The Ultimate Strictly Challenge – Week 3!💃🏻🏆💃🏻

So last week, we put perfect scoring Tangos and Jives against one another in a bid to see which Tango and which Jive were best.

In case you missed it, here’s a reminder of the contenders in picture form:

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It was a closely fought competition full of kicks, flicks and contra  checks. Your votes have now been checked, counted and verified and we can now reveal that the Tango going through to the final is Kimberley and Pasha’s perfect scoring Tango and the Jive going through to the final is (the first perfect-scoring dance ever!) Jill and Darren’s. Congratulations to both couples! We’ll see you in the final.

The competition is now picking up, and it’s time for us to spice things up with the battle of salsas and sambas and quicksteps! All you need to do is watch the dances below in this video then vote for your favourite salsa or samba and quickstep in the polls just underneath.

Now here are the interesting bit… the terms and conditions *replicates the clauditorium in her living room* Please ask Bill Payer’s permission (whoever he is) before you vote. Voting will remain open until 6pm next Sunday (5th February!) You can vote once a day in each poll for your favourites. The winning couple from each category will go through to the final (in week 10) where they will battle with the other winning dances to be crowned the best dance on Strictly ever!

Keep dancing and voting (we don’t mind you dancing while you vote, but please be careful as this can be quite a risky business!)

Cassie 🙂

Strictly Support Group – A Chinese New Year Chat 💃🏻🎑🎇💃🏻

It’s the Chinese New Year today and in honour of this celebration, we hosted a Chinese New Year themed chat tonight (complete with fireworks, lights and prawn crackers.)

We began our chat by tucking into a Sweet and Sour and asking you to tell us Which Strictly moment reminds you most of this dish? We had a great answer from one of our lovely followers and couldn’t agree more. Showdances are always bittersweet:

For our next question, as it’s the Year of the Rooster, we asked you to tell us who on Strictly fitted the characteristics for Roosters best (honest, flamboyant, energetic and flexible) We had some great suggestions from you all:

https://twitter.com/libraryliz101/status/825424763002748929

Overwhelmingly, lots of you chose Bruno. It’s easy to see why. Think he was slightly shocked though:

For our next question, we asked you to tell us your Strictly good luck charms and any customs you do each week whilst Strictly is on our screens. We had some great answers. Here were some of our favourites:

For our next question, we asked you to tell us the dance on Strictly which had been explosive like a fireworks display on Strictly. We had some great suggestions. Here they are in playlist form:

http://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLbpw-gqR2K3bzNyMmVPduMDzk-OLF7RFj

If you can think of any other routines you’d like to see added to this playlist, just tell us and we’ll make sure they’re put on the list as soon as possible.

For our next question we asked you to tell us the couple or dance on Strictly which lit up the dancefloor. Here are some of your wonderful suggestions:

For our final question, we asked you to tell us the Chinese dish which reminds you most of Strictly and why? We had some great suggestions like Sweet and Sour Chicken, Chicken Balls, Singapore Noodles and these!

That ended our chat tonight. Thank you all who took part. If you didn’t get a chance to take part, don’t fear. You can still join in by tweeting @scd_support or commenting below. 

We’ll be back tomorrow (Sunday) evening from 8pm to reveal the results for Week 2 of our Ultimate Strictly Challenge and to unveil the dances which will be going into battle for Week 3!  Hope to see you then.

From all of us, wishing all those celebrating Chinese New Year a very Happy and Prosperous year of the Rooster.

Cassie 🙂 

Shape and Tone with FitSteps – A Review

We’re currently working hard training to run in this year’s London Marathon, and whilst long running and personal training sessions are on the agenda over the next few weeks, when we heard that there was a new FitSteps DVD, we quickly purchased it to ensure our weekly fitness sessions are super fab-u-lous!

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In case you have been living under a sparkly rock for the past few years, FitSteps is the dance fitness craze brought to us by the lovely Ian Waite, Natalie Lowe and Mark Foster. It is a dance fitness programme where you get to learn steps from some of your favourite Strictly dances and is a lot of fun.

We already reviewed the previous FitSteps DVD a couple of years ago (click here to find out more and see our review.) and this DVD continues where the previous DVD left off. It features 3 30 minute dance workouts which are designed to get you fit, toned and feeling great – fast!

For Latin Lovers there is a Latin work out (with Ian) and for Ballroom fans there is a Ballroom work out (led by Natalie.) There is also a 4 x 4 workout. The workouts will really get you up, dancing and your heart pumping. The workouts are easy to follow and the workouts great fun, so if you struggle at the thought of jumping off the sofa to do any activity, this will definitely help!

Where the previous FitSteps DVD helped you learn the basics of Ballroom and Latin whilst getting a workout, this DVD gives you some more challenging steps which we’re sure will give you a thorough workout and leave you grinning like the cheshire cat. Dance really is good for the soul and always makes us smile! Rather than feeling exhausted (after a 30 minute workout) we felt refreshed, invigorated and had a spring in our step!

If you haven’t danced before or completed the previous FitSteps DVD you may find the steps a bit challenging, but with perseverance anything is possible! I even managed to get a 8/10 from my uber-critical 6 year old for my efforts!

If you’re looking for a fun dance workout that you can do from home, this is it! FitSteps – Shape and Tone is available from all good stockists (including amazon.co.uk) and is great value at £10!

If you’ve tried this DVD, let us know what you thought. You can do so by tweeting @scd_support or commenting below. We look forward to hearing from you.

Cassie 🙂

DWTS Ireland – Week 3 – A review by @byrnesarahnow

Those of you who follow our blog will know, every week we’re following Dancing With Stars Ireland and have our very own reporter, the lovely Sarah, who is bringing us the news week by week! Here’s what happened on Sunday’s show in her own words:

1st Elimination

Well folks, Week 3 arrived and brought with it a whole host of surprises. Julian’s jackets seem to be becoming more elaborate with each week and doesn’t seem to be calming down. May need to have a special section just for him.

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As everyone was dancing tonight we were able to get stuck in to all and it seemed like some of the boys underperformed compared to their last outing and the girls got stronger.

Katherine & Kai – Cha Cha – 18

*was like an Irish Madonna seducing a younger man and she did it well*

Dayl & Kzenia – Tango – 19

*Dayl has been given 2 strikes against him from Brian for including Hip Hop in his dancing who seems to be getting into his stride and channelling Craig**

Aidan & Valeria – Quickstep – 16

*Seem to really lose his way this week & has since announced his retirement from County football – maybe to concentrate on dancing who knows.*

Dr Eva & Sean – Foxtrot – 18

* She seemed to take this dance serious and it showed as her scores improved*

Des B. & Giuila – Salsa – 21

*Des went to Club Tropicana as let it all go – he really looked like he was enjoying himself and his confidence is growing*

Hughie & Emily – Waltz – 17

*Hughie 2.0 took to the floor and looked like a completely different person and while the score wasn’t great it was still an improvement*

Teresa & John – Cha Cha – 15

*Teresa is a Breast Cancer warrior and danced to Stronger by Kelly Clarkson and it had more of a story than the dance delivered sadly. The dance wasn’t great but she did it for survivors everywhere so well done**

Thalia & Curtis – Rumba – 21

*Thalia was a bit upset by last weeks scores and set out to redeem herself and that’s what she did. Her long legs were made for the Rumba.*

++Is this the earliest we have seen a Rumba? I cant remember, please everyone let me know++

Denise & Ryan – Tango – 26

*Biggest surprise of the night. Described as a Master class  of a Tango, Ryan looked especially pleased with himself. This danced earned not 1 but 2 #9 paddles with Brian giving an 8*

Des C. & Karen – Paso – 18

*Well if Denise gave a Master class of a Tango, Des gave us a demonstration in not only dad dancing but determination and enjoyment. He gave it socks and received a standing ovation worthy of the final for his efforts*

Aoibhin & Vitali – Quickstep – 22

*Last out and showed no sign of nerves, she put in a really good performance**

So there you have it all 11 have danced, voting lines were opened and we had the customary ad breaks and chats to everyone. We were treated to a lovely light-hearted colourful Pro dance which centred around picture frames.

Next up it was the elimination  – panic stations – all couples were on the floor and I felt this bit was a bit rushed. All saved couples were announced and we were left with three.

Thalia, Dr Eva & Hughie – I though sure it would be Dr Eva (she wouldn’t be the most popular person) but huge surprise it was Hughie and no one was more surprised than he was, poor fella he looked devastated.

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That’s all for this week, let me know what you thought.

Sarah💚

Strictly Support Group – Kids Say The Funniest Things!

Here at the Strictly Support Group, we love to cure your post-strictly blues! I’m very lucky, that in my house I have a young Strictly Superfan (Bella – aged 6) who makes me smile and laugh with her words of wisdom. 

Yesterday afternoon I had some wonderful words of wisdom from my little girl Bella which I thought might make you smile! It all started on Sunday evening, when she told me this:

Then yesterday, as we get ready for our trip to the Strictly tour (17 sleeps today) I had this pearl of wisdom from my 6 year old:

Bella: Mummy, when I’m bigger, I’m going to get a job so I can go to every show of the Strictly tour. I think I’ll need to wait until I’m 12 because I need to save lots of money.

Me: But what about School?

Bella: That’s ok mummy. I’ll learn to dance and Strictly is educational!

Me: Can mummy come with you to all the shows?

Bella: Yes, you can mummy. I think you need to learn to dance properly!

🙈💃🏻🤔

I also got told she needed to make a checklist for her trip to the Strictly tour! When I went to get her ready for bed, I saw this note which not only made me a little teary-eyed, but also made me laugh out loud! 😢🤣


If you have a young or little Strictly fan, we’d love to hear the funniest things they’ve said about Strictly recently. Tell us by tweeting @scd_support or commenting below. We look forward to hearing from you.

Cassie 🙂 

The Ultimate Strictly Challenge -💃🏻🏆💃🏻 Let Jives and Tangos Battle it out!

So last week, we launched the Ultimate Strictly Challenge to help us decide the best Perfect Scoring dance in the history of Strictly!

Week one’s categories were The Waltz and the Cha Cha Cha. It saw Lisa and Brendan and Caroline and Pasha battle it out for the crown of Cha Cha Cha Champion and Matt and Flavia and Abbey and Aljaz battle it out for the crown of Waltz winners.

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Thank you all for your votes. They have been checked, counted and verified and we can now reveal that the couples winning their places in the Ultimate Strictly Challenge final are *drumroll and does a samba to create suspense*  are Lisa and Brendan Representing the Cha Cha Cha and Abbey and Aljaz representing the waltz. Well done to both couples. We’ll see you in the final.

Now we can move onto decide week two’s categories! This week we have chosen to let Tangos and Jives battle it out against one another! All you need to do is watch these four videos then vote for your favourite from each dance style in the polls below! You can vote in each poll once a day up until next Sunday at 6pm when the vote will be frozen once again.

Keep voting and Keep dancing people! All your favourites need your votes.

Cassie 🙂

 

Thoroughly Modern Millie – A Review of @modernmillieuk by us and @tufty1985

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Unless you have been living under a (sparkly) rock, you’d have probably heard that the current Strictly Pro Champion, Joanne Clifton, is currently touring in Thoroughly Modern Millie.

Last week, the tour kicked off at the New Wimbledon Theatre and many of us were lucky enough to go and see it. We saw it on Friday, however Sasha @tufty1985, saw the show on Wednesday and agreed to give us a short review of what she thought of the show. Here’s what she and we thought of this wonderful musical!

Sasha’s Review:

Last Wednesday, after a long journey – I arrived at the New Wimbeldon theatre and got settled in to my seat.

From the first second I saw her – I knew Joanne Clifton was meant to play the role of Millie, she shone like a star and was funny and incredibly talented as the small town girl who dreamed of big things.
Michelle Collins as Mrs Meers – stole the show with her comedic timing – and the fantastic scenes made you laugh. Proving again what a talented actress she also is.
But again and again, Joanne impressed everyone in that audience – including myself and I overheard some members of the audience praising her – “she is perfect, and brilliant in this role”, were just two of the things I heard.
And I have to agree – Jo you are a superstar and keep doing what you are doing 🙂 and I will give it ********** stars as it is well worth a watch – strictly/’Clifton fan or not.
One of the major highlights for me also, was getting to meet Jo after – which made a wonderful trip to the theatre even more special.
Our Review:
We have been huge Thoroughly Modern Millie fans for a very long time! Last Summer, whilst watching the film for the first time, my little girl Bella said “Mummy, I think Joanne from Grimsby would make a great Millie!” As soon as we heard she had been cast in the role of this tour, we were determined to go to the Big City to see her in this role!
The show did not disappoint. Not only can Jo dance, but her acting and singing skills are superb and deserving of an Olivier award in our opinion. She shone bright like a star and this role was made for her! She must be superhuman having been able to rehearse and learn her script, songs and dance for the show whilst taking part in and winning Strictly! Joanne, we salute you and you have not just a bright future ahead of you in the world of Strictly, but also in Musical Theatre!
The whole cast are supremely talented and credit also has to go to Michelle Collins was a magnificent Mrs Meers! She proved she is not just great at drama but also is wonderful in comedy moments too!
We absolutely loved the whole show and will definitely be going to see it elsewhere soon! It is really unmissable whether you are a Strictly fan or not! We give it a magnificent 5*s and a glitter ball on top!
Thoroughly Modern Millie is touring around the UK until July! To book tickets and find out more, visit http://modernmillie.co.uk
Cassie 🙂

Strictly Support Group – The Musicals Chat

Tonight we donned something super sparkly and started practising our Jazz Hands, in honour of the start of the Strictly tour and Thoroughly Modern Millie which launched earlier this week!

We began our chat by asking you to tell us “If Strictly were a Musical which musical would it be and why?” You gave us some wonderful answers. Here are some of our favourites:

For our second question of the evening, we asked you to tell us your favourite musical themed performance on Strictly ever! You overwhelmingly voted for this moment, and it’s easy to see why, because it was uh-may-zing:

For question 3, we asked you to tell us the musicals and dances you’d like to see Strictly tackle in 2017 for a musicals week special. We had some wonderful suggestions. Here are our favourites:

For our next question, we asked if Strictly were a musical who would be your leading lady/man and what would be the plot? You gave us some great answers. Here are our favourites:

For our penultimate question we asked you to tell us your favourite Strictly tour or musical show you have ever seen. We had some wonderful answers, like these:

https://twitter.com/anna_isabel29/status/822908950693740546

For our final question of the night we asked you to tell us if you were to award Strictly an olivier award, what or who would it be for? Here are some of your brilliant suggestions:

That ended tonight’s chat. Thank you all for taking part, you all deserve a standing ovation! If you didn’t get a chance to take part, don’t fear! You can still join in the chat by tweeting your answers to @scd_support or commenting below. We look forward to hearing from you.

We’re back tomorrow night from 8pm for the next stage of our Ultimate Strictly Challenge.

Cassie 🙂 

Our Dancing Town – Skipton (A Review)

Those of you who follow our blog will know we’ve been following a new series on BBC Two, called Our Dancing Town.

If you’ve watched Gareth Malone’s The Choir, this follows a similar pattern and follows West End Actor and Choreographer Steve Elias travel around Yorkshire to help this county show its essence through dance.

Tuesday night’s show was the turn of Skipton to shimmy and show us what it was made of! Skipton is a beautiful traditional farming town and it was clear they had a huge dance community and a passion for dance!

Where as last week Steve had struggled to find people to take part from Barnsley, the people of Skipton were right behind him and came in their hundreds (and possibly thousands) to create a dance capturing their essence.

Along the way we met three people with phenomenal dance talent. We met Alice, a student who had studied ballet, modern and tap but had not danced for some time, Elizabeth, a trained ballet dancer who had to give up dance due to illness and Barbara who used to dance Jive but had not danced since her husband died.

Steve not only managed to create what was a brilliant dance tribute to Skipton, but he also reunited the farmers and market traders who had lost touch with one another.

It was great once again to see another community come together in dance and work together to produce what was a wonderful flashmob style production on the streets of Skipton!

If you watched the show, we’d love to hear what you thought of it. Tell us by tweeting @scd_support or commenting below. We look forward to hear from you. If you missed out, don’t fear, you can catch up on BBC iPlayer

Cassie 🙂

 

DWTS Ireland – Week 2 Review from our Irish Reporter @byrnesarahnow

Those of you following our blog will know, we have an Irish Reporter following DWTS with a fine tooth comb, the lovely Sarah Byrne. Last night, she sat to watch a tantastic show 2. Here’s what she thought of the show: 

Hi everyone,

So week 2 took place last night and it was supposed to be all about the girls, however, Hughie’s tan was the talk of the show. Loraine asked him last week “How much tan is too much tan?” Well if we thought it was bad then it was nothing compared to this week. I think the nation as a whole went “Holy God, what has happened to Hughie?”

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Anyway enough about Hughie, the show opened with another great pro dance before we were introduced to everyone and then the girls hit the floor.

Actress Aoibhin Garrihy & Vitali Kizmon – Cha Cha – 21

Comedian Katherine Lynch & Kai Widdrington – Waltz – 18

Model Thalia Heffernan & Curtis Pritchard (AJ’s Brother) – Quickstep – 16

Formerly of Operation Transformation Dr. Eva Orsmond & Sean Smullen – Salsa – 13

RTE Reporter Teresa Mannion & John Nolan – Tango – 16

Actress Denise McCormack & Ryan McShane – Jive – 22

It seemed like the extra week helped as the nerves were not as obvious and they all danced well and with confidence. The only slip up was Ryan (the best pro in the show – his words) had a literal slip and everyone took great pleasure in teasing him about it. The extra week did come with drawbacks as the judges seem to be getting more comfortable and had some harsh comments and scores compared to week 1.

The lads had a group number which was good and Nicky again talked to the judges and the stars. It seems like we wont have a results show, they will have it all in one but I hope they have a musical guest next week just to break it up a bit.

It might have been because of the extra female dancer but the show didn’t seem to take as long even with all the ad breaks. So next week we lose our first Star, let me know how you voted & who you think will go home.

Sarah💚