Strictly Come Dancing star Katya Jones has been dancing for the majority of her life, and has made some incredible friends along the way – including fellow pro dancer Luba Mushtuk. On Tuesday, the 30-year-old paid a sweet tribute to Luba on Instagram, and shared a photo of them at Blackpool which had been taken from over the weekend, along with a picture of them back in 2004 at the very same venue. In the throwback picture, Katya looked almost unrecognisable as she posed with Luba, wearing a blue lace dress. In the caption, the star wrote: "SWIPE TO SEE. We first arrived at Blackpool tower in 2004 as young girls not knowing where life will take us. We just wanted to dance. 15 years later we performed here with the biggest TV show in the UK and the best dance show in the world. Look how far we’ve come my friend."
Strictly star Katya Jones looked unrecognisable in a throwback photo with Luba Mushtuk
Many of Katya's Strictly co-stars were quick to comment on her post, with Michelle Visage writing: "Love this so much," while former judge Arlene Phillips added: "Love this and love you both." Luba also commented: "Wow, just a few years ago. I was first in Blackpool even before that, time flies so fast, but we look the same." Katya has previously paid tribute to Luba on social media. In January, she shared the story of how they both started out in the dancing world, and how their paths managed to align again and again. "Here is a little story for you. There were two little girls living in Russia," she wrote alongside a childhood snap of the pair. "They loved dancing, they were friends, but they were fascinated by two different things. One loved Italy, another one loved England."
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Luba and Katya have been friends for many years
"But they just worked hard and did what they loved - dancing. Fast forward....Who knew that they will actually end up living in those countries," she added. "@lubamushtuk I found this picture and just thought - isn't it just so amusing how universe has its ways of making things happen... Now the circle has closed and we ended up together on the most amazing show in the world @bbcstrictly!"
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Through dancing, Katya also met Neil Jones, who she was married to for six years and together for 11. The pair have remained on good terms since their split over the summer and regularly spend time together with their fellow pro dancers. Neil spoke about his professional relationship with Katya during an interview with the Radio Times in September, where he explained why their separation won't affect Strictly. He said: "She's my dance partner. We've been together a long time.” Katya also revealed that she had been working on his upcoming tour, Gingerland, saying: "I've designed all the dresses and costumes for our shows. He's going to be busy with [his tour] but the rest of the time we will be doing shows as usual, gigs together and whatever we get offered. Dancing stays the same. Nothing changes."
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