Celeb dance fest as national Strictly tour launches in Birmingham
Strictly fans will be packing Arena Birmingham from tonight as this year’s Strictly Come Dancing Arena Tour kicks off in the city tonight.
The show features a fantastic line-up of celebrities and their professional partners – newly crowned Strictly champion Stacey Dooley and new dance partner Aljaž Skorjanec; Ashley Roberts and Pasha Kovalev; Dr Ranj Singh and Janette Manrara; Lauren Steadman and AJ Pritchard; Joe Sugg and Dianne Buswell; Graeme Swann and Karen Clifton and Faye Tozer and Giovanni Pernice.
This sparkling line-up will be joining tour host, Ore Oduba and the Live Tour judging panel of awesome foursome Craig Revel Horwood, Dame Darcey Bussell, Shirley Ballas and Bruno Tonioli for as they dance around the country for 29 glittering shows.
To add even more wow, professional dancers Nadiya Bychkova, Luba Mushtuk, Graziano Di Prima, Amy Dowden and Johannes Radebe will also be performing in this supersized dance extravaganza. The tour will feature music from the Strictly singers and the Strictly live band.
Stacey Dooley is a renowned BBC journalist whose hard hitting documentaries have taken her to some of the most dangerous and unexpected parts of the world. Stacey said: “I’ve loved this experience so much. I know people always say that, but it’s so true. To be able to go on tour and perform for the fans all over the UK is such an honour. I’m so excited! I will miss Kev, but I am looking forward to putting Aljaž through his paces!”.
Ashley Roberts is best known for being a member of one of the biggest girl groups in the world – The Pussycat Dolls. Since leaving the group in 2010 she has gone on to have a hugely successful broadcast career and was the first contestant to receive a perfect score of 40 from the judges in this series. Ashley said: “The costumes, the crowds and the cha-cha-cha! I’m having the time of my life on Strictly and can’t wait to get my dance shoes back on for the tour. I couldn’t think of a better way to start the New Year.”
Dr Ranj Singh is best known as resident doctor on This Morning, with his beaming smile making him a much loved Strictly Come Dancing star. Dr Ranj said: “From the sequins to the sashays, I have loved my Strictly journey, so to join the Live Tour is beyond exciting. I can’t wait to be reunited with Janette, hit the road and meet all the Strictly fans!”.
World Champion and triple Paralympian Lauren Steadman has been wowing TV audiences with her determination to push herself in her spectacular dance routines. Lauren said: “This whole experience has been life changing and I’m beyond excited to now dance in some of the country’s biggest arenas and meet all the fans who have supported us.”
Joe Sugg is a global star, vlogger, filmmaker and entrepreneur with over eight million subscribers tuning into his YouTube channel every day to watch his hilarious antics and shenanigans. Joe said: “I’m so thrilled to be joining the Strictly Tour in the New Year. I’ve loved every minute of Strictly, so continuing my journey into 2019 is going to be brilliant. I can’t wait to get quick stepping at arenas all over the UK.”.
Graeme Swann is often described as one of England’s greatest ever cricketers and truly discovered his dancing spirit during his time on the show. Graeme said: “Quick stepping on the cricket pitch is nothing like on a dance floor that’s for sure! I’m thrilled to be joined by the incredible Karen Clifton on the Strictly tour and can’t wait to get on the road and make Oti proud.”
Faye Tozer is a member of British pop group Steps and is now dazzling Strictly viewers week after week, topping the TV show leaderboard three times. Faye said: “I’m living the Strictly dream! I love going on tour, so to be asked to join the Strictly Live Tour is such an honour and I cannot wait to meet all the fans.”
Opening at the Arena Birmingham, the Strictly Come Dancing Live Tour will then visit arenas across the UK including; Leeds’ First Direct Arena, Manchester Arena, Liverpool’s Echo Arena, Sheffield’s Fly DSA Arena, The SSE Hydro in Glasgow, Nottingham’s Motorpoint Arena and The SSE Arena, Wembley. The tour culminates with four shows at The O2 Arena in London on 9 and 10 February.
I Am Birmingham reporter Vimal Korpal caught up with the stars of the show ahead of their debut performance at Arena Birmingham:
When and where is the show touring?
STRICTLY COME DANCING THE LIVE TOUR 2019:
(Friday 18th at 7.30pm, Saturday 19th at 2.30pm & 7.30pm, Sunday 20th at 1.30pm & 6.30pm, Monday 21st at 7.30pm)
Leeds – First Direct Arena
(Thursday 24th at 7.30pm, Friday 25th at 7.30pm)
(Saturday 26th at 2.30pm & 7.30pm, Sunday 27th at 1.30pm & 6.30pm)
Liverpool – Echo Arena
(Tuesday 29th at 2.30pm & 7.30pm)
Sheffield – Fly DSA Arena
(Wednesday 30th at 7.30pm, Thursday 31st at 7.30pm)
Glasgow – The SSE Hydro
(Friday 1st at 7.30pm, Saturday 2nd at 2.30pm & 7.30pm, Sunday 3rd at 1.30pm)
Nottingham – Motorpoint Arena
(Tuesday 5th at 7.30pm, Wednesday 6th at 2.30pm & 7.30pm)
London – The SSE Arena Wembley
(Thursday 7th at 7.30pm, Friday 8th at 7.30pm)
London – The O2 Arena
(Saturday 9th at 2.30pm & 7.30pm, Sunday 10th at 1.30pm & 6.30pm)
For more information and to book tickets, visit: www.strictlycomedancinglive.com.