Strictly Come Dancing series six – begins Saturday 13 September, 6.30pm, BBC One; first live show at 6.10pm on 20 September
Saturday and Sunday nights on BBC One
It Takes Two: weeknights on BBC Two
BBC One puts the sparkle back into the weekend as Bruce Forsyth and Tess Daly return to our screens this autumn for the fabulous sixth
series of Strictly Come Dancing.
Last year over 12 million people tuned in to the live dance
extravaganza to witness Alesha Dixon and Matt Di'Angelo battle it
out in the final to be crowned Strictly Come Dancing champion
2007. In the end, it was Alesha who took the coveted title.
2008 looks set to be even more exciting with 16 new contestants –
two more than last year – all warming up for their first showdown.
After months of speculation, the BBC is delighted to announce that
taking part in Strictly Come Dancing this year are:
For the women –
For the men –
TV presenter Christine Bleakley will be dancing with Matthew
Cutler; model and TV presenter Jodie Kidd dances with Ian Waite;
actress Cherie Lunghi is partnered by James Jordan; singer Rachel
Stevens is joined by Vincent Simone; singer Heather Small will be
dancing with new professional Brian Fortuna; TV presenter and
model Lisa Snowdon will be dancing with Brendan Cole. Actress
Gillian Taylforth is joined by Anton du Beke, and actress Jessie
Wallace dances with Darren Bennett.
For the men, TV presenter Andrew Castle will dance with Ola
Jordan; actor Tom Chambers is partnered by Camilla Dallerup; actor
Phil Daniels dances with Flavia Cacace and Olympic swimmer Mark
Foster dances with new professional Hayley Holt. Rugby star
Austin Healey is partnered by Erin Boag; chef Gary Rhodes is
joined by Karen Hardy; political broadcaster and journalist John
Sergeant dances with new professional Kristina Rihanoff and actor
Don Warrington joins Lilia Kopylova on the dance floor.
Judges Len Goodman, Craig Revel Horwood, Arlene Phillips and Bruno
Tonioli also return to cast a professional eye over the
Commenting on the new series Bruce Forsyth says: "The show is
bigger than ever with 16 contestants. It's going to need stamina
as well as style to become this year's champion.
"People often ask
me to predict who'll win and I never do, but I've got a sixth
sense about the sixth series. The winner will be a man… or a
Tess Daly says: "Strictly Come Dancing is probably one of the best
things that's ever happened to me.
"Imagine a job where you've got
a ringside seat at the best show in town, you get to wear the
poshest of frocks and work alongside the legend that is Bruce
"Going to work is like a home from home and the Strictly
team, from the cameramen and soundmen to the judges and the
professional dancers are like an extended family and many have
"In fact, Strictly has become a real family affair
for me and dinner at our house from now until Christmas will be in
front of the telly with Claudia on It Takes Two."
She continues: "Everyone I talk to, from kids to grandparents, ask
me about the show and once the series starts it's the main topic
of conversation wherever I go, all anyone wants to talk about is
Strictly and I love it.
"So here's to our sixth series being more
exciting, dynamic and captivating than ever, I hope you enjoy it
as much as we do.
"And remember, 'Keep dancing!' I bet Brucie beat
me to that bit!"
From the off, the couples will face the judges and the public vote.
In week one, one male dancer will exit after performing
either a waltz or a cha cha cha, whilst the girls strut their
stuff in a group dance.
In week two, one female dancer will exit after performing
a salsa or foxtrot, whilst the men perform a group number.
In week three, another male dancer will exit and the
female dancers will perform another group number.
In week four, another female dancer will go and the male
dancers will perform another group number.
From week five onwards, all couples compete together in a bid to
impress the judges and the audience at home to stay out of the
bottom two places on the leaderboard.
Those two couples will have
to face the dreaded dance-off and, as last year, the judges will
decide whose dancing days are over.
In the event of a tie, head
judge Len Goodman will have the casting vote.
Those who can't wait for the weekend can get their daily fix on
BBC Two, when Claudia Winkleman returns with Strictly Come Dancing – It Takes Two.
She will bring viewers exclusive interviews,
backstage gossip and footage from the training sessions, and once
again bbc.co.uk/strictlycomedancing will have up-to-the-minute information on the show.
Tess says: "Don't forget, you can catch up with all the behind-the-scenes gossip and after-show action from the BBC bar – never a
dull moment there! – in my Strictly blog, every Monday on our