Anton Du Beke is to join the Strictly Come Dancing judging panel for 2021!
Strictly Come Dancing will be waltzing back onto screens from Saturday night on BBC One with its nineteenth series.
And ahead of the launch, the BBC has unveiled the judging panel for this year with a big change.
Craig Revel Horwood, Motsi Mabuse and head judge Shirley Ballas are all back – and this time they’ll be joined by Anton Du Beke.
Strictly’s longest serving Professional Dancer Anton Du Beke will be taking up residency on the opposite side of the judges desk this year as he joins the judging panel for the entire series, following a two week stint as judge during the 2020 series.
Due to the ongoing uncertainty regarding international travel restrictions caused by the pandemic, Bruno Tonioli, who has been a fixture on Strictly since 2004 and is also a judge on Dancing with the Stars in the USA, will be unable to take part in the series this year.
Anton Du Beke joined Strictly during its first series and is the only professional dancer to have danced in every series to date, bringing plenty of experience and expertise to the panel.
Anton Du Beke said: “My loves I cannot tell you how thrilled I am to be stepping into Bruno’s brogues for the next series of Strictly.
“It’s a dream come true to be judging alongside the best of the best and I promise to be kinder to all the couples than any of them have ever been to me.”
Bruno Tonioli added: “Whilst I am gutted to not be on the show this year there is one person and one person only that could take my place – it’s just a shame they weren’t available…haha! Darlings I’m kidding, I’m kidding!
“Seriously though, I have to tell you, Anton IS Mr Strictly and if anybody is filling in for me, it has to be him. I honestly wouldn’t have it any other way and I am so excited to see him waggle his paddle.”
The show will start in the autumn on BBC One, hosted by Tess Daly and Claudia Winkleman.
Names on the 2021 Strictly Come Dancing line up include Olympian Adam Peaty, cookery author John Whaite, stage & screen actor Nina Wadia OBE, actress Rose Ayling-Ellis and TV presenter and actor Rhys Stephenson.
Also on the cast are broadcaster Dan Walker, TV and social media personality Tilly Ramsay, soap star Katie McGlynn, TV presenter AJ Odudu and McFly’s Tom Fletcher.
Concluding this year’s line up are comedian, presenter and regular Loose Women panellist Judi Love, sports broadcaster Ugo Monye, business guru and TV personality Sara Davies MBE and comic and actor Robert Webb.