Shirley Ballas spills all on Strictly Come Dancing 2021 – line up, new pros and same sex couples

Shirley Ballas has shared all on the upcoming series of Strictly Come Dancing.


The head judge will be back this year alongside Motsi Mabuse and Craig Revel Horwood while Anton Du Beke will sit in for Bruno Tonioli who is unable to take part this year due to ongoing travel restrictions due to the pandemic.

Appearing on ITV’s Loose Women this week (3 August), Shirley gave the latest on the new run due to begin in the autumn on BBC One.

She teased of the line up: “Well let me tell you, you have never seen such celebrities as what you are going to see on this particular show.

Shirley Ballas
Shirley Ballas

“I have to say, [Strictly Come Dancing’s executive producer] Sarah James she just delights every time. She tweaks here, she tweaks there, she’s outside the box.

“Just when you think it couldn’t get any better, it does! I’m telling you, hold onto your seats and your crash hat cause you’re gonna need it!”

Shirley was quizzed on rumours that the show will see more same sex couples after last year saw Nicola Adams and Katya Jones become the first ever all female pairing.


Shirley was tight lipped but said: “Well there’s all sorts, the rumour mill is going! All I can tell you is put your crash hat on and wait for an exciting show. You are going to be mesmerised!”

The Strictly judge went on to speak about the show’s four new professionals – Dancing With The Stars Ireland proKai Widdrington; former Let’s Dance Germany’s Nikita Kuzmin; reigning African Latin Champion Cameron Lombard; and The Greatest Dancer champion Jowita Przystal.

“Four brand new, beautiful professionals, I mean look at these gorgeous, gorgeous people,” she said. “And I can tell you they’re as lovely on the inside as they are on the outside. I’m absolutely delighted that everyone is going to see these boys and girls.”

Meanwhile, Shirley explained that almost everything would return to normal this year after the pandemic forced a number of changes to last series.

“It will be back to normal, we’re hoping there will be an audience,” Shirley said. “There will be no Blackpool due to the fact that backstage there is not enough changing facilities with good social distancing, so Sarah James decided that it wouldn’t be acceptable to go there – which is absolutely amazing.

strictly come dancing new pros
Strictly’s new pros

“But we will still have everything at Elstree and I’m sure she’s got lots of other delights up her sleeve. And we will get 13 shows and we will get all the celebrities.”

Strictly Come Dancing typically begins in September on BBC One.


The first celebrities on the line up are expected to be confirmed in the coming weeks.

Picture: Shirley Ballas – (C) BBC – Photographer: Guy Levy