Jamie Borthwick and Nancy Xu light up the Strictly Christmas Special

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The festive season on Strictly Come Dancing is set to be a spectacle of joy and dance, with Jamie Borthwick and Nancy Xu at the heart of the Christmas special.

The duo are one of six couples on the latest Strictly Christmas cast.

In a recent interview, they shared their excitement, experiences, and the unique aspects of participating in this much-loved festive tradition.

EastEnders star Jamie Borthwick spoke about his decision to join the Christmas special. “I was having a conversation the week before I got offered the job that I was going to stop saying no to things,” he explained, “And I thought about it and I said yes. And I thought this is fun, its Christmas, I don’t have to come back every week and improve.”

Nancy Xu, a seasoned professional in her fifth year with Strictly, echoed his sentiment with enthusiasm. “I’m so excited. This is my fifth year of being a part of Strictly, and I have never done a Christmas special,” she shared. “We sing along while we’re dancing, we just want to bring a lot of joy to the audience and ourselves – we want to invite everyone to our party!”

Discussing his journey in dance, Jamie candidly assessed his skills and praised Nancy’s teaching. “I’ve really enjoyed learning a new skill,” he said. “For me that’s the difference between a teacher and a great teacher, and that’s what she has done this whole experience.” Nancy interjected with encouragement, suggesting he give himself a ’10 for effort’.

Their partnership, as they revealed, has been a blend of fun and serious work.

“The couples dancing, and rehearsing with all of the others really has been such a thrill,” Jamie noted. Nancy shared her joy in the partnership, “The first time we met each other, he made me laugh non-stop. He gives it his all and trusts me and tries everything.”

Their costumes for the special, though not yet fully revealed to each other, promise to be spectacular. “Mine is like Eastenders Christmas! It’s really sassy, like animal vibes…,” Nancy hinted, while Jamie described his as a proper tux with tails, dancing to Shaking Stevens’ ‘Merry Christmas, Everyone’.

When it comes to the judges, Jamie humorously expressed a desire to receive some of Craig Revel Horwood’s infamous criticism.

“I hope the judges will be a bit easier on me, I can’t come back and improve every week,” he said, adding, “But, I feel that if I don’t get something negative from Craig, then I haven’t had a Strictly experience.”

The Strictly Come Dancing Christmas special will air on Christmas Day at 4:40PM on BBC One and iPlayer.