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Strictly’s most iconic performances – from Ann Widdecombe to Jay McGuiness

Strictly Come Dancing has become a national treasure of British television since first appearing on our screens back in 2004. This years line-up includes Loose Women’s Judi Love and

As the new series prepares to air this Saturday on BBC One, let’s look back at some of Strictly’s most iconic dances over the years.

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Ed Balls’ Gangnam style Salsa

Ed Balls’ Salsa to Korean pop star PSY’s Gangnam Style is one for the remember, perhaps for all the wrong reasons.

Politician Ed shed his straight-laced serious image forever after this performance with Russian dancer Katya Jones. Viewers at home thought the routine was hilarious and it’s obvious that Ed had a lot of fun performing it.

The judges however didn’t seem as impressed and scored Ed 25 meaning he was at the bottom of the leader board that week.

Ashley Roberts’ Contemporary Dance

Ashley Roberts and Pasha Kovalev photo call for Strictly Come Dancing tour

Ashley was a fantastic dancer on the show but viewers didn’t warm to Ashley after accusing her of having dance experience through her time as a member of girl band and dance troupe The Pussycat Dolls.

She was consistently in the bottom two despite high scores from the judges and they kept her in the competition. She made it all the way to the final where she performed this stunning contemporary dance with partner Pasha Kovalev.

The dance moved judge Shirley Ballas to tears and Ashley dedicated the performance to her late father who took his own life a few months before her Strictly appearance in 2018.

Harry Judd’s Quickstep

McFly’s Harry Judd absolutely stormed the dancefloor in 2011 with partner Aliona Vilani and scored consistently high throughout the competition. Harry was a front-runner rivalled only by Neighbours actor Jason Donovan who finished in third place.

During the live Strictly final in Blackpool, Harry amazed the judges with an incredible quickstep which scored him a perfect 40 from the judges. The performance won over viewers who voted Harry as the winner of the show and he lifted the trophy with Aliona.

Abbey Clancy’s Waltz

Model Abbey Clancy – wife of former England striker Peter Crouch – dazzled the judges from week one of the 2013 series of Strictly.

Together with professional partner Aljaž Škorjanec, they became the first couple to score a perfect 40 on their series during Musicals Week.

Abbey was particularly gifted with the ballroom routines and her waltz showcased her skills beautifully. She performed the waltz during week one and scored an incredible 32. She then performed it again in the final which scored her a 40.

Faye Tozer’s Jazz

Faye Tozer, Giovanni Pernice
Faye Tozer, Giovanni Pernice

Steps singer Faye Tozer had a number of fantastic performances including her Charleston during Musicals Week and her Argentine Tango, but it was her routine during Halloween week where Faye really shone through.

With partner Giovanni Pernice, Faye performed a Jazz routine which scored her 39 points during week six of the competition. The flawless routine was then performed again in the final which saw Faye score three perfect 40’s for all her routines and she finished in second place.

Jay McGuiness’ Jive

Jay McGuiness sealed his fate as a Strictly champion by performing a Pulp Fiction themed Jive during week three of the 2015 series of Strictly.

He and partner Aliona Vilani blew the judges away and he scored 37 points, the highest week 3 score in the history of the competition.

His routine is still talked about today and has over 6.3 million views on YouTube.

John Sergeant’s Paso Doble

John Sergeant competed on Strictly in 2008 and was paired with new professional dancer Kristina Rihanoff. He was a huge hit with viewers who kept keeping him in the show.

Eventually, John controversially withdrew from the show when it looked like he might actually win.

He did however give an unforgettable Paso Doble performance in week six of the competition which saw him bizarrely drag Kristina across the dancefloor. The moment has gone down in Strictly history.

Danny Mac’s Samba

BBC handout photo of Oti Mabuse and Danny Mac during the dress rehearsal
BBC handout photo of Oti Mabuse and Danny Mac during the dress rehearsal

Danny Mac amazed viewers when he performed a brilliant Samba routine during week 10 of the 2016 series of the show with partner Oti Mabuse.

Danny had scored consistently high with his routines and this dance earned him a perfect 40 from the judges. Danny sailed all the way to the final where he delighted viewers at home and performed the routine again. He earned a second perfect 40 for the routine.

He finished in second place behind eventual winner Ore Oduba and partner Joanne Clifton.

Ann Widdecombe’s Tango

It wasn’t Ann’s dancing that makes this routine iconic, but the fact that she literally flew onto the dancefloor to perform her routine.

In week four of the show, politician Ann performed a Tango with partner Anton Du Beke which saw her fly onto the dancefloor to begin her performance as Anton held a rose in his mouth. The dance was actually Ann’s highest scoring dance on the show with a score of 21.

Unimpressed Craig Revel Horwood gave Ann a three for her dance but viewers at home couldn’t get enough of it.

Bill Bailey’s Street dance

Bill Bailey made Strictly history in 2020 when he became the oldest ever winner of the show.

Bill emerged as a serious contender when he performed an iconic street dance with partner Oti Mabuse in week four of the show. They danced to Sugarhill Gang’s Rappers Delight and Bill surprised the judges – who scored him 27 – and viewers at home with his stamina and rhythm.

The dance also saw Bill get his first ten on the show.

He made it to the final where he performed the routine again which scored him 29.

Georgia May Foote’s Rumba

Georgia May Foote and her dance partner Giovanni Pernice during a dress rehearsal
Georgia May Foote and her dance partner Giovanni Pernice during a dress rehearsal

Coronation Street actress Georgia May Foote had a few stand-out routines including her Charleston but it was this Rumba with partner Giovanni Pernice which set pulses racing.

Week three of the competition saw Georgia perform a sultry James Bond themed Rumba – a notoriously difficult dance – during Movie Week. The sizzling routine earned her a score of 27.

A Rumba is a dance that is rarely seen on Strictly nowadays due to it’s difficulty however Georgia made it look effortless as her chemistry with Giovanni shone through.

Emma Barton’s Charleston

Eastender’s actress Emma Barton absolutely perfected her Charleston routine during Musicals week back in the 2019. With Anton Du Beke as her partner, Emma made it all the way to the final where she narrowly missed out on the trophy.

Emma looked every inch the perfect flapper girl when she performed her Charleston and the judges gave her a score of 39. She enjoyed the routine so much that she performed it again in the final which scored her a 39 again.

Simon Webbe’s Argentine Tango

Blue singer Simon Webbe danced his way to the Strictly final with partner Kristina Rihanoff in 2014. However during Blackpool week, Simon performed an amazing Argentine Tango routine which wowed the judges. They scored him 37 for the dance.

Argentine Tango’s are known to be a difficult dance for celebrity contestants however Simon is among the few who performed it brilliantly.

Simon performed the the difficult routine again in the Strictly final where he scored a perfect 40 on the show.

Tom Chambers’ Showdance

TOM CHAMBERS AND CAMILLA DALLERUP - 2008 winners of Strictly Come Dancing during showcase dance
TOM CHAMBERS AND CAMILLA DALLERUP – 2008 winners of Strictly Come Dancing during showcase dance

Holby City actor Tom Chambers had pleased viewers throughout the 2008 series of Strictly with his dazzling routines with partner Camilla Dallerup.

After making it to the final, Tom performed a showdance which has gone down in Strictly history. The dance showcased Tom’s newfound dancing skills as Camilla stepped back and allowed him to perform many dance moves on his own.

The dance was not scored by judges as the showdance back then was merely meant to allow the couples to enjoy one last routine in the final rather than have it scored.

Mark Ramprakash’s Salsa

Mark Ramprakash had a particular flare for the Latin dances on Strictly when he competed on the show in 2006 with professional dancer Karen Hardy. He was top of the leader board throughout his time on Strictly.

Their Salsa in week five of the show impressed the judges and viewers at home and earned Mark a score of 36. He performed the saucy routine again in the final which gave him a score of 40.

Together they made it all the way to the final of the show and lifted the glitterball trophy together.

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Strictly Come Dancing 2021 starts on Saturday September 18 at 7.45pm on BBC One.



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