Andrew Cuerden Series 3
2005 Izabella Hannah Series 3
2005 Hanna Haarala Series 3
2005-2008 Karen Hardy Series 3-6
2008 Hayley Holt Series 6


As of series four, coaches are Jaclyn Spencer and Chris Marques (aka Cuban Groove) for Salsa and Mambo, and Jenny Thomas and Ryan Francois for Swing,Jive, Rock n Roll and The Charleston. The Argentine Tango coaches in Series three were Flavia Cacace and Vincent Simone, both of whom have subsequently competed in the show.

Dance Off

From Series 5, a new system was introduced called the Dance Off. The Dance Off is performed by the two couples with the lowest scores following the judges' scores and public vote. After performing their dance again, the judges are asked one-by-one who they would like to save, and the couple with the most votes remains in the competition. If there is a tie, head judge Len Goodman has the deciding vote.

The results show is recorded on the Saturday night directly after the live show and incorporates the result of the viewers' votes which are completed by 21:30. This was confirmed by the official BBC website in 2008:"The Sunday show is recorded on Saturday night but no element involving the results of the vote will start recording until after lines are closed and votes counted and verified."Throughout the results show the presenters refer to 'last night' in reference to the main show, due to the air date of the Sunday programme, and Tess Daly's dress is changed to present an illusion of a second live broadcast.

From Series 7, the Sunday results show will be axed and put back to Saturday nights as a result of a revamp of the show.

Strictly Come Dancing: It Takes Two

During the run of Strictly Come Dancing, Strictly Come Dancing: It Takes Two airs each week night on BBC Two, hosted by Claudia Winkleman. It features reviews of the performances during the previous Saturday show, and interviews with and training footage of the couples preparing for the next show. The judges and other celebrities also provide their opinions on how the couples are doing. It Takes Two replaces Strictly Come Dancing on Three, hosted by Justin Lee Collins, which ran on BBC Three during the first series. BBC Two Scotland airs the programme on four nights only, running their own Gaelic-language programming on Thursdays instead.

Main series

Series Premiere date Winning couple Runner-up couple Third place couple Other contestants (in order of elimination) Number of couples
1 15 May 2004 Natasha Kaplinsky & Brendan Cole Christopher Parker & Hanna Karttunen Lesley Garrett & Anton Du Beke Jason Wood, David Dickinson, Verona Joseph, Claire Sweeney, Martin Offiah. 8
2 23 October 2004 Jill Halfpenny & Darren Bennett Denise Lewis & Ian Waite Julian Clary & Erin Boag Quentin Willson, Carol Vorderman, Esther Rantzen, Diarmuid Gavin, Sarah Manners, Roger Black, Aled Jones. 10
3 15 October 2005 Darren Gough & Lilia Kopylova Colin Jackson & Erin Boag Zoe Ball & Ian Waite Siobhan Hayes, Jaye Jacobs, Gloria Hunniford, Fiona Philips, Dennis Taylor, Will Thorp, Bill Turnbull, Patsy Palmer, James Martin. 12
4 7 October 2006 Mark Ramprakash & Karen Hardy Matt Dawson & Lilia Kopylova Emma Bunton & Darren Bennett Nicolas Owen, Mica Paris, Jimmy Tarbuck (withdrew), DJ Spoony, Georgina Bouzova, Jan Ravens, Ray Fearon, Peter Schmeichel, Claire King, Carol Smillie, Louisa Lytton. 14
5 6 October 2007 Alesha Dixon & Matthew Cutler Matt Di Angelo & Flavia Cacace Gethin Jones & Camilla Dallerup Brian Capron, Stephanie Beecham, Willie Thorne, Gabby Logan, Dominic Littlewood, Penny Lancaster-Stewart, Kate Garraway, John Barnes, Kelly Brook (withdrew), Kenny Logan, Letitia Dean. 14
6 20 September 2008 Tom Chambers & Camilla Dallerup Rachel Stevens & Vincent Simone Lisa Snowdon & Brendan Cole Phil Daniels, Gillian Taylforth, Gary Rhodes, Jessie Wallace, Don Warrington, Mark Foster, Andrew Castle, Heather Small, Cherie Lunghi, John Sergeant (withdrew), Jodie Kidd, Christine Bleakley, Austin Healey. 16
7 18 September 2009 Eliminated: Martina Hingis, Richard Dunwoody, Rav Wilding, Lynda Bellingham, Joe Calzaghe, Jo Wood, Zoe Lucker, Craig Kelly, Phil Tufnell, Jade Johnson (withdrew), Ricky Groves, Natalie Cassidy

Competing:Ali Bastian, Chris Hollins, Laila Rouass, Ricky Whittle

Series 1

15 May to 3 July 2004, in order of elimination
Celebrity Professional Voted out
Jason Wood (Comedian) Kylie Jones Week 2
David Dickinson (Bargain Hunt presenter) Camilla Dallerup Week 3
Verona Joseph (Former Holby City Star) Paul Killick Week 4
Claire Sweeney (Actress/TV Presenter) John Byrnes Week 5
Martin Offiah (Former Rugby Player) Erin Boag Week 6
Lesley Garrett (Singer) Anton du Beke Week 7
Christopher Parker (Eastenders Actor) Hanna Karttunen Final (second place)
Natasha Kaplinsky (Newsreader) Brendan Cole Series winners

Judges' scoring summary

Bold scores indicate the highest for that week. Red indicates the lowest score. * indicates that this couple was in the bottom two.
Team Week 1 Week 2 Week 3 Week 4 Week 5 Week 6 Week 7 Week 8

Natasha/Brendan 27 31 26* 35 37 31+36=67 36+35=71 36+31+35=102
Christopher/Hanna 19 23 19 28 15 22+15=37 21+16=37* 24+17+22=63
Lesley/Anton 29 27 29 30* 27* 34+26=60* 33+29=62* Eliminated
Martin/Erin 25 21 21 24 22 24+24=48* Eliminated
Claire/John 27 26 34 31 32* Eliminated
Verona/Paul 27 24 24 24* Eliminated
David/Camilla 16 21* 20* Eliminated
Jason/Kylie 21 19* Eliminated

Average chart

Rank by

Place Couple Total Number of

1 1 Natasha & Brendan 396 12 33.0
2 5 Claire & John 150 5 30.0
3 3 Lesley & Anton 264 9 29.3
4 6 Verona & Paul 99 4 24.8
5 4 Martin & Erin 161 7 23.0
6 2 Christopher & Hanna 241 12 20.1
7 8 Jason & Kylie 40 2 20.0
8 7 David & Camilla 57 3 19.0

Dances performed

Team Week 1 Week 2 Week 3 Week 4 Week 5 Week 6 Week 7 Week 8

Natasha & Brendan Cha-Cha-Cha Quickstep Jive Foxtrot Samba Tango, Rumba Waltz, Paso Doble Quickstep, Samba, Freestyle
Christopher & Hanna Cha-Cha-Cha Quickstep Jive Foxtrot Samba Waltz, Paso Doble Tango, Rumba Waltz, Jive, Freestyle
Lesley & Anton Waltz Rumba Tango Paso Doble Samba Foxtrot, Cha-Cha-Cha Quickstep, Jive
Martin & Erin Waltz Rumba Jive Foxtrot Samba Quickstep, Cha-Cha-Cha
Claire & John Waltz Rumba Tango Paso Doble Samba
Verona & Paul Cha-Cha-Cha Quickstep Jive Paso Doble
David & Camilla Cha-Cha-Cha Quickstep Tango
Jason & Kylie Waltz Rumba

 Eliminated     Second place     Winner

The dances performed during Series 1 were as follows:

  • Week 1 : Cha Cha Cha / Waltz
  • Week 2 : Quickstep / Rumba
  • Week 3 : Tango / Jive
  • Week 4 : Foxtrot / Paso Doble
  • Week 5 : Samba
  • Week 6 : 2 dances not yet tackled from previous weeks
  • Week 7 : 2 dances not yet tackled from previous weeks
  • Week 8 : Favourite Ballroom, Favourite Latin & Freestyle Dance

Highest and lowest scoring performances

The best and worst performances in each dance according to the judges' marks are as follows:
Dance Best dancer(s) Best score Worst dancer(s) Worst score
Cha Cha Cha Natasha Kaplinsky/Verona Joseph 27 David Dickinson 16
Jive Lesley Garrett 29 Christopher Parker 17
Rumba Natasha Kaplinsky 36 Christopher Parker 16
Paso doble Natasha Kaplinsky 35 Christopher Parker 15
Samba Natasha Kaplinsky 37 Christopher Parker 15
Waltz Natasha Kaplinsky 36 Jason Wood 21
Quickstep Natasha Kaplinsky 36 David Dickinson 21
Foxtrot Natasha Kaplinsky 35 Martin Offiah 24
Tango Claire Sweeney 34 David Dickinson 20

Series 2

23 October to 11 December 2004, in order of elimination
Celebrity Professional Voted out
Quentin Willson Hazel Newberry Week 1
Carol Vorderman Paul Killick Week 2
Esther Rantzen Anton du Beke Week 3
Diarmuid Gavin Nicole Cutler Week 4
Sarah Manners Brendan Cole Week 5
Roger Black Camilla Dallerup Week 6
Aled Jones Lilia Kopylova Week 7
Julian Clary Erin Boag Final (third place)
Denise Lewis Ian Waite Final (second place)
Jill Halfpenny Darren Bennett Series winners

Judges' scoring summary

Bold scores indicate the highest for that week. Red indicates the lowest score. * indicates they were in the bottom 2 couples.

Team Week 1 Week 2 Week 3 Week 4 Week 5 Week 6 Week 7 Week 8

Jill/Darren 27 32 35 34 35 32+36=68 29+37=66 34+40=74
Denise/Ian 31 32 25* 30 32 34+33=67 35+36=71* 38+33=71
Julian/Erin 19 27 27 20 24* 28+27=55* 24+21=45 29+23=52
Aled/Lilia 29 27 32 25 30 29+27=56 27+30=57* Eliminated
Roger/Camilla 25 22 25 29 23 22+19=41* Eliminated
Sarah/Brendan 28 23 31 29* 23* Eliminated
Diarmuid/Nicole 12 12 14 17* Eliminated
Esther/Anton 24 16* 16* Eliminated
Carol/Paul 22* 20* Eliminated
Quentin/Hazel 8* Eliminated

Average chart

Rank by

Place Couple Total Number of

1 1 Jill & Darren 371 11 33.7
2 2 Denise & Ian 359 11 32.6
3 4 Aled & Lilia 256 9 28.4
4 6 Sarah & Brendan 134 5 26.8
5 3 Julian & Erin 269 11 24.5
6 5 Roger & Camilla 165 7 23.6
7 9 Carol & Paul 42 2 21.0
8 8 Esther & Anton 56 3 18.7
9 7 Diarmuid & Nicole 55 4 13.8
10 10 Quentin & Hazel 8 1 8.0

Dances performed

Team Week 1 Week 2 Week 3 Week 4 Week 5 Week 6 Week 7 Week 8

Jill/Darren Waltz Rumba Jive Foxtrot Samba Quickstep, Cha-Cha-Cha Tango, Paso Doble Foxtrot, Jive
Denise/Ian Waltz Rumba Jive Foxtrot Samba Quickstep, Cha-Cha-Cha Tango, Paso Doble Quickstep, Samba
Julian/Erin Cha-Cha-Cha Quickstep Tango Paso Doble Samba Waltz, Rumba Foxtrot, Jive Quickstep, Samba
Aled/Lilia Cha-Cha-Cha Quickstep Jive Foxtrot Samba Waltz, Rumba Tango, Paso Doble
Roger/Camilla Cha-Cha-Cha Quickstep Jive Foxtrot Samba Waltz, Rumba
Sarah/Brendan Waltz Rumba Tango Paso Doble Samba
Diarmuid/Nicole Cha-Cha-Cha Quickstep Tango Paso Doble
Esther/Anton Waltz Rumba Tango
Carol/Paul Waltz Rumba
Quentin/Hazel Cha-Cha-Cha
 Eliminated     Third place     Second place     Winner

The dances performed during Series 2 were as follows:

  • Week 1 : Cha Cha Cha / Waltz
  • Week 2 : Quickstep / Rumba
  • Week 3 : Tango / Jive
  • Week 4 : Foxtrot / Paso Doble
  • Week 5 : Samba
  • Week 6 : 2 dances not yet tackled from previous weeks
  • Week 7 : 2 dances not yet tackled from previous weeks
  • Week 8 : Favourite Ballroom & Favourite Latin

Highest and lowest scoring performances

The best and worst performances in each dance according to the judges' marks are as follows:
Dance Best dancer(s) Best score Worst dancer(s) Worst score
Cha Cha Cha Jill Halfpenny 36 Quentin Willson 8
Jive Jill Halfpenny 40 Julian Clary 21
Rumba Denise Lewis / Jill Halfpenny 32 Esther Rantzen 16
Paso doble Jill Halfpenny 37 Diarmuid Gavin 17
Samba Jill Halfpenny 35 Roger Black/Sarah Manners/Julian Clary 23
Waltz Denise Lewis 31 Carol Vorderman 22
Quickstep Denise Lewis 38 Diarmuid Gavin 12
Foxtrot Jill Halfpenny 34 Julian Clary 24
Tango Denise Lewis 35 Diarmuid Gavin 14

Series 3

This series ran from 15 October to 17 December 2005. Over five million votes were cast, approximately three million of which were for the eventual champions, Darren Gough and Lilia Kopylova. Over ten and a half million viewers tuned in to the final show, and the whole series raised £1.5 million for Children in Need.

The celebrities that took part in this series were as follows:

Celebrity Professional Voted out
Siobhan Hayes Matthew Cutler Week 1
Jaye Jacobs Andrew Cuerden Week 2
Gloria Hunniford Darren Bennett Week 3
Fiona Phillips Brendan Cole Week 4
Dennis Taylor Izabela Hannah Week 5
Will Thorp Hanna Haarala Week 6
Bill Turnbull Karen Hardy Week 7
Patsy Palmer Anton du Beke Week 8
James Martin Camilla Dallerup Week 9
Zoë Ball Ian Waite Final (third place)
Colin Jackson Erin Boag Final (second place)
Darren Gough Lilia Kopylova Series winners

Series 4

The show ran from 7 October to 23 December 2006. Over 12 million votes were cast, raising £1.5 million for Children in Need. A peak of 13 million viewers tuned in to the final show of series four to see Mark and Karen crowned 2006 Strictly Come Dancing champions.

The couples in order of elimination:

Celebrity Professional Voted out
Nicholas Owen Nicole Cutler Week 1
Jimmy Tarbuck Flavia Cacace Withdraw due to health reasons
Mica Paris Ian Waite Week 2
DJ Spoony Ola Jordan Week 3
Georgina Bouzova James Jordan Week 4
Jan Ravens Anton du Beke Week 5
Ray Fearon Camilla Dallerup Week 6
Peter Schmeichel Erin Boag Week 7
Claire King Brendan Cole Week 8
Carol Smillie Matthew Cutler Week 9
Louisa Lytton Vincent Simone Week 10
Emma Bunton Darren Bennett Week 11 (third place)
Matt Dawson Lilia Kopylova Final (second place)
Mark Ramprakash Karen Hardy Series winners

Series 5

The fifth series of Strictly Come Dancing began on BBC One on 29 September 2007, with Bruce Forsyth and Tess Daly returning as presenters. For the first time, the line up of professionals was unchanged from the previous series. The first programme was a catch-up show and preview to the new series, before the start of the competition on 6 October, which ran for 12 weeks. The show featured 14 new celebrities, who were paired with 14 professional dancers. In a change to the previous format, the results show was recorded on Saturday and broadcast on Sunday, rather than shown live later on Saturday. In addition to this, the two couples who were at the bottom of the table after the viewers' vote were subject to a dance-off, where they reprised their routine, for the judges to decide who left. Head Judge Len Goodman had the casting vote in case of a tie. The series raised just over a million pounds for Children in Need

Celebrity Professional Voted out
Brian Capron Karen Hardy Week 1
Stephanie Beacham Vincent Simone Week 2
Willie Thorne Erin Boag Week 3
Gabby Logan James Jordan Week 4
Dominic Littlewood Lilia Kopylova Week 5
Penny Lancaster Stewart Ian Waite Week 6
Kate Garraway Anton du Beke Week 7
John Barnes Nicole Cutler Week 8
Kelly Brook Brendan Cole Withdrew due to bereavement
Kenny Logan Ola Jordan Week 9
Letitia Dean Darren Bennett Week 10
Gethin Jones Camilla Dallerup Week 11 (third place)
Matt Di Angelo Flavia Cacace Final (second place)
Alesha Dixon Matthew Cutler Series winners

Series 6

A sixth series of the show was confirmed after the dancers' pay dispute was called off in late June 2008. The series lasted for 14 weeks, which is the longest series so far. The series involved three new professional dancers, Brian Fortuna, Hayley Holt and Kristina Rihanoff.

In July 2008 it was reported that current EastEnders cast members were banned from taking part in the competition due to the length of the series.

The sixth series began on 13 September with a behind-the-scenes look at the new series, followed by the first live show on 20 September.

On 19 November 2008, John Sergeant announced that he would be leaving the show because he believed he may "win it".

Celebrity Professional Voted out
Phil Daniels Flavia Cacace Week 1
Gillian Taylforth Anton du Beke Week 2
Gary Rhodes Karen Hardy Week 3
Jessie Wallace Darren Bennett Week 4
Don Warrington Lilia Kopylova Week 5
Mark Foster Hayley Holt Week 6
Andrew Castle Ola Jordan Week 7
Heather Small Brian Fortuna Week 8
Cherie Lunghi James Jordan Week 9
John Sergeant Kristina Rihanoff Withdrew
Jodie Kidd Ian Waite Week 10
Christine Bleakley Matthew Cutler Week 11
Austin Healey Erin Boag Week 12
Lisa Snowdon Brendan Cole Final (third place)
Rachel Stevens Vincent Simone Final (second place)
Tom Chambers Camilla Dallerup Series winners

Series 7

The seventh series of Strictly Come Dancing will start of Friday 18 September and will run until December 2009. Tess Daly has signed a two year deal to continue presenting Strictly Come Dancing for at least the 2009 and 2010 series'.

On 9 July, former competitor Alesha Dixon was confirmed to be joining the judging panel for this series, and that Darcey Bussell would be a guest judge towards the end of the series run. Dixon replaces Arlene Phillips who is moving to The One Show as a Strictly Come Dancing expert. It has been reported in the media that many of the show's professional dancers are furious at Phillips being replaced by Dixon. They apparently feel that they "will be judged by someone who knows less than they do about dancing". Bosses at the BBC have also been accused of sexism, as none of the male judges on the show have been replaced. Dixon's fans are also unhappy as she has had to cancel a number of dates on her autumn tour in order to do the programme.

The official line-up was revealed on 25 August 2009:

Celebrity Professional Voted out
Martina Hingis Matthew Cutler Week 1
Richard Dunwoody Lilia Kopylova Week 2
Rav Wilding Aliona Vilani Week 3
Lynda Bellingham Darren Bennett Week 4
Joe Calzaghe Kristina Rihanoff Week 5
Jo Wood Brendan Cole Week 6
Zöe Lucker James Jordan Week 7
Craig Kelly Flavia Cacace Week 8
Phil Tufnell Katya Virshilas Week 9
Jade Johnson Ian Waite Withdrew due to injury
Ricky Groves Erin Boag Week 10
Natalie Cassidy Vincent Simone Week 11
Ricky Whittle Natalie Lowe
Ali Bastian Brian Fortuna
Chris Hollins Ola Jordan
Laila Rouass Anton du Beke


2004 Christmas Special

This Christmas special was broadcast live on 22 December 2004, featuring top couples from both of the first two series (with the exception of Christopher Parker and Julian Clary, who were not able to appear). The show was won by Jill Halfpenny and Darren Bennett.

In order of judges' placing
Celebrity Professional Place Judges' scores Dance
Martin Offiah Erin Boag 6th 6+6+7+7=26 Jive
Aled Jones Lilia Kopylova 5th 7+7+8+8=30 Samba
Lesley Garrett Anton du Beke 4th 7+8+8+8=31 Waltz
Natasha Kaplinsky Brendan Cole 3rd 7+8+9+9=33 Foxtrot
Denise Lewis Ian Waite 2nd 9+9+9+10=37 Quickstep
Jill Halfpenny Darren Bennett 1st 9+9+9+9=36 Jive

2005 Christmas Special

The Christmas special in 2005 featured the top four couples (Gough/Kopylova, Jackson/Boag, Ball/Waite, Martin/Dallerup) from the 2005 series competing against two competitors from the US version, Dancing with the Stars, who danced with two professionals from the British series. The two competitors from the US series were Rachel Hunter, who was teamed with Brendan Cole, and Evander Holyfield, who danced with Karen Hardy. Season 2 winner Jill Halfpenny was scheduled to appear with her partner Darren Bennett, but pulled out due to a break down in fee negotiations.

24 December 2005, in order of elimination
Celebrity Professional Place Judges' scores Dance
Evander Holyfield Karen Hardy 6th 3+5+7+7=22 Jive
Rachel Hunter Brendan Cole 5th 9+9+9+9=36 Rumba
Colin Jackson Erin Boag 4th 9+8+9+9=35 Cha-Cha-Cha
James Martin Camilla Dallerup 3rd 8+10+10+9=37 Foxtrot
Zoe Ball Ian Waite 2nd 9+9+10+10=38 Foxtrot
Darren Gough Lilia Kopylova 1st 10+10+10+10=40 Quickstep

As well as winning the 2005 series, Darren Gough and Lilia Kopylova won this Christmas Special, after receiving the full 40 marks from the judges.

2006 Christmas Special

The Christmas special in 2006 featured stars from the third and fourth series going head to head to perform their highest-scoring dances. The theme of the programme was black and white, so whether it was wintry white gowns, the little black dress or top hat and tails, the dancers and the dance floor were decked in black and white, setting the stage for some show-stopping performances.

It was a pre-recorded show shown on Christmas Day on BBC One. The couples who took part were:

Celebrity Professional Place Judges' Scores Dance
Matt Dawson Lilia Kopylova - 9+9+10+9=37 Waltz
Louisa Lytton Vincent Simone - 9+9+9+9=36 Jive
Mark Ramprakash Karen Hardy - 9+9+9+9=36 Salsa
Emma Bunton Darren Bennett - 9+9+9+9=36 Samba
Zoe Ball Ian Waite 2nd 9+10+9+10=38 Rumba
Colin Jackson Erin Boag 1st 10+10+10+10=40 Quickstep
After the combined scores of the judges' marks and the votes of the studio audience, Colin Jackson and Erin Boag won the competition, after getting the full 40 marks from the judges, with Zoe Ball and Ian Waite being runners up. The final places of the bottom four couples was not announced - they were eliminated from the competition in a random order.

2007 Christmas Special

The 2007 Christmas Special featured the top four couples from Series Five (Alesha Dixon, Matt Di Angelo, Gethin Jones and Letitia Dean), as well as Darren Gough and Mark Ramprakash (champions of Series Three and Four respectively). The winner was Series Three champion Darren Gough, who received a perfect 40 for his American Smooth, and had the highest score overall when the judges' points were combined with the studio audience vote. Series Five semi-finalist Gethin Jones, who also received a perfect 40 for his Waltz, was runner up. The final place of the bottom four couples was not announced.

It was broadcast on BBC One on Christmas Day (25 December 2007).

Celebrity Professional Place Judges' score Dance
Alesha Dixon Matthew Cutler - 9+9+9+9=36 Cha-cha-cha
Letitia Dean Darren Bennett - 9+9+9+9=36 Foxtrot
Mark Ramprakash Karen Hardy - 9+9+10+10=38 Jive
Matt Di Angelo Flavia Cacace - 9+10+10+10=39 Rumba
Gethin Jones Camilla Dallerup 2nd 10+10+10+10=40 Waltz
Darren Gough Lilia Kopylova 1st 10+10+10+10=40 American Smooth

2008 Christmas Special

The 2008 Christmas Special aired on 25 December 2008. Tom Chambers, Rachel Stevens and Lisa Snowdon took on former contestants Jill Halfpenny, Alesha Dixon and Kelly Brook. Brian Fortuna partnered Brook due to her original partner Brendan Cole dancing with his more recent partner Lisa Snowdon. Russell Watson made a special guest appearance. The celebrities, their professional partners and dance were announced on 17 December 2008. Due to 4 couples coming top of the leader's board with 39 points, head judge Len was given casting vote on how to break the tie. Therefore points from the judge were awarded as follows before the audience vote: Alesha 6, Jill 5, Rachel 4, Kelly 3, Tom 2, Lisa 1. Jill Halfpenny was named the 2008 Christmas Champion with Kelly Brook in second place, meaning that Jill joined Darren Gough in having won two Christmas specials, and her partner Darren Bennett equalled his professional partner and wife Lilia Kopylova's two Christmas special victories.

Celebrity Professional Place Judges' score Dance
Lisa Snowdon Brendan Cole 8+9+9+10=36 Quickstep
Tom Chambers Camilla Dallerup 9+10+9+9=37 Foxtrot
Rachel Stevens Vincent Simone 9+10+10+10=39 Rumba
Alesha Dixon Matthew Cutler 9+10+10+10=39 Viennese Waltz
Kelly Brook Brian Fortuna 2nd 10+9+10+10=39 Jive
Jill Halfpenny Darren Bennett 1st 9+10+10+10=39 American Smooth

The Strictly Come Dancing Story

The Strictly Come Dancing Story was shown on 28 December 2007. While looking back at the last five series of Strictly Come Dancing, it also explained how it came about, showed clips of the original Come Dancing show, highlights from the series one to five, and how the show has transferred to other countries around the world.

Strictly Ice Dancing

Strictly Ice Dancing was broadcast as a one-off special on 26 December 2004; with Carol Smillie, Jessica Taylor, Scarlett Johnson, Marcus Patric, David Seaman, and Rowland Rivron paired with professional skaters. This was won by David Seaman (who was a late replacement for Paul Gascoigne) and his partner Zoia Birmingham.

In order of elimination, the competitors were:
Celebrity Professional Score
Rowland Rivron Charlotte Clements 10
Marcus Patric Leigh Mack 12
Carol Smillie Oula Jääskeläinen 21
Scarlett Johnson Daniel Whiston 22
Jessica Taylor Robert Burgerman 34
David Seaman Zoia Birmingham 33

Strictly Ice Dancing was identical to the Granada format Dancing On Ice, although details of Dancing on Ice were revealed before Strictly Ice Dancing was commissioned.

Strictly African Dancing

A further one-off special was broadcast on BBC One on 9 July 2005 as part of the BBC's Africa Lives season. It featured six celebrities of African descent performing traditional African dances with a professional troupe. The contestants were Tunde Baiyewu, Tupele Dorgu, Robbie Earle, Antonia Okonma, Louis Emerick, and Tessa Sanderson. The programme was presented by Natasha Kaplinsky and Martin Offiah, and the winner was Robbie Earle. Professional dancers Darren Bennett and Lilia Kopylova, who have appeared on Strictly Come Dancing since the second series, also appeared on this special to perform a traditional African Samba.

In order of elimination:

The Live Tour! 2008

Strictly Come Dancing went on tour at the beginning of 2008 for the first time. The tour was hosted by Kate Thornton, and judged by Craig Revel Horwood, Arlene Phillips, & Len Goodman. Bruno Tonioli was not a judge in this competition due to him being in Los Angeles. The tour began on 18 January 2008 in Glasgowmarker and finished on 19 February 2008 in Birminghammarker.

Celebrity dancers taking part were:

The results of the tour are as follows:

Couple Series Number of times as winners Number of times as runners up
Matt Di Angelo and Flavia Cacace 5 16 10
Louisa Lytton and Vincent Simone 4 10 3
Darren Gough and Lilia Kopylova 3 8 10
Zoe Ball and Ian Waite 3 5 14
Letitia Dean and Darren Bennett 5 1 2

Denise Lewis, Christopher Parker, James Martin were not winners or runners up at any stage of the tour .

Let's Dance for Comic Relief

Let's Dance for Comic Relief aired in February and March 2009 in aid for Comic Relief 2009.

The Live Tour! 2009

The Strictly Come Dancing Tour returned in January and February 2009. Kate Thornton returned to host, and all four judges from the TV series took part.

The couples and results of the tour were as follows:

Couple Series Number of times as winners Number of times as runners up
Rachel Stevens and Vincent Simone 6 26 14
Gethin Jones and Flavia Cacace 5 6 6
Kenny Logan and Ola Jordan 5 6 0
Julian Clary and Lilia Kopylova 2 3 13
Jill Halfpenny and Darren Bennett 2 3 9
Tom Chambers and Camilla Dallerup 6 1 2
Cherie Lunghi and James Jordan 6 0 1
Jodie Kidd and Ian Waite 6 0 0

Gethin Jones and Julian Clary were paired with new professional partners - Jones' partner Camilla Dallerup danced with her series six celebrity Tom Chambers, whilst Clary's partner (Erin Boag) did not take part in the tour, as she and her professional partner Anton Du Beke were on their own 'Cheek To Cheek' tour of the UK.

Strictly Come Dancing professionals Matthew Cutler and Kristina Rihanoff also performed a routine together.

The DVD will be released on the 9th November 2009.

Strictly Come Dancing Live Tour 2010

The Strictly Come Dancing Live Tour will be on the road in January and February 2010. Kate Thornton has been confirmed as host.

The Judging Panel will consist of 6 members ;

When Len is absent from the panel (check tour website for dates),the judges will be;

When Arlene is absent from the panel(check tour website for dates),the judges will be;

The tour has already had problems because the professional dancers are not signing for the tour because they are not getting paid enough while their celebrity partners are receiving double the salary.

Strictly Come Dancing The Professionals Tour 2010

It was anounced that

These will take the road for their first own personal tour.

Sport Relief Does Strictly Come Dancing

A Strictly Come Dancing one-off special for Sport Relief aired on 14 March 2008, with Len Goodman, Arlene Phillips and Craig Revel Horwood judging.

The results were as follows:
Ex-Strictly Contestant Celebrity Place Judges' scores Dance
Denise Lewis David Ginola - 7+7+7=21 Waltz
Roger Black Jade Johnson - 8+6+8=22 Cha Cha Cha
Darren Gough Gemma Bissix - 7+7+8=22 American Smooth
Matt Dawson Elaine Paige 2nd 8+9+8=25 Tango
Mark Ramprakash Kara Tointon 1st 9+9+9=27 Samba

The ranking of the bottom three couples was not announced - they were eliminated from the competition in a random order.

A BBC spokesperson commented: "Sport Relief features Strictly Come Dancing with a difference."

Children In Need Special 2008

A Strictly Come Dancing one-off special for Children In Need aired on 14 November 2008, with Fearne Cotton presenting and Len Goodman, Bruno Tonioli, Arlene Phillips and Craig Revel Horwood judging.

The results were as follows:
Professional Dancer Children In Need Host Place Judges' scores Dance
Anton Du Beke Tess Daly 1st 9+9+9+9=36 American Smooth
Flavia Cacace Terry Wogan 2nd 7+8+7+7=29 Waltz

Children in Need 2009

To air during Children in Need 2009 on November 20th, 2009.

The Weakest Link Special 2008

On 27 December 2008, a special episode of The Weakest Link aired on BBC1 featuring participants of Strictly Come Dancing. The game was won by series 6 celebrity Mark Foster, who beat professional dancer Anton Du Beke in the final. Participants in order of elimination were:


  • Waltz (Series 1- ) always week one.

  • Cha Cha (Series 1- ) always week one.

  • Charleston (Series 7- ) performed in week 11 as of series 7.

  • Rumba (Series 1- ) always week two apart from series six it was week 4.

  • Quickstep (Series 1- ) always week 2, apart from in Series 6, it was Week 4, and Series 7, it was week three.

  • Tango (Series 1- ) always week three, apart from series 7 it was week one and two.

  • Jive (Series 1- ) always week three, apart from Series 7 it was 5.

  • Foxtrot (Series 1- ) series 1 to 4 it was week four, series 5, it was week five, series 6, it was week two, Series 7, it was week four.

  • Paso Doble (Series 1- ) series 1 to 4 it was week four, series 5, it was week five, series 6, it was week six, series 7, it was week three.

  • Rock N' Roll (Series 7- ) performed in week 11 as of series 7.

  • Samba (Series 1- ) series 1 to 3 it was week five, series 4, it was week six, series 5, it was week four, series 6, it was week five, series 7, it was 6.

  • American Smooth (Series 3- ) series 3, it was week five, series 4, it was week six, series 5, it was week four, series 6, it was week five, series 7, it was 6.

  • Viennese Waltz (Series 3- ) series 3, it was week six, series 4 it was week five, series 5 to 6, it was week six, series 7, it was 5.

  • Salsa (Series 4- ) series 4, it was week five, series 5, it was week six, series 6, it was week two, series 7, it was week four.

  • Argentine Tango (Series 4- [incase a couple withdraw]) series 4 to 5, it was week eleven, series 6 to 7, it was week 13.

Highest and lowest scoring performances

The best and worst performances in each dance according to the judges' marks are as follows (not including Chrstmas Specials):
Dance Celebrity Highest score Celebrity Lowest score
American Smooth Gethin Jones 38 Andrew Castle 17
Argentine Tango Mark Ramprakash
Rachel Stevens
39 Matt Dawson 30
Cha Cha Cha Lisa Snowdon 40 Quentin Wilson 8
Charleston Ali Bastian 37 Laila Rouass 31
Foxtrot Lisa Snowdon
Rachel Stevens
40 Fiona Phillips
John Sergeant
Joe Calzaghe
Jo Wood

Jive Jill Halfpenny 40 Fiona Phillips 16
Paso Doble Austin Healey 38 Christopher Parker
Dennis Taylor
Quickstep Lisa Snowdon 40 Diarmuid Gavin 12
Rock 'n' Roll Ricky Whittle 31 Natalie Cassidy 26
Rumba Rachel Stevens 39 Fiona Phillips 13
Salsa Mark Ramprakash 40 Kate Garraway 18
Samba Zoe Ball 38 Jo Wood 14
Tango Rachel Stevens 39 Diarmuid Gavin 14
Viennese Waltz Ali Bastian 40 Jo Wood
Will Thorpe
Waltz Matt DiAngelo 40 Fiona Phillips 11


Judges' scores

On nine occasions, a perfect 40 out of 40 has been awarded inside the main series, with series six being the only series to have more than one perfect forty within, including Lisa Snowdon and Brendan Cole who hold the record for most perfect scores with three in the series and Rachel Stevens and Vincent Simone with two perfect scores. All others only received one, usually in the semi-final or final. On another four occasions, a couple scored 40/40 on a Christmas Special. On further fourteen occasions during the main series, couples have received 39. On five occasions in the Christmas Specials, couples were awarded 39/40. There was one special case when three of the judges (Craig Revel Horwood, Arlene Phillips and Bruno Tonioli) all gave a ten but head judge Len Goodman gave an nine.

The lowest that the judges have ever awarded was 8/40 to Quentin Wilson and Hazel Newberry for their Cha Cha Cha.

In addition to the nine perfect scores listed above, judges have awarded perfect tens on a number of other occasions. Rachel Stevens and her partner Vincent Simone hold a record for the most tens with 28 followed by Alesha Dixon and Matthew Cutler with 22 and Lisa Snowdon and Brendan Cole with 21.


Race row

The show regularly draws attention to itself through negative press. The most recent scandal to embroil the show involved professional dancer Anton du Beke, who in an off air conversation, made a joke with racial imagery to his dance partner of Moroccan descent Laila Rouass for which he has subsequently unreservedly apologised. This followed an earlier incident, when he is alleged to have asked her if she is a 'Terrorist'. Whilst both of the people involved insisted that the comments had been intended as humerous banter, the news nevertheless prompted numerous complaints filed by viewers calling for Du Beke to be removed from his position.

Arlene Phillips / Alesha Dixon

The decision to drop Arlene Phillips from the judging line-up for the 2009 series of Strictly Come Dancing led to much criticism being directed at the BBC for its handling of older female television personalities. Accusations resurfaced that the BBC routinely discriminates against women in television based on their age. The most notable examples of purported age discrimination in the BBC include the release of newsreader Moira Stewart in 2007 and the retirement of Anna Ford in 2006. Other high profile BBC personalities such as Selina Scott and Kate Adie have also accused the BBC of age discrimination towards women. The axing of Arlene Phillips has led to an unprecedented intervention from the government's Minister for Women and Equality, Harriet Harman. During a session in the House of Commonsmarker, Harman responded to questions stating that she believed the decision to drop Arlene Phillips was motivated by age discrimination and called on the BBC to ensure that she would be taking part in the new series. The BBC has not formally responded to this request, but has repeated its comments that the decision was not due to age. The appointment of Alesha Dixon to the judging panel prompted 5000 complaints to the BBC, and her judging debut was met with hostility amongst viewers and tabloids alike.

Phone voting

In December 2008 the show hit the headlines when viewers were able to register telephone votes for a couple that effectively they could not save from the dance off irrespective of how many public votes were cast in their favour. Tom Chambers and Camilla Dallerup could not mathematically survive given the scoring system, however viewers were invited to call in to save their favourites at a cost of 35p per vote. The BBC did not offer a refund service. The same problem emerged later on in the series' Christmas special.

Further doubts were raised about the telephone voting system, when 2009 contestant Rav Wilding was eliminated from the competition in week 3. Despite having already been in the dance off the previous week, Rav Wilding claimed that a problem with the phone lines meant that he lost votes that could have saved him from having to compete again in the dance-off. Despite the claims, both the BBC and the telephone company strongly denied that there were any problems with the phone lines.


Series Series Première Series Finale
Date Viewers Date Viewers
1 15 May 2004 4.61m 3 July 2004 9.28m
2 23 October 2004 6.54m 11 December 2004 11.60m
3 15 October 2005 7.23m 17 December 2005 10.55m
4 7 October 2006 9.23m 23 December 2006 12.11m
5 6 October 2007 7.68m 22 December 2007 12.09m
6 20 September 2008 8.48m 20 December 2008 12.21m
7 18 September 2009 8.44m 19 December 2009 TBA


The show has won a highly prestigious Rose D'Or award for 'Best Variety Show', beating off competition from reality shows from twelve other different countries. It has also won two awards for 'Best Reality Show' at the TRIC Awards and two at the TV Quick Awards for 'Best Talent Show'. It has also received three BAFTA nominations.

The show won the award of 'Most Popular Talent Show' at the 2008 National Television Awards.

See also


  1. Eventually, the show did return to the Tower Ballroom, for the episode that aired live on 7 November 2009.
  2. Strictly Come Dancing Vote BBC. Retrieved 18 October 2008.
  3. [1] Digital Spy. Retrieved 12 August 2009.
  4. | title=Strictly reveals dancing line-up | publisher=BBC | date=2009-08-25
  5. Daily Mail article about potential replacement of Phillips and accusations of ageism by the BBC

External links

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