Which classical performers have done Strictly Come Dancing?

Over its long history (the first series was broadcast way back in 2004), the BBC’s flagship dance contest show Strictly Come Dancing has attracted hundreds of illustrious contestants from the worlds of sport and entertainment… and, among them, we can find a select quartet of notable names from the classical world.

Classical performers who have appeared on Strictly Come Dancing

Aled Jones

Singer and radio / TV presenter Aled Jones shot to fame as a teenage chorister in 1985. That was the year his recording of ‘Walking in the Air’, for the film The Snowman, made the top five of the UK singles chart. Since then, Aled has worked for the BBC, ITV, and Classic FM.

What year did Aled Jones apear on Strictly?

Aled’s Strictly moment came in 2004 (Series Two) when, dancing with the Russian professional Lilia Kopylova, he reached week 7. Only Julian Clary, Denise Lewis and series winner Jill Halfpenny performed better.

Katie Derham

Presenter Katie Derham has made an interesting journey at the BBC, from financial researcher to classical music broadcaster. She’s now a familiar face as one of the presenters of the BBC Proms.

What year did Katie Derham apear on Strictly?

In Series 13 (2015), Katie and her dance partner Anton du Beke finished in a very creditable fourth place.

Bill Bailey

The hugely engaging comedian and polymath Bill Bailey is an avowedly avid fan of all forms of music, including classical. Indeed, we interviewed Bill Bailey on his love of classical in 2009, several years before his victorious appearance on Strictly Come Dancing.

Bailey chose works by Sibelius, Debussy, Saint-Saëns, Bach and Mozart as the five pieces that have had the greatest impact on him.

What year did Bill Bailey win Strictly?

Bill Bailey competed on Strictly Come Dancing in 2020 (Series 18). With partner Oti Mabuse, Bailey made it all the way through the competition, emerging as the Series 18 winner.

He was 55 at the time, meaning that, yes, Bill Bailey is the oldest Strictly winner. Nice work, sir!

Dame Darcey Bussell

The retired ballerina Darcey Bussell is perhaps now as well known for her six-year stint as a Strictly judge, as for her illustrious career on the stage. Bussell started out dancing with Sadlers Wells Royal Ballet, but transferred to the Royal Ballet after just one year. That was where she acquired the distinction of becoming the youngest-ever principal dancer in 1989, aged just 20.

Bussell stayed with the Royal Ballet for her entire career, although she also performed as a guest with some of the world’s great companies including La Scala Theatre Ballet and the Kirov Ballet.

She retired from ballet in 2007. Her final performance, at the Royal Opera House, was James MacMillan’s Song of the Earth, which features music from Mahler‘s song cycle Das Lied von der Erde.

When was Darcey Bussell a judge on Strictly?

Darcey Bussell did seven series as a Strictly Judge – beginning with Series 10, in 2012, and ending with Series 16, in 2018. She was part of one of the best-remembered judging lineups, alongside Len Goodman, Bruno Tonioli, and the show’s longest-serving judge, Craig Revel Horwood.

Top pic: Bill Bailey and Oti Mabuse. Pic: BBC / Guy Levy

Stay in the Loop

Get the daily email from CryptoNews that makes reading the news actually enjoyable. Join our mailing list to stay in the loop to stay informed, for free.

Latest stories

- Advertisement - spot_img

You might also like...