My favourite Strictly moments, ever!
Anton Du Beke shares his memories of the show
Strictly wouldn’t be the same without Anton. His love of dance started aged 14 when he picked his sister up from a dance class – he was instantly hooked. He joined Strictly in 2004 and became a favourite with viewers. Anton has just released his debut novel, One Enchanted Evening, which is inspired by a 1930s ballroom. Now 52, he’s married to 41-year-old businesswoman Hannah Summers. The pair have 19-month-old twins George and Henrietta.
1 THE DANCE I’LL NEVER FORGET… It was the waltz with opera singer Lesley Garrett. They were the first steps I ever took on the Strictly dancefloor back in 2004, and what a journey it’s been since! When the show first started, there were eight couples (now there are 15) and no group numbers. The production has changed so much – it’s more glitzy and glamorous now.
2 THE ONE THAT DIDN’T GO TO PLAN… Last year, when I did the paso doble with my dancing partner Ruth Langsford, we were just getting to the closing moment when she fell directly on top of me. We couldn’t stop laughing.
3 MY SHOWSTOPPER DANCE… Three years ago, I was over the moon to reach the final with Katie Derham. We did an incredible tango. That and the samba last year with Ruth when I ripped off my suit to reveal a rather fabulous pink ruffled shirt and sequinned trousers!
4 THE MEMORY I’LL CHERISH… Anything I did with Brucie. He was a legend and like a dad to me. We took the mick out of our resemblance by performing Me And My Shadow in series six. It was wonderful joking with Sir Bruce Forsyth!
5 THE FUNNIEST MOMENT… I had some great times with Ann Widdecombe. We did one dance in Blackpool where she wore a yellow feathered dress and I dragged her across the floor. She was also the first celebrity to go aerial – they’re all at it now!
6 MY FAVOURITE PARTNER… It’s hard to say. I don’t really have one, because every year is just another level of fun. The main thing you want from a partner is enthusiasm. The dancing can be taught, but that extra spark has to be there – Judy Murray was wonderful for that. I’ve been very lucky with my partners. I always have a great time.
7 THE DANCE THAT MEANS THE MOST… Okay, so it’s not exactly Strictly, but it’s when I’m dancing with my twins, George and Henrietta. I love holding one in each arm and dancing with them around the house. Being a dad is the best thing in the world. I just cannot wait to see them every day. I’m definitely going to bring them to the studio this series to meet everyone.
• Strictly Come Dancing is on BBC One every Saturday
Anton has wowed us with his smooth moves since the first series