SKATE MATES

Cor­rie Leanne: Soap pals will help me out on ice show STREET PSY­CHO PAT IS PANTO UGLY SIS­TER

The People - - NEWS FEATURES - By Ja­nine Yaqoob TV ED­I­TOR by Vikki White

SHE’S only just tried her skates on but Jane Dan­son has a se­cret weapon for Danc­ing On Ice – her Corona­tion Street cast mates.

Jane – Leanne Bat­tersby in the soap – will be the 14th Cor­rie star to step on to the rink on ITV’S hit show.

Samia Ghadie took part in 2013 and last year Antony Cot­ton and Brooke Vin­cent both com­peted – with Brooke reach­ing the fi­nal.

And Jane, 39, is al­ready call­ing on her col­leagues’ skat­ing skills.

“I’m ner­vous and ex­cited about Danc­ing On Ice,” said Jane. “It’s been all so cloak and dagger.

“Quite a lot of the Cor­rie lot have done it and they’re be­hind me. Brooke’s been bril­liant. And Samia’s my best friend so she’s giv­ing me lots of tips.”

Jane has al­ready be­gun lessons with show stars and Olympic leg­ends Jayne Torvill and Christo­pher Dean.

She said: “You’ve got to be pre­pared and fo­cused as it’s a huge com­mit­ment. Fin­gers crossed it’ll be OK.”

But she con­fessed: “I keep for­get­ting about how scary it’ll be. I’m think­ing about the frocks.”

There is even a chance Jane could part­ner Samia’s French ice skater hus­band Syl­vain Longcham­bon.

Samia fell in love with Syl­vain on the show and their son Yves was born in 2015. Jane was a brides­maid when they mar­ried in Au­gust 2016. “I’ve not met my part­ner yet,” says Jane. “But be­ing paired with Syl­vain would be fun and amaz­ing.”

Mar­ried Jane, who joined Cor­rie in 1997, has sons Harry, 12, and Sam, nine, with exbrook­side star Robert Beck.

Her skat­ing chal­lenge comes as Leanne’s life hangs in the bal­ance af­ter be­ing run over by a car. “I was a bit ap­pre­hen­sive,” she said of the plot. “We weren’t sure what in­juries she’d have. I thought, they’re not life-chang­ing are they? “I’m still happy at Cor­rie. I’m re­ally lucky. I get to do what I want. I sound re­ally smug when I say it out loud. It’s a lovely place to work. It’s a dream job.

“The act­ing game is so pre­car­i­ous and tough and here you get to play out all these amaz­ing sto­ries over and over again.

“The way I feel now I’ll be here as long as they want me.”

Of Danc­ing On Ice – which starts in Jan­uary – Jane said: “We’re very for­tu­nate when op­por­tu­ni­ties like these come along. You have to take it as it may never come up again.” THE last time we saw them to­gether, Pat Phe­lan was stand­ing over Michael Rod­well, coldly watch­ing him die of a heart at­tack. Now the for­mer Corona­tion Street en­e­mies are team­ing up for a joint reign of ter­ror – mak­ing Cin­derella’s life a mis­ery as the Ugly Sis­ters.

Ac­tors Connor Mcin­tyre and Les Den­nis will play panto dames Phe­lina and Michaela.

Connor, 57, whose se­rial killer char­ac­ter was stabbed to death by Anna Win­dass in June, said: “I was just leav­ing Cor­rie so you would think if any of these op­por­tu­ni­ties came up it would be the vil­lain.

“To be do­ing it with Les is fab­u­lous. I think the au­di­ence will make their feel­ings clear.” The panto at Manch­ester’s Opera House will be Connor’s first while Les, 65, is a 22-time vet­eran, in­clud­ing Aladdin on Ricky Ger­vais’s Ex­tras, which is cred­ited with re­viv­ing his ca­reer. Les said: “It will be the tra­di­tional pan­tomime with a lot of laugh­ter and spec­ta­cle.”

BOO!: Les ??? Connor RO­MANCE: Samia and dancer hubby Syl­vain DAMES: Michaela and Phe­lina IN THE WARS: Jane as Leanne suf­fer­ing af­ter a car ran her down AG­GRO: Pat and Michael in Cor­rie LUCKY: Jane still loves her dream job

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