Here you’ll find out more about BBC One Strictly Come Dancing’s Karen Hauer and Kevin Clifton. Learn about Hauer on this year’s series of Strictly, and discover how you could soon be dancing with Karen!
Updated 2nd January 2024
Strictly Finalist 2020 – Karen Hauer is the longest-serving professional dancer on Strictly Come Dancing.
Karen is a renowned Venezuelan-born dancer, choreographer, and television personality. Since her early years, she has been passionate about the arts and performance, a passion that led her to her illustrious career in dance. Karen has become a staple in the world of ballroom and Latin dancing, gaining widespread recognition for her roles on television shows and competitions.
In 2023 Karen partnered Multi-award winning stand-up comedian and radio presenter Eddie Kadi.
Karen Hauer latest news – Karen and Eddie’s Samba in week 5 was fun but lacked the technique the judges were looking for. Sadly, from achieving the first 10 of the series in week 2 they were evicted in week 5.
In 2022 Karen partnered Comedian, actor and presenter Jayde Adams. In week 5 Karen and Jayde performed a cheeky Charleston to ‘The Ballad Of Barry and Freda (Let’s Do It)’ by Victoria Wood (BBC Comedy – Victoria Wood).
In 2021 Karen partnered Stage and Screen legend Greg Wise. The 2020 series of Strictly saw Karen partner Made in Chelsea Star Jamie Laing all the way to the Strictly Finals.
As a multi-talented Mambo champion, Karen joined Strictly Come Dancing in 2012
Karen – Strictly Finalist 2020 & 2014 & Semi-Finalist 2019
Kevin Clifton made his Strictly debut in 2013 reaching the final with BBC Breakfast presenter Susanna Reid.
Strictly Champion Kevin Clifton was a pro dancer on the show for 7 years.
As one of the few British dancers on the TV show, Kevin was often referred to by the legendary Sir Bruce Forsyth as “Kevin from Grimsby!”
In 2018 Kevin was paired with Stacey Dooley and they went on to win. Their successful partnership didn’t end there as they became a couple and recently announced that they are expecting a baby.
In 2020 Kevin made the decision not to return to Strictly.
As well as dancing on Strictly, both have been principal dancers in the hugely successful West End show, ‘Burn the Floor’.
Learn all about Kevin & Karen’s dancing achievements, dance partners, relationships, awards, photos, facts, age, height, and read their latest news, announcements and tours below
Who better to teach you to dance than Strictly Professionals Karen Hauer & dance partner Gorka Marquez.
Not only can you learn to dance with these amazing professional dancers but you’ll hear all the back stage gossip from the latest series, plus see them perform their stunning dance showcase for you up close and personal.
Spend the weekend with your favourite stars of Strictly Come Dancing at the stunning 5* Celtic Manor Resort in South Wales
Join Gorka & Karen, Kai & Nadiya, Janette & Aljaz, Katya, Leandro & Maria, Glenn & Caroly, Warren & Kristi plus The Tony Greenwood 15-piece Big Band.
‘Is it me or do Donahey’s run the best dance weekends in the country….Kevin Clifton
‘What an incredible event, we loved every second of it. So much on offer from all the Strictly couples & classes, we love being part of it. Kevin Clifton
‘Superb night at Alton Towers. Thank you for letting Kevin and I be part of this fabulous event. Lots of love x’ Karen Hauer
Having trained as a dancer and choreographer Karen Hauer has had an amazing career working with some of the biggest stars in the world, including Jennifer Lopez.
Karen was a new professional dancer on Strictly for 2012, wowing viewers and judges with celebrity partner Westlife heart throb, Nicky Byrne. The eleventh series of Strictly saw Karen partner TV Chef and Hairy Biker Dave Myers. In 2014 Karen partnered TV presenter Mark Wright all the way to the finals. In 2015 Karen partnered Jeremy Vine all the way to week 8, and in 2016 Karen partnered singer Will Young.
As a competitive dancer Karen has won so many awards she’s lost count! Some of her biggest achievements include World Mambo Champion in 2008 and Professional American Rhythm Rising Star Champion in 2009.
41 years old (born 20th April 1982)
Karen stands at 1.65m tall
In June 2022, Karen secretly married Jordan Wyn-Jones in a fairytale wedding. Karen & Jordan announced their split in October 2023.
Karen started dancing at age eight when she moved to New York. By age 10 she’d won a scholarship to the Martha Graham School of Contemporary Dance and studied African, Contemporary Dance and Ballet. But it was at age 19 when she found her true calling and began focusing on Ballroom and Latin American dance. During her career she’s accrued many titles including World Mambo Champion in 2008 and Professional American Rhythm Rising Star Champion in 2009. She also appeared on season 6 of the US show, ‘So You Think You Can Dance’ in 2009. In 2012 she joined the cast of Strictly, and was the principal dancer in the West End Show, ‘Burn the Floor’ in 2013. In fact, she’s had an amazing career working with some of the biggest stars in the world, including Jennifer Lopez. Lucky girl.
Multi-award winning stand-up comedian and radio presenter Eddie Kadi
Known worldwide as a towering figure in stand-up comedy, Eddie Kadi, hailing from British-Congolese descent, is a force to be reckoned with in the comedy sphere. His performances resonate on a global scale, crossing cultural and geographical boundaries to entertain massive audiences. Notably, he broke ground as the first black British comedian to headline London’s iconic O2 Arena, solidifying his unique, high-octane brand of entertainment and amassing a continually expanding international following.
Eddie’s global clout extends to his roles as the official red carpet host for both BET International and BET Africa in Los Angeles. He also graces the main stage as the host of Afro Nation Festivals worldwide.
He has been the emcee at the esteemed MOBO Awards and has made appearances on a wide array of television programs such as Blankety Blank, The National Comedy Awards, Tonight with Target, and more. As a radio personality, Eddie leads The Official Afrobeats Chart Show on BBC Radio 1Xtra, and he’s a Team Captain on ITV’s entertainment program, Sorry I Didn’t Know.
This year, Eddie is in the running for some of the industry’s top accolades: the Royal Television Society’s Best Breakthrough Award and the Best Breakthrough Presenter at the Edinburgh TV Awards. Currently, he is working on a documentary project in collaboration with Channel 4.
On joining Strictly, Eddie said: “WOW. Anyone who knows me, understands that music and dance is so important and central to who I am. I’m so unbelievably proud and honoured that Strictly and the BBC have asked me to join the 2023 Team. I promise you, I’m going to give it everything I’ve got. This is going to be a VIBE.”
In Movie week – Karen and Eddie performed the first Couples Choice of the series to Men In Black and clearly impressed Shirley who awarded the first 10 of the series and it was only week 2!
Gorka Marquez – they can be seen in spectacular showcases together at Donahey’s Dancing With The Stars Weekends
It’s definitely a Latin number!
Karen bounced onto the Strictly dance floor back in 2012, making Karen the longest-serving female pro.
Karen’s dance partners on Strictly include; Comedian, actor and presenter Jayde Adams, Greg Wise, Jamie Laing, Nicky Byrne, Dave Myers, Mark Wright, Jeremy Vine, Will Young, Simon Rimmer, Charles Venn and Chris Ramsey.
Jamie Laing had previously made his Strictly debut in 2019 with Katya Jones, but due to an injury in the opening group number Jamie bowed out of the competition. Together Jamie & Karen made it all the way to the 2020 Strictly Finals, performing some stunning routines together.
Hard to believe, but no. Like so many of the uber-talented pro dancers, Karen has yet to nab the glitter ball. However, she did reach the final with Made in Chelsea star Jamie Laing in 2020, and former TOWIE star, Mark Wright, back in 2014 plus lifted the Children in Need Strictly trophy with Team GB Olympian, Lutalo Muhammad, in 2016.
Find out who has won BBC Strictly Come Dancing with our full list of past Strictly winners from 2004 here – Strictly Winners
Yes. In series 17 Karen’s wig attached itself to Chris Ramsey’s fetching tights during their Samba to Everybody (Backstreet’s Back) by Backstreet Boys in Halloween Week, but ever the consummate pro, Karen styled it out. Also in 2017 her pesky underwear was wreaking havoc during an episode of BBC2’s ‘It Takes Two’ and caused her to exclaim, ‘oh, my bra is down!’
Learn more about Karen’s dancing profile on her official BBC Strictly Come Dancing profile page.
Kevin Clifton is former Youth World Number 1 and four times British Latin Champion, an amazing achievement for a youngster from Lincolnshire. He trained in ballroom and Latin from an early age, taught by his parents, former World Champions Keith and Judy Clifton.
As the son of Keith and Judy Clifton, of Cliftons Dance Academy it’s not surprising that Kevin followed in his parent’s footsteps as a professional dancer, having started dancing aged just four years old. His career went from strength to strength and he is now a British and International Ballroom Champion. Kevin’s sister Joanne Clifton is a current World Champion Ballroom dancer with her partner Paolo Bosco.
Kevin’s first series of Strictly Come Dancing was in 2014, when he partnered BBC Breakfast Presenter Susanna Reid all the way to the SCD Grand Final.
Kevin had previously worked on Strictly Come Dancing as an assistant choreographer and up until recently was a principal dancer in Burn the Floor in London’s West End along side his then fiancée and dance partner Karen Hauer.
Kevin retired from competition dancing to follow his dreams of dancing on stage and screen and this career change led him to meet professional partner Karen when they both appeared in stage sensation, “Burn The Floor”. As well as performing in “Burn The Floor”, Kevin’s star credentials include appearing in the stage adaptation of “Dirty Dancing” and being the British Latin American Champion.
40 years old (born 13th October 1982)
Kevin stands at 1.65m tall
Grimsby of course…in Lincolnshire
Sadly in 2020 Kevin announced he was hanging his Strictly dance shoes up, we’ll miss him from the show.
Kevin is currently dating his 2018 celebrity partner Stacey Dooley.
Kevin and Stacey are expecting their first baby in Spring 2023, we wish them both good luck.
Kevin comes from good dancing stock. His parents, Keith and Judy Clifton, who are former World Champions taught him Ballroom and Latin dancing at a young age. During his career he has earned the titles of Youth World Number 1, four-time British Latin Champion, and British and International Ballroom Champion. He’s also won International Open titles across the globe in Hong Kong, Japan, Taiwan, Singapore, Spain, Finland, Italy, Germany, Belgium, Portugal, France, Sweden, Slovakia and Slovenia. Before taking to the Strictly dance floor in 2013, Kevin worked on the show as an assistant choreographer. He also appeared in the stage adaptation of ‘Dirty Dancing’ in 2010 and was the principal dancer in the West End show, ‘Burn the Floor’, where he met Karen.
Definitely the Jive.
He joined way back in 2013 and was quickly given the nickname, ‘Kevin from Grimsby’ by Sir Bruce Forsyth.
Kevin’s sister Joanne Clifton quickly followed, joining Strictly Come Dancing in 2014
Kevin’s dance partners on Strictly include; Susanna Reid, Frankie Bridge, Kellie Bright, Louise Redknapp, Susan Calman, Stacey Dooley and Anneka Rice
Yes, finally! Strictly Come Dancing Glitterball Winner 2018
Kevin won Strictly in 2018 with his celeb partner, Stacey Dooley. Prior to that Kevin made the final every year from 2013, apart from 2017 when he only achieved 7th place with Susan Calman & 2019 when he got knocked out in week 3 with Anneka Rice.
Kevin won the 2019 Strictly Children In Need Special with Eastenders actress Maisie Smith and the 2019 Strictly Christmas Special with partner Debbie McGee
Kevin has starred in many touring musicals & shows including Burn The Floor and Singing In The Rain.
Kevin is currently touring the UK in Baz Lurhmans smash hit show Strictly Ballroom The Musical.
Directed by Britain’s best loved TV Judge Craig Revel Horwood, and choreographed by Jason Gilkinson, Strictly Ballroom: The Musical follows arrogant, rebellious young ballroom dancer, Scott Hastings (Kevin Clifton). When his radical and daring dance style sees him fall out of favour with Australian Federation, he must dance with beginner, Fran (Maisie Smith). Together they find the courage to defy tradition and discover that to win, your steps don’t need to be strictly ballroom!
When Kevin was on Strictly Come Dancing, he was affectionately known as Kevin from Grimsby – titled by Sir Bruce Forsyth himself.
Well, not so much a wardrobe malfunction, but those swishy red trousers he wore for his Samba with Frankie Bridge in 2014 were a sight to behold. Sorry, Kev.
Learn more about Kevin’s dancing profile on his official BBC Strictly Come Dancing profile page.
Photos © BBC UK
Find out more information about the BBC TV programme Strictly Come Dancing
by checking out the BBC Strictly Come Dancing website
Donahey’s Dance Lessons & 4* UK Weekend Breaks are not associated with the BBC.
Find out all about Karen & Gorka Marquez’s 2023 Firedance Live tour
Find out all about Karen Hauer 2024 Tour Strictly Professionals
Find out all about Kevin Clifton’s lead role in Strictly Ballroom The Musical Tour
Learn more about all your favourite Strictly Pro’s here;
– Aljaz Skorjanec
– Amy Dowden
– Dianne Buswell
– Giovanni Pernice
– Gorka Marquez
– Graziano di Prima
– Janette Manrara
– Johannes Radebe
– Jowita Przystal
– Kai Widdrington
– Karen Hauer
– Katya Jones
– Luba Mushtuk
– Nadiya Bychkova
– Nancy Xu
– Neil Jones
– Nikita Kuzmin
– Jowita Przystal
– Lauren Oakley
– Oti Mabuse