20 professional dancers confirmed for Strictly Come Dancing series 20

Four new pros join the line-up

20 professional dancers confirmed for Strictly Come Dancing series 20, as four new pros join the line-up The four new world class dancers completing this year’s professional troupe are European cup winner Vito Coppola, Chinese National Champion Carlos Gu, former Under 21 British National Champion Lauren Oakley and Latin dance champion Michelle Tsiakkas

PHOTO: Carlos Gu, Lauren Oakley, Michelle Tsiakkas and Vito Coppola

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Strictly Come Dancing will have its biggest professional dancer line-up in history when the multi-award-winning dance show returns this autumn to BBC One and BBC iPlayer, once again bringing glitter, glamour and glorious dancing to homes across the nation.

The four new world class dancers completing this year’s professional troupe are European cup winner Vito Coppola, Chinese National Champion Carlos Gu, former Under 21 British National Champion Lauren Oakley and Latin dance champion Michelle Tsiakkas.

They join the professional dancers already revealed for the upcoming series: Dianne Buswell, Nadiya Bychkova, Graziano Di Prima, Amy Dowden, Karen Hauer, Katya Jones, Neil Jones, Nikita Kuzmin, Cameron Lombard, Gorka Marquez, Luba Mushtuk, Giovanni Pernice, Jowita Przystal, Johannes Radebe, Kai Widdrington and Nancy Xu.

Vito Coppola says: “I am really excited to become part of this family. I cannot wait to start this new adventure and to challenge myself. Strictly sto arrivando! (or: Strictly I am coming!)”

Carlos Gu says: “I’m thrilled to join Strictly and very excited to get started. It’s a new chapter of my life and a new challenge as well. I’m absolutely ready to take on this journey and to shine.”

Lauren Oakley says: “I’ve grown up watching Strictly, always hoping that one day I could be part of the best show on television, doing what I love the most. Now that it’s happening, it doesn’t quite seem real. I can’t wait to start this new sequined adventure and join this incredible family.”

Michelle Tsiakkas says: “Being a professional dancer on Strictly Come Dancing has been my dream ever since I was a little girl. I cannot believe my dream has come true! I’m so grateful to be joining this incredible family and I can’t wait to step on that magical dance floor and give it my all!”

Strictly Come Dancing is a BBC Studios production for BBC One and BBC iPlayer. Executive Producer is Sarah James, the Series Editors are Jack Gledhill and Robin Lee-Perrella and Nicola Fitzgerald is the Series Producer. The Commissioning Editor for the BBC is Jo Wallace.

Strictly Come Dancing returns for its 20th series this autumn on BBC One and BBC iPlayer.

Pictures of the new professional dancers are available from the BBC pictures website.

About

New Professional Dancers' Biographies

Vito Coppola
11-time Italian Latin American Champion Vito Coppola began dancing at the age of 6 and by the age of 10 was winning national championships. His career highlights include being a 3-time World Championship finalist and European Cup Winner. In 2021 he left the competition world as one of its highest ranking athletes to explore on screen opportunities, most recently competing in and winning Ballando con le Stelle, the Italian version of Strictly Come Dancing.

Carlos Gu
Chinese National Champion Carlos Gu is a dancer at the very top of his game. He is a multiple world semi-finalist, placed 3rd at the German Open Championship and became Amateur Latin Rising Star Runner Up at the 2017 UK Open. With further experience in ballroom, ballet and contemporary dance, Carlos brings a wealth of dance knowledge to the Strictly ballroom.

Lauren Oakley
Birmingham-born Lauren Oakley started dancing at just 2 years old and began competing soon after. Early successes include becoming Juvenile Champion at the prestigious Blackpool Dance Festival, winning across both Ballroom and Latin disciplines. She was also crowned Under 21 British National Champion before exploring a career on stage. She has toured all over the world and most recently has been leading lady to Giovanni Pernice and Anton Du Beke in their national tours.

Michelle Tsiakkas
Latin dance champion Michelle Tsiakkas first started dancing at the age of 6 in her home country of Cyprus. There she became an undefeated champion, winning national titles consecutively from 2001-2011 before moving to London to study. Whilst in the UK she continued to compete, representing England at major international championships before joining the world touring dance show Burn The Floor

Source BBC One

July 13, 2022 4:57am ET by BBC One  

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