Craig Revel Horwood almost turned down Strictly Come Dancing fearing it’d be “awful”

Craig Revel Horwood has admitted he thought Strictly Come Dancing would never work when it first launched.

The Strictly judge, who has been on the panel since the first episode, almost turned down the show.

Speaking during his recent All Balls And Glitter Tour, Craig explained he had to be persuaded to sign up.

Craig Revel Horwood
Craig Revel Horwood. Credit: BBC/Guy Levy

Craig explained: “My agent and manager, Gavin, said I absolutely have to do it. I said, ‘No it sounds like car crash television.’

“Celebrities trying to dance in three weeks dancing, with a professional partner who has been dancing their entire life.

“I thought that will never work out – absolutely awful.”

Craig went on to confess he and fellow judge Len Goodman didn’t believe the series would last more than a few weeks.

He shared (via The Sun) “We went. ‘This is dead in the Water’. The sets were moving, there was this horrible red curtain behind us that was swaying in the room.

“I thought, ‘Oh God this is awful.’

“Three weeks went by and the audience viewing figures started skyrocketing and then it won the hearts and minds of the nation.”

And Craig concluded: “Obviously I love it now.”.

Australian-born Craig has appeared on stage across the world in productions of West Side Story, La Cage Aux Folles, Cats, Miss Saigon, Crazy For You and Annie,and also worked as a singer at the Moulin Rouge.

As a director and choreographer, Craig has received two Olivier Award nominations for his work on Spend Spend Spend and My One and Only. His productions have also included the UK tours of Chess and Sister Act as well as the annual Strictly tour.

Craig will be back behind the judges’ desk of Strictly in the autumn for what will be the show’s 21st series.