Janette Manrara is to replace Zoe Ball as host of Strictly Come Dancing spin-off It Takes Two.
The professional dancer will be departing the main show in order to co-host the BBC Two series with Rylan Clark-Neal.
“It’s a dream come true to become part of the It Takes Two team!” Janette said. “Although it’s impossible to fill in the shoes of a legend like Zoe Ball, I hope to make her and all of the Strictly fans proud.”
She added: “I will miss dancing on that iconic dance floor weekly, but forever grateful to continue being a part of the Strictly Come Dancing family!”
Zoe Ball was quick to congratulate Janette on the gig, tweeting: “SQUEALS of delight at the news the singular sensation, Latin sensation @JManrara will join @Rylan as host on ITT Gonna smash it gorgeous lady love. Love you ♥️♥️”
Janette first joined Strictly in 2013 dancing with Julien MacDonald. She went on to partner with Jake Wood (2014), Peter Andre (2015), Melvin Odoom (2016), Aston Merrygold (2017), Dr Ranj Singh (2018), Will Bayley (2019) and last year (2020) with HRVY.
With Janette leaving the show’s professional line up, new pro dancers for 2021 are to be revealed.
Janette appeared on the pro cast alongside husband Aljaž Škorjanec together with Amy Dowden, Anton Du Beke, Dianne Buswell, Giovanni Pernice, Gorka Marquez, Graziano Di Prima, Johannes Radebe, Karen Hauer, Katya Jones, Luba Mushtuk, Nadiya Bychkova, Nancy Xu, Neil Jones and Oti Mabuse.
Eve Winstanley, Executive Producer, It Takes Two commented: “We are so excited that Janette will be Cha Cha Cha-ing her way into the It Takes Two family. Her love and passion for all things dance will bring something new and fresh to the show.”
Alex McLeod, Commissioning Editor for BBC Daytime and Early Peak, said: “We know that our viewers are avid fans of Strictly and cannot get enough expert advice, backstage gossip and dancing tips and tricks. I can’t think of anyone better than Janette to do this.
“I am so excited that she is joining our It Takes Two family.”
Strictly Come Dancing will return to BBC One on Saturday and Sundays in the autumn.
Strictly: It Takes Two will air weekday evenings on BBC Two.
Announcing her exit after ten years earlier in 2021, former host Zoe said: “As a massive @bbcstrictly fan I have loved spending my Autumn teatimes with the celebrity dancers, the gorgeous & awesome pro dancers, the judges, my girl Vicky Gill, Rylan, Gethin & of course my main man Ian Waite.
“Time now for some new cha cha challenges. I will continue to support the Strictly family on the Breakfast Show & can’t wait to watch the Class Of 2021 from my sofa.”
Picture: Janette Manrara – (C) BBC – Photographer: Guy Levy