'Strictly Come Dancing 2021': first celebrity contestants revealed

The award-winning UK television series returns in autumn with a fresh line-up of competitors and four new professional dancers

'Strictly Come Dancing' has been airing since 2004. BBC
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The latest line-up of celebrities set to star in the UK's Strictly Come Dancing 2021 series was announced.

Making their grand entrance to the famous Strictly ballroom in Blackpool for the first time are children's television presenter Rhys Stephenson, chef John Whaite, McFly singer and guitarist Tom Fletcher, presenter AJ Odudu and comedian Robert Webb.

Blue Peter presenter Stephenson said: “I am buzzing to be a part of Strictly Come Dancing 2021. I have dreamt about being on this show, and I know for a fact that it is going to exceed every expectation.”

Running since 2004, Strictly Coming Dancing 2021 is back for its 19th season and will no doubt be bringing dancing, music and glamour back to Saturday and Sunday night TV across the UK.

Rhys Stephenson hosts the 'Blue Peter children's show. BBC

Fletcher is best known as a lead vocalist and guitarist in McFly, one of Britain’s most successful bands. Having wrote 10 UK No 1 singles for McFly, he's also written many chart-topping songs for bands like One Direction, Busted and 5 Seconds Of Summer.

“I think the fact that I’m actually going to be dancing on Strictly this year has only just started to sink in while I’m writing this! I’m incredibly excited, of course, but also totally terrified! My kids were excited too until I started showing them my best dad-dancing in the kitchen,” said Fletcher.

Bafta-winner Webb is a television, film and theatre actor known for his role in Peep Show and his comedy partnership with David Mitchell. Odudu is a former The Voice and Big Brother’s Bit On The Side presenter and Whaite is a chef and 2012 winner of The Great British Bake Off.

The remaining celebrity contestants set to participate in the show are still to be announced by the BBC.

Four new professional dancers join the 2021 cast

Tom Fletcher of the McFly music band. BBC

As well as a slew of new celebrity faces, this year's Strictly will also welcome four new professional dancers to its line-up. Joining the team on the hit show are dancers from South Africa, Ukraine, Poland and the UK.

Kai Widdrington from Dancing With The Stars Ireland and Jowita Przystal, winner of BBC One's The Greatest Dancer 2020, join the team.

Also set to put the celebrities through their paces are former Let’s Dance Germany professional Nikita Kuzmin, and the reigning South African Latin Champion Cameron Lombard.

The four join the existing team of dancers in the popular series including Oti Mabuse, Gorka Marquez and Giovanni Pernice.

Updated: August 06, 2021, 12:19 PM