Strictly Come Dancing 2010: Conducting the live band

Friday 10 September 2010, 18:01

Dave Arch Dave Arch Musical Director

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Well, here we are back again in Studio One at BBC Television Centre for my fifth series conducting the live band on Strictly Come Dancing, after taking over from the great Laurie Holloway.

This year looks like it's going to be a good one, judging by the launch show. The new set looks amazing - it's so big, I don't know how it fits in to the studio, and even the band pit area is a bit bigger (most unusual!).

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My first task prior to the show was to decide, along with Tony Revell (the sound supervisor), how the guys in the band were going to be set up. I need to have a sight line to everyone, and Tony has sound considerations, especially placing the drum kit and so on. Hopefully we have come up with something that will work.

I have put together more or less the same band and personnel as last year, comprising of 15 musicians and four singers on this show. Depending on the material we have to cover, I'll be tweaking the line up through the series, but by and large, the instrumentation will stay the same.

For the first show we have five main routines to play, including one featuring all the dancers and their new partners. Now I know who the celebrities are, I think the competition will be fierce and the characters very entertaining.

I am really looking forward to when the live shows kick off in October. I only need to write 14 arrangements before then... now where did I put my manuscript paper?

Dave Arch is the musical director on Strictly Come Dancing and conducts the live band.

Series eight of Strictly Come Dancing begins on Saturday, 11 September at 6.25pm on BBC One and BBC HD.

Please visit the upcoming episodes page to check programme times.

You can read more on the origins of Strictly Come Dancing from head of BBC History Robert Seatter on the About The BBC blog.

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