Dancing On Ice 2021: Amy Tinkler is booted from the show after skate-off with Lady Leshurr… as Phillip Schofield jokes he and Holly Willoughby will have to perform after FOUR stars quit series
Amy Tinkler is the latest contestant to be booted from Dancing On Ice following a skate-off against Lady Leshurr.
The retired Olympic gymnast was drafted in to replace Denise Van Outen after she had to quit the series following an injury.
Amy, 21, made her ice debut last Sunday alongside pro Joe Johnson but has now been axed, after the four judges unanimously chose to save rapper Lady Leshurr.
Short-lived: Amy Tinkler [L] is the latest contestant to be booted from Dancing On Ice following a skate-off against Lady Leshurr [R]
Asked how her time on the show was, Amy was in tears as she shared: ‘I’ve had the best time and I’m so thankful to have met Joe.’
Whilst Joe reassured her of their friendship: ‘Nothing’s over.’
Judge Ashley Banjo: ‘Both of you guys literally skated and performed with so much energy and passion in the skate off. I genuinely enjoyed both of your skates. I have to put it down to – in the end – stripped back solo skates. And for that reason, I’m going to save Lady Leshurr and Brendyn.’
John Barrowman added: ‘This is a really tough decision because we’re at a point in the competition where everybody is pushing up to the same level. For the most skating on ice as an individual, therefore I’m saving Lady Leshurr.’
Axed: The retired Olympic gymnast was drafted in to replace Denise Van Outen after she had to quit the series following an injury
Through: Amy, 21, made her ice debut last Sunday alongside pro Joe Johnson but has now been axed, after the four judges unanimously chose to save rapper Lady Leshurr
With all three votes going to Lady Leshurr, Christopher Dean’s vote wouldn’t have changed anything. He still opted to save the rapper and said – ‘I would have been in agreement. Both really strong performances. They both have their own strengths but tonight it was Lady Leshurr’
It was then to Jayne Torvill to give her verdict, admitting it was a ‘tough one’. She said: ‘Both of you gave great performances. Again, going back to the skating, I’m saving Lady Leshurr and Brendyn.’
With all three votes going to Lady Leshurr, Christopher Dean’s vote wouldn’t have changed anything. He still opted to save the rapper and said: ‘I would have been in agreement. Both really strong performances. They both have their own strengths but tonight it was Lady Leshurr.’
At the start of the show, amid the news that a fourth star has quit this year’s series – and that Jason Donovan was unable to perform thanks to a back injury – host Phillip Schofield joked that he and Holly Willoughby would have to perform to make up the numbers.
Opening Sunday’s Valentine’s Day episode, Phil explained that Joe-Warren Plant and his partner Vanessa Bauer were forced to withdraw after they both tested positive for COVID-19, and that Jason – who is competing on the show with professional skater Alexandra Schauman – was advised to rest after suffering from back pain.
Phil turned to Holly and quipped: ‘It’ll be us skating at this rate!’ Holly didn’t seemed thrilled with the notion, nervously giggling and replying: ‘Oh, don’t say that!’
Stepping up? Amid the news that a fourth star has quit this year’s Dancing On Ice, host Phillip Schofield joked that he and Holly Willoughby would have to perform to make up the numbers
No thanks, pal! Phil turned to Holly and quipped, ‘It’ll be us skating at this rate!’ Holly didn’t seemed thrilled with the notion, nervously giggling and replying – ‘Oh, don’t say that!’
Special occasion: The show opened with a nod to judges Jayne Torvill and Christopher Dean as Sunday marked 47 years since they won gold skating to Maurice Ravel’s Boléro at the 1984 winter Olympics
Jason will be back next week, saying ahead of Sunday’s show: ‘I’ve had back pain the past couple of days and I’m under doctor’s orders to take it easy and sit this week out. I’m resting up, I’ll be watching from home and cheering everyone on and I look forward to returning next week.’
He sent a video message from his sick bed, sure to wish everyone luck, promising he would be back soon.
Joe’s exit is the latest in a string of blows, after Billie Faiers, Denise Van Outen and Rufus Hound were all forced to bow out of this year’s show.
The show opened with a nod to judges Torvill and Dean as Sunday marked 47 years since they won gold skating to Maurice Ravel’s Boléro at the 1984 winter Olympics.
Out out out! [L-R] Joe-Warren Plant and his partner Vanessa Bauer were forced to withdraw after they both tested positive for COVID-19; Jason Donovan – who is competing on the show with professional skater Alexandra Schauman – has been advised to rest after suffering from back pain; Billie Faiers and pro Mark Hanretty withdrew from the show after Billie suffered a concussion following a fall during training
Oh dear! [L-R] Denise Van Outen [pictured with Matt Evers last month] was forced to drop out too, after she dislocated her shoulder; Comedian Rufus Houd was axed from the competition last month after he tested positive for the virus twice [pictured with partner Robin Johnstone last month]
Week off: Jason and Alexandra were sure to wish their co-stars luck while they sat the episode out
After this, Sonny Jay took to the ice as Pop-Eye, alongside pro partner Angela Egan as Olive, to end up scoring the highest result of the series thus far for their iconic love story-themed performance.
Following them were Lady Leshurr and Brendyn Hatfield who performed as Anthony and Cleopatra.
Their score came in lower than Sonny and Angela’s, with Jayne even accusing Lady Leshurr of cheating twice, when she placed two skates on the ice when she wasn’t meant to.
Co-judge John seemed more occupied by Brendyn in his hunky Anthony get up.
Sailing through: Sonny Jay took to the ice as Pop-Eye, alongside pro partner Angela Egan as Olive, to end up scoring the highest result of the series thus far for their iconic love story-themed performance
Comin’ atcha! Lady Leshurr and Brendyn Hatfield who performed as Anthony and Cleopatra
All a-flutter: Co-judge John Barrowman seemed more occupied by Brendyn in his hunky Anthony get up
Missteps: Their score came in lower than Sonny and Angela’s, with Jayne even accusing Lady Leshurr of cheating twice, when she placed two skates on the ice when she wasn’t meant to
Here comes the bride: Next up it was the turn of Faye Brookes and Hamish Gaman who performed as Kate Middleton and Prince William
Next up it was the turn of Faye Brookes and Hamish Gaman – with Faye emotional having to spend Valentine’s Day away from her boyfriend.
He sent her gifts, however, and she was seen tearfully FaceTiming him in her VT before her dance with Hamish.
The duo performed as Kate Middleton and Prince William, receiving a lukewarm score because, according to judges, they were ‘capable of so much more’ – a comment that left Faye in tears yet again.
Hamish was suffering an injury, revealing he’d hurt his finger while putting a sock on during the week.
Les miserables: Faye emotional having to spend Valentine’s Day away from her boyfriend
Less than perfect: They got a lukewarm score because, according to judges, they were ‘capable of so much more’ – a comment that left Faye in tears yet again
‘Y.O.U.R means YOUR!’ Next up were Rebekah Vardy and Andy Buchanan, who took on the roles of Ross and Rachel from sitcom Friends
Where have you been? Rebekah claimed she had never watched the iconic series before
He’ll be there for you! They scored well – with the judges praising her for taking on the head-banger move
We were on a break! Holly claimed she was unable to watch Rebekah’s head-banger move
Next up were Rebekah Vardy and Andy Buchanan, who took on the roles of Ross and Rachel from sitcom Friends – despite Rebekah claiming she had never watched the iconic series before.
They scored well – with the judges praising her for taking on the head-banger move, which Holly claimed she was unable to watch.
Eventual losers Amy and Joe were up next, as Bonnie and Clyde – leading to a tiff between John and fellow judge Ashley with the former slamming them and the latter praising them.
Colin Jackson and Klabera Komini performed the last dance of the show, with a Pride And Prejudice theme. Yet Holly claimed was more like raunchy Netflix show Bridgerton with its up-close-and-person moves.
Rita Ora also appeared on the show to perform her new song Bang Bang. Viewers were left slightly baffled, given that the show is live and Rita is in Australia for The Voice, proving her performance must have been a pre-record.
Lady in red: Rita Ora also appeared on the show to perform her new song Bang Bang. Viewers were left slightly baffled, given that the show is live and Rita is in Australia for The Voice, proving her performance must have been a pre-record
Thin ice? Amy Tinkler and pro Joe Johnson were up next, as Bonnie and Clyde – leading to a tiff between John and fellow judge Ashley Banjo with the former slamming them and the latter praising them
Raunchy! Colin Jackson and Klabera Komini performed a Pride And Prejudice themed dance – which Holly claimed was more like Bridgerton
Stealing the spotlight: Host Holly was sure to steal focus amid the performances in her floor-length flowing pink chiffon gown which boasted off-the-shoulder sleeves, a fitted corset and an ostrich feather trim
Pretty: She added a touch of sparkle with dangling silver earrings and she sported complementing pink make-up. Her blonde tresses were styled in an effortless wave, and she tucked her bob behind her ear as she posed for a chic snap on Instagram ahead of the broadcast
Dancing On Ice 2021: A Series Of Unfortunate Events
Graham Bell’s partner Yebin Mok suffers a freak accident after suffering ‘a very nasty wound from an ice blade’.
While it was initially thought she would return to the competition, the injuries were worse than anticipated and she was replaced by Karina Manta. They were voted out on Saturday.
Denise Van Outen announced she’s quit Dancing On Ice after learning she’d fractured her shoulder in an accident during training.
The presenter, 46, shared an Instagram statement telling fans she’d withdrawn the show after being told by doctors the injury would leave her severely limited in training.
Denise will be replaced by retired Olympic gymnast Amy Tinkler, 21, who will make her ice debut this Sunday alongside pro Joe Johnson.
Billie Faiers reveals her grandmother Wendy has tragically passed away
In the wake of the news it was revealed that the former TOWIE star wouldn’t appear in the next episode of the ITV skating show following the death.
It was confirmed by MailOnline on Thursday that Billie, 31, and her sister Sam’s grandmother had passed away aged 77 from pneumonia.
Following the news, a representative for DOI revealed that Billie will miss Sunday’s show as she grieves the ‘devastating’ loss of her relative.
Rufus Hound withdraws from the show after testing positive for COVID.
The comedian, 41, took to Twitter on Wednesday evening to announce in a tweet and accompanying video message that he has sadly had to withdraw from the ITV skating competition.
Show bosses confirmed that Rufus and his professional partner Robin Johnstone have both been axed from Dancing On Ice and will be replaced by Matt Richardson, 29, and his pro-skater partner Vicky Ogden this weekend.
Homeward bound: The stars were seen at the end of the evening being driven home [L-R John, Rebekah and Phil]
Host Holly was sure to steal focus amid the performances in her floor-length flowing pink chiffon gown which boasted off-the-shoulder sleeves, a fitted corset and an ostrich feather trim.
She added a touch of sparkle with dangling silver earrings and she sported complementing pink make-up. Her blonde tresses were styled in an effortless wave, and she tucked her bob behind her ear as she posed for a chic snap on Instagram ahead of the broadcast.
She captioned the upload: ‘Happy Valentine’s Day… tonight on @dancingonice we are celebrating the greatest love stories ever told… see you on @itv at 6pm ♀️✨ dress by @iris_serban shoes by @renecaovilla Jewellery by @noafinejewellery’.’ [sic]
PPE: The contestants and pros masked up as they were shipped from the Hertfordshire studios in the back of their cars
DANCING ON ICE 2021: THE SKATING COUPLES
Lukasz Rozycki and Mykleene Klass
Myleene, 42, is a musician and radio host.
It’s a really positive way to start 2021 after 2020…
When else would I get this chance? I’m a mum of three, a step-mum of two, there’s seven of us in our blended family. When else would a mum like me get the chance to learn a new skill. And I spent all of lockdown teaching children and teaching my music classes that went viral and now it’s time for me to learn a new skill and be able to walk away with a bum like J-Lo’s! That’s the real reason I’m here! I am going to work so hard!
There’s lots of positive things to look forward to but do you have any fears about doing the show?
Oh, I’m terrified of all of it! I’m terrified of my piano fingers getting rolled over. I don’t know why that’s a recurring fear but it just is. I think any time I’ve done a concert I’ve had to sign an indemnity insurance clause and I’ve had to sign all of these things that look after my fingers and now I’m actually in the line of fire I feel like I’m really going to have to look after my fingers. By the nature of what it is I feel quite protective over my fingers. As a pianist I have to look after my fingers but I also have to life my life and I love the fact that I’m going to walk away with a new skill, new butt and fabulous wardrobe!
Second to this, what’s the scariest thing you’ve ever done?
I did the jungle and I remember when they asked me what my fear was I said dying. I thought if I say rats or spiders or snakes they’re going to land those on my head but it turned out they locked me in a coffin anyway so I’ve done that! How competitive are you feeling?
Are you in it to win it?
I’m in it because I want to be able to stop! I want to be able to do that move where you spin and stop and spray the ice. I’m that person where when I’m on the ice I will hold on to you, I will hold onto the sides, I will hold onto passing kids, I can’t stop. That’s not to say I can’t go fast, I just can’t stop!
Jason Donovan and Alexandra Schauman
Jason, 52, is an actor and singer, best know for playing Scott Robinson in Neighbours.
How are you feeling about it all?
Cautiously optimistic. My focus is on the skill of skating and avoiding injury! That is my concern.
Is that your biggest fear, injury?
Yes, it is! It’s not a solid floor and ice is not forgiving. That’s the jeopardy. I think for me, personally, I have other obligations beyond Dancing on Ice so those have to be considered and balanced. You want to do the best show you can but you want to do a show that’s safe as well. It’s that line between sexy TV and safe TV!
What is the biggest appeal about doing the show?
I think we’re all having a very odd year. I think in any other year I might not have had this much time to concentrate on something and I think if you’re going to do a show like this you need to dedicate your entire time to it. I couldn’t be doing a show like this and look a producer in the eye if I was doing theatre show and say look I’m going on the ice for three months! It’s a unique opportunity, it’s a skill, it’s structure in a time when there’s not much structure in our lives. It’s good to keep fit, I really like that aspect of it. And my nine-year-old daughter is pretty pumped at the idea of seeing me dance on skates so that’s a big thing!
Second to this, what’s the scariest thing you’ve ever done?
Become a dad! That’s pretty scary and it’s ongoing. I’ve got three. One’s 20 and it doesn’t get any easier.
Are you ready to embrace all the sequins and sparkly outfits?
Listen, I’ve done Priscilla Queen of The Desert for two years on stage. I was in the Rocky Horror Show. I wore a coat of many colours! This is positively toned down. I am more than comfortable with fantastic costumes.
Faye Brookes and Hamish Gaman
Actress Faye, 33, is best known for her role as Kate Connor in Coronation Street…
Have you been on ice much before?
I have. My dad used to play ice hockey so we’d get on the ice with him as kids. Telling him today that I was getting my boots was quite exciting. This is going to be really nice for him because it’s something we enjoyed as kids and I don’t get to see my dad that often because he works away on the oil rigs. Ice skating for me was a childhood lovely memory so to now do it as a competition is beyond all my wildest dreams.
Do you have any fitness goals from taking on the challenge?
I do like to keep myself very fit anyway. I train every day at the gym. I love it. If I wasn’t in the career I’m in now I probably would have become a personal trainer or instructor of some sort. I like that structure of training, being guided on what to do and I like that. Taking care of myself – mind, body, spirit is so important. If anything, it will make me even more fit. I just love challenges, give me anything. I’m up for it! I’m hoping that will serve me well. I’m hard on myself, I’m strict, I really am.
How do you think you’ll react to potential criticism from the panel?
I’m used to criticism. I think their criticism will be constructive. I don’t think I should be afraid of them. I’m hoping John Barrowman will be on my side because he too is from a musical theatre background. I just adore that man! I’m happy to take on criticism. It’s all part and parcel of learning a new skill. It’s part of the process and hopefully they won’t be too mean!
How do you think your Corrie family will react to seeing you take part?
They all know that I’m a complete ‘twirly’ and I’m always dancing between takes and stuff so they’d imagine me taking on something like this. They’re going to be very supportive.
Klabera Komini and Colin Jackson
Colin, 53, is a former sprint and hurdling athlete, who has since carved out a career as a TV personality.
You took part in Dancing On Ice Goes Gold a one off special that featured you and fellow Olympians. What made you want to come back and give the show another try?
I think truly it’s unfinished business really. On that show we only had very limited time on the ice to try and learn a real skill. Doing the actual show gives you far more time to actually hone something and to learn something properly, more in depth. For me I had a bit of a taster back then, I’d never skated before and I’ve never skated since! I literally haven’t gone on the ice since but I really wish I had now. I’ll have to relearn everything as it’s been such a long time. It genuinely feels brand-new, brand-new partner and everything so I’m excited.
Do you have any fears about taking to the ice?
Oh yeah! I remember what it was like falling and that is uncomfortable. You do not want to be spending your time flat on your back. That is the jeopardy though when you’re working on a slippery surface. It can bite you on your butt if you lose your focus.
What’s the biggest appeal about doing the show?
It’s a life skill and the opportunity to work with true professionals who are great at what they do. It’s an honour to be able to do that, there’s only a certain amount of people who get that opportunity and I’m one of the lucky people to have the opportunity so, for me, it’s a personal challenge, a great challenge and with the best people that I could possibly ask to go on this journey with. I’m looking forward to that more than anything else.
You sound quite unfazed by it so you’re not put off by doing any of the lifts or daunted by a headbanger?
The reason why I feel confident is because I know I’m in the hands of professionals and when you’re in that position they will know what you’re capable of. They won’t put themselves or me in a dodgy position and that is the important thing so that fills you with confidence already. Will I be challenged? Of course I will be! So, there’s excitement in that. Also, I have that sense of confidence that I won’t be exposed to doing dangerous things that I’m not absolutely capable of doing. You’ve got to accept that you’ll be pushed. It’s a LONG time since I’ve really had to be learning something at the beginning. When you think about it, when you retire from sport you retire at the top of your game. You know everything about it so if you pick it up again you’re only really brushing up on already known skills. This time round doing this, I’m right at the beginning. I really have to test myself again and see what I’m like as an adult learner, not as a kid learning.
Rebekah Vardy and Andy Buchanan
Wife of footballer Jamie Vardy, Becky is 38 and a TV personality.
If you had to describe your strengths and weaknesses to your professional skating partner what would they be?
My strength is my determination. I don’t give up and that’s my mantra really – live by the blade, die by the blade is what I would say! My weaknesses – I think I’ll have to throw the resting bitch face in there! I have this resting bitch face and I know I’ve got it but I’m smiling on the inside. I really am! To other people it looks like I’m miserable. Now the Botox is wearing off hopefully the happy features will start coming through.
A lot of people underestimate how tough the training schedule is, how prepared are you for that?
I’ve not thought about it too much but I probably have underestimated it! It’s part of what we’re doing though and you’ll get 100 per cent out of me so let’s do it.
How daunting is the prospect of lifts and headbangers?
Ugh. I just know I’m going to be the first one who has to do it! I’ve probably had a few times where I could bang my head in frustration but I’ve certainly never gone out to do it on ice! That’s scary.
Have you watched the show much over the years and thought you’d like to take part?
I never thought I’d have the opportunity to take part and I love the show. I think it’s great. I love the glam, I love the sparkles and I love being able to watch it with the kids.
How do your family feel about you doing the show?
The kids are SO excited. They are all like ‘mum, can we come and watch you?’ I really hope they can. It would be really good if they can.
And you mentioned the glam on the show which it’s really known for, how do you feel about getting into all the sequins and sparkle each week?
I am totally up for embracing that! I want a Britney jumpsuit.
Robin Johnstone and Rufus Hound
The 41-year-old is a comedian.
Are the fitness goals a big part of the appeal then?
Yes, I am terrible at being self-motivated but if you give me a job where I have to be fitter or stronger then I’ll get fitter and stronger. If there’s not a pay check at the end of it then why would I go to the gym when there are pubs?
So, what’s the biggest appeal about doing the show?
I have been unemployed for six months!
Ever fancied ice-skating?
Learning a new skill?
In it to win it?
I wouldn’t have done this show for love nor money had it not been for the fact that the entire world stopped and everything I do to earn a living doesn’t exist. At the point that is true, if ITV ring me and say do you want to learn ice skating for 3 months and do a bunch of dances and be in people’s homes in the most miserable part of the year being part of a show that makes people happy and spreads joy, is something people watch as a family then my choices are I can do that or sit at home feeling massively depressed. Or wait for something doubtlessly less joyful to turn up. So, why I’m doing the show is for money because I haven’t been able to earn any money and I have a mortgage and a family. That doesn’t mean I’m not looking forward to it and it doesn’t mean I don’t want it to go well.
Denise Van Outen and Matt Evers
46-year-old Denise is a performer and presenter, best known for The Big Breakfast.
Have you got any fitness goals from doing this as well?
Of course. I never used to do any exercise years ago and I do now. I’m 46 and I want to keep my body in shape, tone my bum and thighs and prevent the old middle-aged spread!
Would you say this is the scariest thing you’ve taken on?
How competitive do you feel about it – are you in it to win it?
Well, this is how it is with everything I do – I don’t ever go into anything thinking I’m going to win it but as the game picks up and the competition picks up you do get competitive, you can’t help it. I wouldn’t say I’m like I have to win this. I just want to learn to skate, do the best that I can and hope that I could win it. It’s more proving to myself and enjoying it and learning to do some of the tricks that I’ve watched other people do. But don’t get me wrong – I’d love to do Bolero! I was a kid when I watched that. I’ll always remember seeing Torvill and Dean and just being in awe of them.
How do you feel about skating in front of the panel and are you ready for their feedback?
Yes, I’ve met Jayne and Chris before and I know they don’t mince their words when they critique you. I can take criticism because I’ve had to dish it out myself in the past too. I’ve been a judge so I know what a judge’s role is so I’m ready to take the constructive criticism.
If you were to describe to your pro partner what your strengths and weaknesses are, what would you tell them?
I would say I was a dancer in my youth and the last time I danced was on Strictly which was in 2012. I’m a very good dancer in my kitchen after a few glasses of wine but that’s as far as it goes and I’ve never taken it to the rink! I think if I can master the skating then the old dancing ability will hopefully come back and I can marry the two and hopefully be elegant and graceful…rather than disgraceful.
Angela Egan and Sonny Jay
Sonny, 27, is a singer and radio presenter, best known for his daily Breakfast Show on Capital Radio.
Apart from learning new skills, have you got any fitness goals?
I really want to get fit. I’ve already started working with a personal trainer. Only because I firstly want to go out every week feeling comfortable and confident. I think if you do feel like that you’ll really perform well. And this is a good opportunity to get fit. I’m hoping I’ll come out of the show in the best shape I’ve ever been in. That’s the goal.
Second to this what is the scariest thing you’ve ever done?
I was on Britain’s Got Talent in 2012 and this is scarier. When I did BGT I was with two other people doing that. That was scarier because I realised it was one of the biggest things I could ever do. This time I’m doing it on my own so I can’t look to my two mates.
How competitive are you and are you in it to win it?
I didn’t realise how competitive I am until I got confirmed for this show and now I want to win it! I don’t think you should ever come onto a show like this and not want to win it. I really want to take it seriously, learn a skill and just do well enough that hopefully people want to see more each week.
How do you think you’ll react to any potential criticism from the panel?
I don’t mind criticism. I think the judges all actually give constructive criticism and the show for me is all about a journey and if you can come back week after week and be better than the week before that’s what it should be about. Getting Torvill and Dean to give you feedback on skating – I mean you can’t buy that! That’s ridiculous so bring it on.
A lot of people underestimate how rigorous the training schedule can be, how are you feeling about that?
I’m genuinely excited to leave my show in the morning, go on to do something else. I really am. I’ve got a little Vespa and I’m going to nip on my Vespa straight from work to training each day. I’ve got it all planned.
Joe-Warren Plant and Vanessa Bauer
The 18-year-old actor is best known for his role as Jacob Gallagher in Emmerdale.
How do you think you’ll react to potential criticism from the panel?
It’s part of the experience isn’t it. Criticism is there to help you so you’ve got to take it as it is. It’s not something that I’d be upset by, everybody gets criticism and it’s there to help me become better.
If you had to describe your strengths and weaknesses to your professional partner what would they be?
I wouldn’t say I’m particularly strong so that’s something to work on before trying a headbanger! And my balance isn’t always brilliant BUT I’m unfazed by taking on all the lifts.
What made you decide to take on the show this year?
I think my age. With me being 18 I probably have less of a fear factor. Just felt like a good time to go for it.
Dancing on Ice is renowned for its sequins and fake tan and make up, are you looking forward to that part?
I love all that aspect. I did a bit of theatre some time ago, I played Oliver and I loved it. Getting dressed up in the costumes is all part of the fun and I’m looking forward to it.
How do you think your castmates at Emmerdale will react to you doing Dancing on Ice?
They’ll be so supportive, Roxy [Shahidi] and Matthew [Wolfenden] especially. Matthew won the show in 2012 of course and he’s always said you should do it to me. He told me it takes a lot of hard work and the dedication has got to be there but I’m ready for it. I know Matthew was really busy with storylines when he did it so he said to me listen, if you were ever to do it remember that it takes a lot of work. He’ll be over the moon for me doing it I think.
Graham Bell and Yebin Mok
Graham, 54, is an ex-Olympic skier, who is also a TV presenter, adventurer and journalist…
In it to win it?
I’m competitive but I’d rather go into it with the goal of trying to achieve what I can possibly achieve. The winning of it is something I don’t have control over. I can control how well we perform – ‘we’ because it is a team event. From watching the show in the past it’s about developing that trust with your partner. My goals are to try and perform well, to try and skate well and to put on a good show that the outcome of winning it – I wouldn’t put money on myself!
How do you feel about receiving feedback from the panel?
Feedback is a gift. It’s whether you can take it or not that’s the key. I like feedback, it’s really important. I’ve never been involved in a judged sport. In fact, a lot of sports that I’ve got into after ski racing have been against the clock. The clock never lies but this is a different thing. It’s a different beast.
Have you met Torvill and Dean before?
I met them in 84! It was my first Olympics. I was 18 and I raced the men’s downhill, didn’t ski particularly well but I had a great time. I got arrested stealing an Olympic flag. Best party of my life! I had never been to Sarajevo before either and I had a great time.
Would you describe yourself as a bit of an adrenaline junkie then?
Yes! In fact, for Ski Sunday I did a psychological analysis test and I came up very high on thrill seeker, short attention span, easily bored. All of those kinds of things. Generally, I don’t get scared by things.
Lady Leshurr and Brendyn Hatfield
Lady Leshurr is a 30-year-old rapper.
A lot of people underestimate the training they’ll have to put in, how prepared are you for that?
Yes, I’m prepared. Because I want to learn in general I feel like I’m going to get really invested. As soon as I get on the ice and start seeing progression I know I’ll want to push myself to get better and better.
How daunting is the prospect of lifts and headbangers? Umm…someone else said this headbanger word, what is that?
Well, your partner would hold you at your ankles and spin you around essentially…
[nervous laughter] I literally don’t know what I’m getting myself into! Initially I thought another celebrity was going to be my partner and I would be a bit concerned. Now I know it’s a pro, I’m going to trust in him. And I’m only 7 and a half stone – it would be easy to fling me around! Really, I don’t think I have anything to worry about…I hope!
Dancing on Ice is known for it’s glamorous make-up, false eyelashes, sequins, how do you feel about getting your glam on each week?
Listen, my mouth stretched so wide when they told about feathers and glitter. It reminds me of when I did theatre work. It’s dress-up! I am looking forward to that most of all. The outfits will be amazing. The Lion King performance last year, the gargoyle! I love it.at’s better than doing it in front of millions of people.’
Mark Hanretty and Billie Shepherd
Billie, 30, is an ex-TOWIE star and reality personality.
If you had to describe your strengths and weaknesses to your professional partner what would they be?
I have got slight rhythm and I did learn a routine for my wedding. It was fun, nothing serious and I was surprised at how quickly I picked that up. Kimberly Wyatt form The Pussy Cat Dolls taught us the routine and filmed it so we could watch it at home and practice. I watched it back and I thought my dancing looked ok, I didn’t do too bad and it was just on one session. My biggest weakness is definitely my nerves.
How do you think you’ll react to the potential criticisms from the panel?
I do think my face says it all, I can’t hide it. Its constructive criticism so I would take it on board to try and better myself.
People talk about the fear factor associated with the show, how much of an adrenaline junkie are you?
Not at all. Before children I used to do everything but since having kids I’m so much more of a chicken. I’ve just become a little bit more cautious, although I’ve signed up to this show and I’m told its dangerous!
How daunting is the prospect of lifts and headbangers?
I was watching clips of Jorgie Porter when she was on the show and she was amazing. I think if I’m good enough I would love to do them. When you think of Dancing On Ice you think of someone doing the headbanger. I think you’d have to feel confident enough to be able to do it but that would be my goal to be able to lifts and the headbanger.
So why did you decide to take part now?
It’s a personal challenge. I’ve never pushed myself out of my comfort zone, I’ve always done things in TV that I feel comfortable with and if something came in I’d rather miss the opportunity than push myself. I think it’s an opportunity I shouldn’t miss out on, I just had to go for it and do it and hopefully I’ll do well.
What do your family think about you taking part in the show?
They are really excited. I know it’s going to be really hard and very full on and I might not be around as much when we are rehearsing but I think it will be good for my six-year-old daughter Nelly to see me do this. I think it’s going to be cool for her to see her mum taking part in the show. She loves ice skating.
Do you know anyone who has taken part in the series and, if so, have they offered any advice?
I do know Gemma Collins but I haven’t reached out to her. I don’t know if I’d get from Gemma what I want to hear. I used to see her when she was training for it and she would say it was really hard and she was exhausted. I know it’s going to be really hard, I’m prepared for that. There are so many positives that I think I’m going to get from taking part.
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