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Meet the celebrities taking to the dancefloor in Strictly Come Dancing 2021

Ten celebrity contestants have been announced so far for Strictly Come Dancing 2021 (BBC)
Ten celebrity contestants have been announced so far for Strictly Come Dancing 2021 (BBC)

Ten celebrity contestants have been announced so far for Strictly Come Dancing 2021.

Here is a rundown of who will be putting their best foot forward on the dance floor:

1. Greg Wise

The actor is best known for roles in Sense And Sensibility, in which he starred opposite his wife Dame Emma Thompson, Johnny English, Cranford and The Crown.

The 55-year-old has said he agreed to do the show in honour of his sister Clare, who died five years ago, and who he described as a “huge disco queen”.

Late Night Premiere – London
Greg Wise with his wife Dame Emma Thompson (Ian West/PA)

Wise said: “My gorgeous diva sis, who would have been insane with excitement that her little bro was doing this.

“I will channel her, as her bro can’t dance – but I’m thrilled to be dipping my toes, knees, hips and arms into this wonderful world, and hope to make her proud, and obviously make her laugh.”

He also tried his hand at a spot of baking in 2019 for the Stand Up To Cancer celebrity special of The Great British Bake Off, where he was crowned star baker and received a coveted Hollywood handshake for his wild berry nut cake.

2. Matilda ‘Tilly’ Ramsay

The TV presenter and influencer is best known for presenting the cooking show Matilda And The Ramsay Bunch on CBBC alongside her famous chef father Gordon Ramsay and her family.

The 19-year-old has amassed a following of more than 9.5 million on TikTok, where she regularly posts viral videos with her father.

Strictly Come Dancing 2021
Matilda ‘Tilly’ Ramsay joins the Strictly line up for 2021 (BBC)

She said: “I’m going to put my heart and soul into this and can’t wait to get my dancing shoes on and show my Dad how it’s really done!”

Matilda will also be competing on Celebrity Masterchef Australia later this year.

3. Dan Walker

The BBC Breakfast host says he is “definitely excited, a little bit worried, mostly terrified and a small part of me is considering going into hiding!”

He added: “My kids have only ever asked me to go on two shows… Saturday Mash Up and Strictly. I did Saturday Mash Up this summer so… it’s time to embrace the sequins.”

Strictly Come Dancing 2021
Dan Walker (BBC/PA)

Walker announced earlier this year he was stepping down after 12 years at the helm of BBC Football Focus.

He also presented BBC’s Olympic Breakfast throughout the recent sporting event in Tokyo.

4. Katie McGlynn 

The actress was the seventh contestant announced.

Best known for her role as Sinead Tinker in Coronation Street, she said keeping the news of being in Strictly a secret had been “so hard”.

She added: “I’m really not a dancer, but I’m so excited to learn a new skill on this crazy journey and cannot wait to slip into some sequins along the way.

National Television Awards 2020 – Press Room – London
Katie McGlynn (Ian West/PA)

“Although I do get to have so much fun as an actress, a lot of my roles have involved quite serious and challenging storylines, so I’m fully ready to let my hair down and do something different, even if it is completely outside of my comfort zone.

“I can’t promise that I’ll be the best, but I’m going to give it 110% on the dance floor!

“As long as I don’t fall over I’ll be happy.”

5. Sara Davies

The Dragon’s Den star and entrepreneur will switch business for the ballroom as she joins the line-up.

She said: “My mam and dad are going to be so excited.

“I’m really nervous because so far the producers keep asking me if I can dance.

“Truth be told – I haven’t got a clue!

“I’ve not danced since I did ballet lessons when I was little.

“The business world has taught me that tenacity, drive and determination deliver results, I hope that I can bring that to the dancefloor.

“And I’m excited to see the impact of all those hours of training on my mum tum!”

6. Tom Fletcher

Fletcher is the lead vocalist and guitarist of pop band McFly, who have produced six albums and seven number one singles.

The 36-year-old is the main writer on many of the boy band’s hits and is also credited with penning songs for One Direction and Busted.

The Olivier Awards 2018 – London
Tom and Giovanna Fletcher (Isabel Infantes/PA)

He married longtime girlfriend Giovanna in 2012 and his wedding speech, which riffed on some of McFly’s greatest hits, later went viral after he uploaded it to his YouTube channel.

The couple have continued to document their lives together, including three creative baby announcement videos which delighted fans.

Giovanna, who is a bestselling author, won the 20th series of I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here! in 2020.

7. Robert Webb

The actor and comedian is best known for appearing alongside David Mitchell in Channel 4 comedy Peep Show, where he plays unemployed musician Jez, or in the sketch show That Mitchell And Webb Look.

The 48-year-old has also regularly appeared on comedy panels for Have I Got News For You, Never Mind The Buzzcocks, QI and Mastermind.

British Comedy Awards 2010 – London
Robert Webb (Ian West/PA)

Webb read English at Robinson College, Cambridge and joined the university’s theatre club Footlights, where he met Mitchell.

In 2020, he had major heart surgery after a routine medical check during filming for the second series of his sitcom Back revealed he had a heart murmur caused by a mitral valve prolapse.

Webb has also produced a memoir, How Not To Be A Boy, based on his life growing up in Lincolnshire, and in 2020 he published his first novel, Come Again, with Olivia Colman narrating the audiobook version.

8. AJ Odudu

Odudu began her career as a reporter for BBC Blast on Radio Lancashire and went on to co-host the spin-off Big Brother’s Bit On The Side with Emma Willis and Rylan Clark-Neal and produce the documentary Manhunting With My Mum in Nigeria.

The 33-year-old has also done backstage reporting for The Voice UK and The Voice Kids UK.

She is a qualified personal trainer and sports nutritionist and was appointed as a contributing editor to Grazia magazine in 2021.

Recently she appeared in ITV series Cooking With The Stars and is hosting ITV’s new gameshow Apocalypse Wow, which sees celebrities compete in a series of physical challenges in a bid to win money for charity.

She will join Bafta-winning comedian Mo Gilligan to host a one-off special of morning show The Big Breakfast for Channel 4’s Black To Front day in September, a project which celebrates black talent in the TV industry.

9. John Whaite

The former winner of The Great British Bake off will be part of Strictly’s first all-male partnership.

The chef and cookery author said: “I’m so grateful, excited and nervous to be joining the Strictly 2021 family.

“I’ve been wearing sequins and jazzy attire since I was three years old and can’t wait to hurl myself, full throttle, around the most glamorous dance floor on earth.

“What’s more exciting for me is that I’m going to be one half of the first all-male partnership, which is a great step forward in representation and inclusion.

“Whoever it is I’m paired with, I hope they are up for a challenge as I want our routines to include lots of spectacular lifts.”

10. Rhys Stephenson

The CBBC host said: “I am buzzing to be a part of Strictly Come Dancing 2021. I have dreamt about being on this show, and I know for a fact that it is going to exceed every expectation.

“I cannot wait to experience it all: the costumes, the orchestra, even Craig’s glare! I am ready!”

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