Saturdays Strictly launch show wasn’t short of glitz, glamour and fake tan, as Starship Strictly landed on our screens for the start of another fantastic series.
More than 10 million people tuned in to the launch night on BBC1, the biggest audience yet for an opening episode of the show. But don’t worry if you missed the show, we have all you need to know about this year’s celebrities and which professional dancer they are partnered with right here.
The show kicked off with four glamorous ladies being introduced to their dance partners, as the male professionals looked on with wide grins on their faces. Singer and TV presenter Louise Redknapp, wore a shimmering pink dress as she was paired with Kevin Clifton. Next up was BBC Breakfast’s, Naga Munchetty who will be sharing her sparkling Strictly journey with Pasha Kovalev. Anastacia, a singer-songwriter from across the pond, will be hitting the dance floor with Strictly legend Brendan Cole, who has appeared on every series since the beginning, and presenter, Laura Whitmore will be getting her groove on with Giovanni Pernice.
After an exotic ‘Rio inspired’ pro dance which introduced us to this year’s new pro dancers, four male contestants were partnered up. Radio DJ and TV presenter, Melvin Odoom announced himself to be a “pocket rocket” as he was paired with Janette Manrara. Olympic long-jumper Greg Rutherford will be jumping into his Strictly journey with Natalie Lowe, while Judge Rinder is hoping to put an end to Craig’s harsh words with his professional partner and Strictly newby, Oksana Platero. Actor, Danny Mac will be swapping the Hollyoaks set for the Strictly ballroom with dance partner,Oti Mabuse.
Following the return of last year’s winners, Jay and Aliona, who performed their memorable Jive for the final time, the remaining female celebrities met their Strictly match. Olympic gymnast, Claudia Fragapane will be dancing her way through the series with Strictly’s youngest ever male professional, newcomer, AJ Pritchard. Model, Daisy Lowe looked as glamorous as ever in a stunning red dress as she was partnered with Aljaz Skorjanec. Lesley Joseph, actress best known for starring in sitcom, Birds of a Feather, is hoping to shimmy her way to the final with Strictly legend, Anton Du Beke, while Eastenders actress, Tameka Empson found a ‘corker’ in new professional, Gorka Marquez.
Finally, the remaining three male celebrities were introduced to their professional partners. Sports presenter, Ore Oduba will be dancing with returning professional, Joanne Clifton, Former Shadow Chancellor, Ed Balls is hoping to win a seat in the final with newby, Katya Jones, and singer, Will Young will be dancing the night away with the one and only Karen Clifton!
The hopeful contestants now have three weeks to perfect their first Strictly dance before the next shows, which will air on the 23rd and 24th of September.
4* Weekend Breaks with the stars of Strictly Come Dancing
Who better to teach you to dance than the professional dancers from Strictly Come Dancing? You can meet the stars, learn their steps and be captivated as they perform spectacular shows just for you.
Strictly Come Dancing 2016 pairings – Celebrity and their Professional Dancer
Claudia Fragapane and AJ Pritchard
Daisy Lowe and Aljaž Skorjanec
Lesley Joseph and Anton Du Beke
Anastacia and Brendan Cole
Laura Whitmore and Giovanni Pernice
Melvin Odoom and Janette Manrara
Ore Oduba and Joanne Clifton
Will Young and Karen Clifton
Louise Redknapp and Kevin Clifton
Greg Rutherford and Natalie Lowe
Danny Mac and Oti Mabuse
Naga Munchetty and Pasha Kovalev
Tameka Empson and Gorka Marquez
Ed Balls and Katya Jones
Judge Rinder and Oksana Platero