Strictly Come Dancing 2016 reached its semi-final tonight as the final four couples competed for a place in next week’s Grand Final.
Tonight all of the couples danced twice making it the toughest week in the competition so far. The standard between the final four is so close that any of them could beheading home during tomorrow night’s results show.
Tess Daly and Claudia Winkleman presided over the evening so keep reading on to find out how the couples performed.
Louise Redknapp & Kevin Clifton – Tango
Singer Louise had a strong night last Saturday with her Calamity Jane inspired Quickstep. For the first of her two dances tonight, Louise danced the Tango with her partner Kevin Clifton. She admitted during training that the Tango was going against all of the rise and fall she’d been working on since the series began. Louise and Kevin also took time out to watch messages from the public wishing them well.
The dance: I didn’t love that routine. The music didn’t seem to fit with the dance at all and I thought I spotted a few mistakes in there. It wasn’t Louise’s best dance.
The comments: Len said ‘didn’t she do well’ and commended Louise for her attack and attitude. Bruno said he was surprised and thrilled by the routine. Craig said that Louise was thrown off balance in one bit but told her she was dynamic. Darcey commented on Louise’s attack and agreed with the other judges about the performance.
The score: 37 out of 40
Danny Mac & Oti Mabuse – Salsa
Actor Danny Mac has been leading the pack for the past few weeks and he’s definitely the favourite to win the series. Before he danced tonight, Danny admitted that he struggled with last week’s Tango and said he didn’t want to have to dance it again. This week Danny’s first dance was a Salsa with his partner Oti Mabuse.
The dance: What a stunning performance. Danny is definitely more comfortable in Latin and he moves with such ease.
The comments: Bruno said he loved the flamboyance of the routine and told Danny it was a naughty Salsa. Craig said the routine lacked figure 8 rotation in the hips but commended the preparation for the lifts that Danny did during the routine. Darcey said that the detail and the lifts were fabulous but wished he’d had more attitude. Len said it was tasty and satisfying with a bit of Oti flavour calling the routine hot and steamy.
The score: 37 out of 40
Claudia Fragapane & AJ Pritchard – Rumba
Claudia is the most improved of the four celebs left in the competition. It’s taken a while for her to put aside her gymnastics training but she’s really taken large strides the past few weeks. During training Claudia and AJ watched messages of support from the public as they readied their Rumba.
The dance: Claudia pulled some very impressive moves during that routine. Aside from AJ’s messy hair, the performance was very strong and perhaps one of their best yet.
The comments: Craig said that he thought the routine was ‘a little square’ and told them it lacked chemistry. Darcey said there were some wonderful moments but told Claudia that she needed to bring more emotion. Len said that Claudia was dressed as his favourite Quality Street and told her it was a clean and precise Rumba. Bruno said Claudia’s lines were great but agreed with the other judges that her hip action was lacking.
The score: 35 out of 40
Ore Oduba & Joanne Clifton – Quickstep
Presenter Ore Oduba survived his second dance-off last weekend and he admitted that he didn’t want to go home tomorrow night. Tonight he started off with the Quickstep, which he revealed was going to be fast and furious. Did he get off to a roaring start?
The dance: Ore certainly flew around the floor during the routine. He seemed to have his confidence back and you can see how much he wants to get to the final next week. A solid start to the night.
The comments: Darcey said that Ore really came to life tonight and commended him for keeping his cool. Len said that Ore had speed and control telling it was fantastic while giving him a standing ovation. Bruno told Ore his Quickstep was fantastic and also gave a standing ovation. Craig said that Joanne set a high bar and criticised Ore’s posture.
The score: 38 out of 40
Louise Redknapp & Kevin Clifton – Samba
I didn’t love Louise’s first dance tonight but she got great comments from the judges and a solid score. For her second routine Louise danced a Samba with Kevin.
The dance: That was a lot stronger than Louise’s first dance. She really did let go and the routine was pretty fast and furious. Good job!
The comments: Len said that the routine was packed with content and told Louise she came out full of rhythm and attitude. Bruno said that Louise tackled a lot of content and told her she did a very difficult routine. Craig called it an incredible performance. Darcey said that Louise needs to keep her energy high until the end but told her she did a great performance.
The score: 36 out of 40
Danny Mac & Oti Mabuse – American Smooth
Danny performed strongly with his Salsa tonight and looked poised to keep the top of the leaderboard warm once again this weekend. His second dance with Oti was the American Smooth.
The dance: Danny proved once again why he’s the favourite to beat. That was an absolutely incredible American Smooth. He’ll be in the final no problem.
The comments: Bruno said he was swept away by the emotion of the dance calling it exquisite. Craig said it was right up his street and he loved it. Darcey said that Danny achieved great quality but told him there was one clumsy lift. Len agreed with Craig admitting he loved it.
The score: 39 out of 40
Claudia Fragapane & AJ Pritchard – Quickstep
The judges were pretty harsh on Claudia after her first routine. I actually really enjoyed her Rumba and thought she should have scored better than she did. For her second routine Claudia danced the Quickstep with AJ.
The dance: I really loved Claudia’s Quickstep. It was super fast and her footwork was really great. She deserves to be in next week’s final.
The comments: Craig said the routine got him smiling and commended Claudia’s character throughout the dance. Darcey said Claudia was light and energetic telling her she was really impressive. Len said that Claudia has gone from gymnastic to fantastic. Bruno said that Claudia’s footwork was amazing and commended her turns with sway in.
The score: 38 out of 40
Ore Oduba & Joanne Clifton – Argentine Tango
Ore was back on form with his first dance of the evening and he could very well be in next week’s final. For his second dance he performed the Argentine Tango with his partner Joanne Clifton.
The dance: Ore was on fire tonight. He really fought for a place in next week’s final and he could have edged Claudia out with that Argentine Tango. Powerful and fast.
The comments: Darcey said that Ore found moments on intensity and tension. Len pointed out that Ore has no dance experience and commended the precision in his performance. Bruno said the performance was outstanding. Craig said Ore’s second dance was better than his first and told him to be proud of himself.
The score: 39 out of 40
The overall leaderboard for the evening was:
Ore Oduba & Joanne Clifton – 77
Danny Mac & Oti Mabuse – 76
Claudia Fragapane & AJ Pritchard – 73
Louise Redknapp & Kevin Clifton – 73
Strictly Come Dancing 2016 continues at 7.20pm tomorrow night when the next couple leaves the competition. See all of the action from today’s dress rehearsal in our gallery below:
[gss carousel=”fx=carousel” ids=”1016700,1016701,1016702,1016703,1016704,1016705,1016706,1016707,1016708,1016709,1016710,1016711,1016712,1016713,1016714,1016715,1016716,1016717″]