BBC Breakfast presenter Naga Munchetty hung up her dancing shoes last week after losing the dance-off to singer Anastacia.
With 11 couples still in the competition, the road to the Glitterball Trophy still has many hurdles and the voting from the public is proving to be incredibly unpredictable. Last weekend BBC presenter Ore Oduba and his partner Joanne Clifton topped the leaderboard and picked up the first 10s of the series for their Jive.
Former politician Ed Balls continued to keep the bottom of the leaderboard warm after failing to remember most of his routine. Still the public seem to love him so I don’t think he’ll be going any where for a few more weeks.
Laura Whitmore pulled out of tonight’s live show earlier today after doctors advised her not to dance following an ankle injury. Due to the rules of Strictly, Laura and her partner Giovanni Pernice get an automatic pass through to next week.
Brendan Cole also pulled out of the show due to illness meaning that Anastacia was partnered with Gorka Marquez for the night.
Find out how the couples got on during tonight’s live show…
Judge Rinder & Oksana Platero
Judge Rinder admitted that he was disappointed with the feedback on his performance last weekend and he was determined to concentrate on the dancing tonight. During the week Oksana Platero visited Judge Rinder in his court room where they practised their Jive. Tonight they danced to Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy by The Andrews Sisters.
The dance: Judge Rinder didn’t tone down his facial expressions but his dancing looked pretty good to me. He was full of energy and his partnership with Oksana is a brilliant one. The audience gave him a standing ovation too!
The comments: Len said that Judge Rinder impressed him and told him that it was like a history of the Jive. Bruno said that Judge Rinder was like Jimney Cricket and commended his energy and enthusiasm. Craig said that he likes how Judge Rinder danced with abandon and complimented his one hand cartwheel. Darcey commented on how hard the dance routine was and told Judge Rinder she loved his performance.
The score: 29 out of 40
Lesley Joseph & Anton du Beke
Birds of a Feather star Lesley Joseph was marvellous last weekend, impressing everyone with her high energy Charleston. During training Anton du Beke told her that she was improving every week and the pair couldn’t wait to get to work on their Tango. Lesley played a fortune teller during the performance and she tried to predict her scores to get into the spirit.
The dance: Every week I can’t wait to see Lesley dance and she didn’t disappoint. Her Tango was feisty, moody and fun. She moved around the dance floor with ease and didn’t miss a beat.
The comments: Bruno said that Lesley was hanging onto Anton for dear life and told her he loved her intensity. Craig said that Lesley was going up and down, and stumbled throughout the routine. Darcey said that she was impressed and told Lesley that she almost achieved all of the steps. Len said that everything was there but told Lesley there were a few issues, which he jokingly blamed on Anton.
The score: 24 out of 40
Greg Rutherford & Natalie Lowe
Last week Olympian Greg Rutherford impressed with his Salsa, which saw him lifting Natalie Lowe in the final moments. This week Greg and Natalie danced the Cha Cha and they knew it would leave Greg very exposed to criticism if he didn’t get it right. During the week Natalie took Greg to the Olympic Park in Stratford to train. Tonight Greg and Natalie danced to Rihanna’s We Found Love.
The dance: Oh dear! Greg was very wooden and looked uncomfortable for most of the Cha Cha. Natalie tried to cover it up but I don’t think that was a great effort from him. Very flat footed and lacking in energy.
The comments: Craig said that Greg looked very stiff and told him that it exposed his weaknesses. Darcey told Greg to remember that he’s accomplished a lot and told him the Cha Cha wasn’t his dance. Len pointed out that Greg has never danced before and told him he didn’t look comfortable or confident. Bruno said he loves Greg’s muscular stance but told him he stiffened up too much.
The score: 24 out of 40
Anastacia & Gorka Marquez
Singer Anastacia had had a rollercoaster of a time on Strictly Come Dancing after being in the bottom two twice so far. This week she suffered another blow when her partner Brendan Cole fell ill and was replaced by Gorka Marquez. Anastacia promised to make Brendan proud with her Quickstep.
The dance: That was without a doubt Anastacia’s best dance of the series so far. I actually preferred her with Gorka and she really came out of herself this week. Well done!
The comments: Darcey said that it was a lovely surprised and commented on how light Anastacia was on her feet. Len said that Anastacia looked like she was in her comfort zone and told her it was her best dance. Bruno said he loved Anastacia’s musicality and energy. Craig said there was too much of a gap between Anastacia and Gorka but told her she performed it brilliantly.
The score: 30 out of 40
Louise Redknapp & Kevin Clifton
Louise Redknapp had another good week last week with her well-received Foxtrot. This week it was a gear change for the Rumba so Kevin Clifton took Louise to Paris to get her into the spirit for their Parisian themed dance. Louise admitted that she found the dance hard but promised to give it her all.
The dance: Louise danced the routine well but there wasn’t the sizzle I’d expect from a Rumba. Her footwork was once again fantastic but the chemistry lacked a little bit for me.
The comments: Len said that Louise is consistently good but told her that she’s on a plateau at the moment. Bruno told Louise that it was chic and elegant and he said he loved the little flourishes. Craig said it lacked excitement and told Louise it was a very safe performance. Darcey said that Louise has the ability to top the leaderboard and told her to keep pushing.
The score: 33 out of 40
Ed Balls & Katya Jones
Ed Balls had a very bad time when he completely forgot his routine during last weekend’s live show. This week Ed was determined to get it right this week with his American Smooth. During training Ed told his partner Katya Jones that he wanted to show that he can dance and that he can improve. Did Ed manage to impress this week (and remember his routine)?
The dance: Ed almost dropped Katya on his face and I, along with everyone else watching, held their breath. Thankfully he managed to keep hold of her and averted disaster. Until that point he was doing pretty well so it’s a real shame.
The comments: Bruno said that he thinks Ed can dance but told him to maybe scale it back a bit. Craig said it was the antithesis of smooth and told Ed he did too many lifts. Darcey said that Ed started really well and told him it was a shame that he didn’t manage to recover from it. Len said that the trouble with hitch-hiking is that you always get a dodgy lift and told Ed he started off so strongly.
The score: 18 out of 40
Ore Oduba & Joanne Clifton
The pressure is on for Ore Oduba after last week’s magnificent Jive, which scored him three 10s, and the first 10s of the competition. This week Ore and his partner Joanne Clifton were slowing things down with the Waltz. During the week Joanne went to Manchester to watch Ore take part in the Olympic and Paralympic parade. Tonight they danced to I Will Always Love You.
The dance: After last week’s Jive anything was going to be a come down for Ore. His Waltz was fine, it not particularly remarkable. It was an adequate job to get decent scores but definitely not reaching the highs of his Jive.
The comments: Craig said that Ore did extremely well and told him the phrasing of the performance was wonderful. Darcey agreed with Craig and told Ore he was calm and elegant. Len said it was ‘quiet, calm and sophisticated’ and told Ore he loved the hover. Bruno said that Ore communicates through his moves perfectly and told him he surprises him every week.
The score: 36 out of 40
Daisy Lowe & Aljaz Skorjanec
Daisy Lowe has performed consistently and she told her partner Aljaz Skorjanec that her Rumba last week was really special for her. This week Daisy and Aljaz danced the Charleston to Happy Feet and part of their routine would be taking place in the dark. To get into the spirit they went dining in the dark. Was it another good week for Daisy?
The dance: The routine was a lot of fun and I could tell Daisy enjoyed every single moment of it. Her smile was infectious and she gave a really good performance tonight.
The comments: Darcey said that Daisy captures the spirit of the silent moves but told her that her crispness went slightly at the end. Len said he was happy and told Daisy she did a wonderful Charleston. Bruno said it was clever and full of joy. Craig said that he loved it.
The score: 32 out of 40
Danny Mac & Oti Mabuse
Actor Danny Mac was the next celebrity to tackle the Rumba this week. He’s been the strongest dancer in the competition until last week when Ore upped his game and nabbed the first 10s of the series. Oti Mabuse took Danny to the circus to learn to walk the tightrope to help his balance. Tonight Danny and Oti danced their Rumba to How Will I Know.
The dance: Danny once again impressed with his dancing ability. He’s a really good all rounder and for me, I think he should have got a 10 a few weeks back. I’ll be amazed if he’s not in the final.
The comments: Len said that Danny is a consistently good dancer. Bruno said that the Rumba is difficult for men but told Danny he did it very well. Craig said that Danny gave it too much attack but told him he loves watching him. Darcey said that Danny’s efforts paid off.
The score: 35 out of 40
Claudia Fragapane & AJ Pritchard
Olympian Claudia Fragapane danced the Samba tonight and she admitted that she was finding it really hard. AJ Pritchard said that he needed to get Claudia to loosen her body so she can get into the routine. During training Claudia struggled with the routine and admitted her gymnastics background made it harder. Did she pull it off on the night?
The dance: Claudia definitely managed to loosen up her body during that Samba. It was a great dance to end the night on and possibly her best dance to date. AJ gave her a great routine!
The comments: Bruno said that he wanted to join in and commended AJ for putting so much content into the routine. Craig said it was a little bit frenetic and likened Claudia to a tornado. Darcey said she got really excited but told Claudia that she lost the finesse when the routine sped up. Len said that the music ruined the steps a little bit but told Claudia he enjoyed the performance.
The score: 32 out of 40
The overall leaderboard for the evening was:
Ore Oduba & Joanne Clifton – 36
Danny Mac & Oti Mabuse – 35
Louise Redknapp & Kevin Clifton – 33
Claudia Fragapane & AJ Pritchard – 32
Daisy Lowe & Aljaz Skorjanec – 32
Anastacia & Gorka Marquez – 30
Judge Rinder & Oksana Platero – 29
Greg Rutherford & Natalie Lowe – 24
Lesley Joseph & Anton du Beke – 24
Ed Balls & Katya Jones – 18
Strictly Come Dancing 2016 continues at 7.15pm tomorrow night when the next couple leaves the competition. See all of the action from today’s dress rehearsal in our gallery below:
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