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Exclusive Backstage Gallery - Semi-Final #2

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BBC Eurovision Andrew BBC Eurovision Andrew | 15:29 UK time, Saturday, 11 December 2010

Here are our exclusive backstage pictures from tonight's second semi-final show. Enjoy!

Matt Baker and Aliona VIlani
Kara Tointon in the Strictly Come Dancing dress rehearsal
Gavin Henson and Katya Virshilas
The five remaining Strictly Come Dancing couples take to the dancefloor in the dress rehearsal
Costumes from the second Strictly Come Dancing semi final show



  • Comment number 1.

    the jimi effect must not strike matt

    don't let the fact that he's in a pinstriped suit mean that he goes out!!!

    *calms down*

    good luck everyone but of course matt the most!!!

    if the 3 bitter lemons (pop over to the mattiona blog if you don't understand that) are unfair to matt again tonight there will be a lot of shouting...but i shall keep in mind WWMS at all times

    ...silly lemons


  • Comment number 2.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 3.

    Do wonder what has happened to Pam's centurion outfit shown on ITT earlier & why Katya is wearing a Gloria Hunniford dress?

  • Comment number 4.

    For me, only one couple this series have performed routines that make me want to go to iplayer and watch all over again and they are Matt and Aliona. They are just so entertaining and I can't help feeling that the judges have ben really hard on them throughout the series.

  • Comment number 5.

    Gavin and Scott must go tonight or the show will have lost credibility.

    Strictly has survived Alesha Dixon as judge and the Ann Widdecombe farce, the loss of Lilia, props, no dance off, bad choice of music to the dances and the manic swingathon but it will not survive the bad judging and exit of Matt if he goes tonight.

    The show will lose millions of loyal viewers if that happens. That will be the straw that breaks the camel's back.

  • Comment number 6.

    I think the judges have their favourite, and Len has gone down a bit in my estimation, after the unfair treatment of Matt, the last couple of weeks, the comments were not justified, and I could almost see the confidence seep out of him, shame on the judges!!
    Will just have to vote for Matt a lot more....and kara

  • Comment number 7.

    Come on guys. PLEASE don't let Matt go out tonight. Vote, vote , vote for him to show what he can do in the final. He really deserves his place.

  • Comment number 8.

    thank you to all the earlier posters on this thread with lovely comments of Matt. TEAM MATTIONA are feeling very positive....but all good wishes are very much appreciated.................

  • Comment number 9.

    Cant wait Cant wait!!!! Such Drama poor Matt but judges spoke the truth last night...... I feel weak choreography and poor song choice!!! Who chose that music I mean really semi final salsa and they got Kylie
    spinning around.....I smell a rat. Aliona is not a popular professional I feel all judges comments were direct blows to her heart. Matt stay out of the politics. Matt is a great dancer and will get through depending on tonight. Good luck everyone :)

  • Comment number 10.

    Come on Matt. Don't be down ! We want you to win you work so hard.

  • Comment number 11.

    I thought that the judges especially Len was out of order on friday with the comments they gave Matt you could see that he was gutted and really deflated. At this stage in the competition comments like that are distructive not constuctive. They could show their disapointment in the marks without destroying someone's confidence. I thought Mat did brilliantly bouncing back for the swingathon as he hardly had time to catch his breath! Go Matt we're still rooting for you - you deserve to be in final no matter what the judges say!

  • Comment number 12.

    Will those judges just get off Matt's case-he is lovdely and so hard working-bless him!!

  • Comment number 13.

    Great to see everyone behind Matt, such unfair comments last night. Pick up the phone guys, let's get him in the final. xx

  • Comment number 14.

    Pamela and James to Win! The choreography has always been outstanding, Pamela dances with her soul. She is truly inspirational to all women.

  • Comment number 15.

    Keep voting for Matt!!! Tango such a hard dance to make look good compared to other dances.I might need a second mortgage at this rate-can't stop hitting the re-dial button!

  • Comment number 16.

    Vote for Matt. the judges have treated Matt abominally. I am sure they are fixing the scores for their favourites to win. come on vote for Matt

  • Comment number 17.

    please please please could someone post the numbers I missed them!!!!

  • Comment number 18.

    so k found the one i wanted!!!!!

  • Comment number 19.

    Where did you find it?

  • Comment number 20.

  • Comment number 21.

    I thought the judges were so cruel to Matt on Friday....they all went down in my estimation. It was like bullying in the playground. They could surely see what damage their comments were doing to Matt who had tried his heart out. I didn't see them being that critical when Scott forgot large parts of his dance a couple of weeks ago....no, he got 2 x 9s. FIX FIX FIX. I am considering never watching it again.

    I sat in my living room and cried for Matt and how he must have felt.

    I hope it backfires on the judges and the great people of this country get behind Matt and vote to keep him in. Lets get him top in the public votes.

  • Comment number 22.

    Disgusted with the judging of matt again tonight. Two 9's and two 10's, why not 4 10's. It was flawless and just goes to show that the judges are so blatent with their marking. A few weeks ago Len was moaning that he did'nt like all the faffing about before the dance started, then he tells Pamela that he loved it and gave her a 10. My phone has been on redial so that I make sure Matt gets the result he deserves and goes through to the final. Go Matt, your great.

  • Comment number 23.

    I still think Len shows who his favourites are. He gave Matt a 10 thank heavens but gushes over soemone who hasn't done so well. Time for the judges to go! Vote for Matt - GO MATT!

  • Comment number 24.


  • Comment number 25.

    Have been trying to vote for MATT but phone constantly engaged.Another BBC voting shambles?

  • Comment number 26.

    Tried to vote for Matt a number of times this evening (before 7.30!) but kept failing to do so. May have got the number wrong but tried
    0901522201 and 0901522001. had I got the wrong number?

  • Comment number 27.

    Tried to get Strictly Come Dancing Website but could NOT get any BBC sites between 19.00 and 1935. Why?

    when I did get the site I could not find any reference to voting Telephone Nos. Why?

  • Comment number 28.

    Yorick the first number was right I believe. I couldn't get through either to vote for Matt. He'd better get through or I'm thinking FIX. Surely they did enough damage last night with the public mauling.

  • Comment number 29.

    Couldn't watch the show missed Matt has anyone got his number to vote please

  • Comment number 30.

    When DO the telephone lines close? I have tried umpteen times to vote for MATT - "the lines are now closed" is what I hear. I have tried from my BT landline and from mobiles 'phones. Will someone from Strictly sort this out PLEASE and give us an answer.

  • Comment number 31.

    vote for kara and artem they rock

  • Comment number 32.

    Have just watched the second semi-final and Kara was fantastic yet Craig still found fault, which is strange when he could find no fault with Pamela which has been a theme across recent weeks, what is going on, is there bias in the judging here !!!

  • Comment number 33.

    I agree the judges are totally unfair on matt
    Matt should win.

  • Comment number 34.

    tried for half hour to vote matt (hes brilliant) on landline seemed as if it cut off. managed to get through on mobile.MAT FOR FINAL!!!!!!! if theres any justice in the world. ha ha ha ha ha ha ha

  • Comment number 35.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 36.

    Matt didn't get four tens because he didn't deserve them. He only got two for that routine because he dragged out his kicked puppy look last night (despite only being told the truth - that he's not that great and he over dances EVERYTHING).

    I get that he commands the votes of teenage girls and housewives alike and he may very well win this because of that but don't kid yourselves - he ain't the best dancer. He's not even the second best dancer. He's good, not great and he doesn't even come close to approaching the talent of Pamela or especially Kara. That's just the way it is.

  • Comment number 37.

    That last photo (above) looks as though someone has been sick down a jacket!

  • Comment number 38.

    The judges' comments to Matt & Aliona last night were unfair & embarrassing. They all went down in my estimation and tried to cover their guilt by gushing over Matt tonight. His dances are consistently good and he works so hard so to get those comments last night you could see he wondered what had hit him. Keep up the good work Matt don't let them get to you!

  • Comment number 39.

    Matt was his usual brilliant self, but I could tell he was still "thrown" by the way the judges treated him last night. However, he and Aliona did an amazing job. I managed to vote for him many times tonight without a hitch. I do remember being unable to get through to vote for Jimi the night he went out though, which I still think was fixed by some clever person who knows how to jam the phones (or something similar). Not blaming the BBC - yet! If Gavin gets through to the final (and Scott, for that matter - Natalie's mannequin), then there definitely isn't any justice in the world and it's my last Strictly.

  • Comment number 40.

    I posted this on Mationna but though I'd post here as well....
    Only really been following the last few weeks as I do my work. I have never been into strictly nor am I a particular fan of MB,or celebs in general, but yesterday I was fuming at the way he was treated. My flabber was well and truely gasted...
    He was being bullied I was really praying that he hadn't lost his confidence tonight as he still looked upset and boy, he nailed it tonight! And he still was marked down!!
    That tango was beautiful. It was the best dance tonight- it was very powerful without being in "your face" over raunchy. Pure class. He showed a lot of courage coming back like that after the mawling he got yesterday. Matt seems to have a big heart, is a gentleman and I think he is an inspiration to people.... to never give up ...
    Well done Matt!

  • Comment number 41.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 42.

    Feathers @ 41

    Whilst I agree that on Friday Matt's Salsa was not perfect and that may have had something to do with Aliona's choreography, last night's Tango was well above avaerage.

    Also I agree that Matt's jaw dropped on Friday but he did not "throw a hissy fit" either.

    I am not a dyed in the wool Matt Baker fan but some of the Judges comments were negative without offering any solution. The exception to that was Craig Revel Horwood who explained his concerns.

    I was annoyed because whereas Len, Alesha & Bruno traditionally score higher than CRH, on that occasion they awarded the same score (the only time that evening).

    Still it's only Showbusiness!

    Keeeep Dancing!!!

  • Comment number 43.

    disgusted at treatment of matt.it is a terrible thing to say but i feel he is being picked on.he is such a modest person unlike pamela who is obviously the judges fav.at the end of the day she is a 61 year old granny not cara toynton and just because she is billy connellys wife does not mean she deserves to win.it is a dance competition as we are constantly being reminded.

  • Comment number 44.

    "I get you want to smudge it because you don't want to accept he was bad because you fancy him"
    Feathers@ 41, really you came on the blogg to say that?How old are you?
    Firstly not a strictly fan- I just happened to catch a few episodes last week and friday. Secondly I am not a Matt Baker Fan...but I don't hate him either, for no reason at all.
    "I get you want to smudge it because you don't want to accept he was bad because you fancy him"
    If you read my posts on Mattiona blog tonight- you will see that I have said that some of the routines weren't right because of the choreography, That being said they were still a lot better then those of others who were making major mistakes like falling asleep, falling over, wobbling having major timing issues and actually even not moving (!!??) and yet getting better points in comparison. I even said that the dance on Friday could have been a bit smother, but that was due to interpretation and choreography, not anything that Matt did wrong technically. And the Judges didnt critcise him for his technical ability.
    As I have seen bullying in my teaching experience, I can categorically say that what I saw on Friday was clearly bullying. The judges jobs are to judge a dance and then to offer criticism constructively in order that they can TEACH that person, so he may improve. What I saw was an attempt to totally crush someones self confidence, and that person wasn't even a professional dancer. Even Aliona seemed subdued today and she is a professional.

  • Comment number 45.

    Feathers @36 and 41
    I am a Matt Baker Fan, but then I am also a Kara Tointon fan as well. For you to put up crass remarks is rude and uncalled for. They are also untrue.

    'Matt didn't get four tens because he didn't deserve them. He only got two for that routine because he dragged out his kicked puppy look last night'
    Matt didnt have a a kicked puppy look, he was truly flabbergasted at the judges comments. To be a judge, your comments if they are not going to be positive, should be constructive. He got neither. Both he and his partner were quiet and waiting for further such comments. He did the tango to the best of his abilities.

    'He was criticised because he was bad. I get you want to smudge it because you don't want to accept he was bad because you fancy him but that doesn't make it any less true. He was bad last night, not great tonight and because he threw a hissy fit they gave him 10s he didn't deserve'
    Matt's Salsa wasnt his greatest dance and even as a Matt fan, I admit it. But the comments were not about his dancing abilities but about the choreography and how he was advised to interpret it, which he did as advised; and so should have been on the music and the choreographer. Stick to to the truth or shut up!

    What I heard from the judges (apart from CRH) was blantant rudeness and reminded me of school/work bullies. Yes he was stomped on, bullied for public viewing. But he picked himself up and danced as best as he could. If he got higher marks than Friday just shows what a fighter he is. And if the 3 judges gush over his dance, then they truly mean it or know of the public outrage at their bullying tactics gone wrong and am making a poor apology (I just wanted the marks and tuned myself out when they started talking).
    Were you a bully in your days gone to know what a whipped puppy looks like? Or are there still whipped puppies around you?

  • Comment number 46.

    Well danced Matt you showed true grit and a perfect gentleman they had no right to bully you like that we are all behind you both. I hope the Judges fell totaly ashamed of themselves when they re watch thier comments I HOPE THEY READ ALL THE COMMENTS WELL THEY SHOULD BE MADE TO READ THEM.Good luck for tonight

  • Comment number 47.

    PS I hope the appologise to you in private

  • Comment number 48.

    Why, oh why are the panel so down on Matt Baker, who I consider to be brilliant. I so wanted to give him a big hug when they were really so awful to him. Matt you are a wonderful dancer. If you are not in the final I will not watch it. O-kay Pamela is good for her age, but you are brilliant. I do hope favouritism is not going to ruin your chances.

  • Comment number 49.

    I think that it will be Gavin and Scott that go tonight but i ht hope not . Fingers crossed tha Gavin will be safe , Its not his fault he is always undermarked by Craig . Most improved and my fave from the start

  • Comment number 50.

    RE: Matt's salsa

    Matt performed, as ever, very well. Aliona's choreography let him down, though. Fortunately, the tango made up for it.

    Aliona seems to be an inconsistent choreographer--varying from the brilliance of the American Smooth to the debacle that was the salsa. How can you do a salsa with no "armography"? It looked, frankly, more like disco.

    Didn't keep me from voting for him though. He has a real personality when he dances--which imo is more than Kara has, though she is technically better and very lyrical, no denying that! But she stumbled twice in the rhumba. Maybe the judges couldn't see because of the angle.

  • Comment number 51.

    Pamela has changed my mind over the last 2 weeks, before that I thought she was over rated, I thought she danced with her shoulders around her ears but she danced the Viennese Waltz well last week and the quick step tonight was indeed flawless, she deserved her 4 tens. STILL, though, Kara to win!! She is BRILLIANT and she's been under marked throughout. I think the final should be Kara and Pamela, beyond that, not sure cos, Scott doesn't put enough in to it and Matt puts too much in to it. Matt needs to feel the music more and Scott once said he learned at acting school that less was more and that that's how he feels about dancing and I think he's got that wrong.

  • Comment number 52.

    I was pleased that Ann and Anton are no longer in s.c.d, it was about time they went, even Ann herself admitted that, I was shocked to see that Scott and Natalie were in the bottom 2 along with Ann and Anton last week, but it was the best result that Ann and Anton went last week, I watched Friday and Saturdays shows, they were just brilliant for a semi final, but I think Gavin and Katia are in trouble tonight, I realy think they will be one couple that go tonight, not sure who else will go as the otheres were just brilliant, I though Kara and Artem were just brilliant, why on earth didnt Graig give them a 10 like everyone else, their dance deserved all 10s in my mind, Im pleased that they won the swing a thon, they are just brilliant, worthy winners to hold up that glitterball in the final, they are just so brilliant together, I do like Matt and Aliona too, they are brilliant too, think they will make the final, I do like Pamela and James too, so will just have to wait for the results show tonight, I meant to sent in a comment during the week, but have been so busy here with drs appointments etc didnt have time, will mail tomorrow about the results show tonight, take care everyone

  • Comment number 53.

    Matt better get through tonight or there is no justice in the world! I cannot believe what the judges have said to him over the last weeks. I have never voted before but felt compelled to last night - i kept redialing and got through most times. It looks like he's got lots of support so fingers crossed! I won't be watching the show again if he doesn't get his place in the final!

  • Comment number 54.

    Matt and Aliona keep up your inspirational performances, you are the best thing on tele at the moment!!!!

    Matt and Aliona deserve to WIN. They have given me the best time watching strictly, my husband can't undertsand why i come home each night and watch them again, and again.

    As for some of the judges' comments, i have never been so dismayed at such blatant favoutritism. Shocking. Bring back Arlene?

    I never blog and i never facebook or tweet etc BUT THIS is my FIRST exception.

  • Comment number 55.

    Matt has been dreadfully treated by the "judges" for some time. He is consistently great and I think that's one of the reasons they have taken umbrage with his performances. Regrettably, I think the weakest part of Matts dancing is the choreography and Aliona is very much to blame for that.

    Now to the thorny issue of the judges. Alesha has undoubtedly improved, but alas, I think it is time for her to pursue that pop career with a little more earnestness. Bruno is blatantly biased and only damages his reputation by his slavish adorations. Len is increasingly ill-temepred and erratic and Craig, well, harsh yes, but his score is the only one the contestants want, so doesn't that tell you something?

    So please let common sense prevail and fingers crossed that Gavin and Scott leave this evening. What a fab final it will be if we have three great dancers in it - Matt, Pamela and Kara!

  • Comment number 56.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 57.

    What I forgot to say in my last comment was all my very best wishes for this evening Matt. The more I think about this the more disgusted I have become with the judges - perhaps we need a new judging panel ?

  • Comment number 58.

    Final coming up tonight. we, and many others around me can't believe how much bad marking the judges are giving to Matt. He is by far the most professional male celebrity dancer by far. They give Gavin rave reports and marks, and much as he has improved, he is nowhere near the ability of Matt Baker. We are all dancers and really think that the Judges have something against Matt Baker. Let's hope that they haven't jeopardised his winning this 'globe' by their unfair comments. It isn't his fault that the routine doesn't come up to expectation, it is his professional dancer's fault. She is the one who does the routine, not him. We are shocked at their comments. They are so unfair. And I am not alone in these thoughts.!!!!!! They ran Ann Whitt down for her poor dancing, but are not so keen to do this with Gavin and yet Matt Baker gets picked on very unjustly. For the first time we are so very disappointed in the judges this year.

  • Comment number 59.

    Matt and Aliona have been the most consistent couple and have taken too much flack from the judges - I think from last nights audience reaction to both them confirms who will be lifting the glitter ball this year. Go Matt !

  • Comment number 60.

    I know tonight's programme is already recorded.
    I am concerned that the outcome will be affected by a scoring error.
    Gavin should only have 1 point after Saturday's show, not 2. 1st - 5 points, 2nd 4 points, joint 3rd,- 3 points & then Gavin, 5th should only have 1 point. It's not hard BBC - you've got it wrong again.

  • Comment number 61.

    Kara and Artem to win strictly, they deserve it. They were fantastic last night, yet Craig still found fault, he needs to go and Arlene needs to come back


  • Comment number 62.

    I agree whole heartedly with viewers comments regarding the inconsistant judging that has taken place this series.If the series loses favour with the knowledgable dancing fans, in future series the ccusations that it maybe fixed or biased will gain momentum.

  • Comment number 63.

    I agree with other viewers comments regarding questionable judging throughout this series.

  • Comment number 64.

    I cannot moderate my thoughts any further since I can only speak as find.

  • Comment number 65.

    26Yorrick - the number for Matt was 09015 22 20 01 - you missed out a digit. Voting has, obviously, now closed as it's the next day, so don't vote now!

  • Comment number 66.

    Opinion seems to show that Matt has been marked down all the way through when he is obviously the best dancer. I love watching him and think as a performer he will go far. His determination after the Friday mauling was great and his performance on Saturday was stunning.
    Every week we have been told how hard Scott is having to work (all day and dance at night) but Matt is doing 'Country File filming all around the country, plus working frequently on the One Show. To teach the dances Aliona has to follow him around!
    Love watching Matt and Aliona dancing together, she's my favourite professional. Go Matt go!

  • Comment number 67.

    another injustice..perfect score for pamela and not kara. she performed 3 o 4 dance.s where she deserved 40's


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