On Monday evening, British paralympian Lauren Steadman was unveiled as the latest celebrity to join Strictly Come Dancing. Appearing on The One Show, she told hosts Alex Jones and Matt Baker that she has already got a background in salsa dancing, and hoped it would be a good step in the right direction when it came to competing. Alex also asked Lauren if she was planning on using a prosthetic arm, to which she replied: "I don't think I will, maybe if I spin it will fly off somewhere and that won't be as elegant as I want it to be!" Lauren said of the news in a statement: "I still don’t think it has properly sunk in that I’m actually going to be part of this year’s Strictly! I have loved the show since I was young, and it’s a huge thing to tick off my bucket list. I’m more nervous about being on stage, performing live and in front of the judges than I am about the Elite Paratriathlon Grand Final next month! But I’m up for the challenge and excited to swap my triathlon kit for dancing shoes and sequins."
This was the second Strictly announcement to be made that day, as earlier in the afternoon, Lee Ryan revealed that he was taking part in the BBC One dance competition on Loose Women. The Blue singer wore a glitter ball mask to hide his face at the beginning of the announcement, and was guided onto the show by panellists Stacey Solomon and Jane Moore. His young on Rayn was in the audience, and said of his dad's participation: "I hope he doesn’t dad dance!"
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Lauren Steadman is joining Strictly!
Joining Lauren and Lee in the new series are fellow celebrity contestants Pussycat Dolls singer Ashley Roberts, journalist Stacey Dooley, author Katie Piper, This Morning's Dr Ranj Singh, radio presenter Vick Hope, cricketer Graeme Swann, Red Dwarf star Danny John Jules, vlogger Joe Sugg, Steps singer Faye Tozer and TV presenter Kate Silverton.
MORE: Kevin Clifton reveals which Strictly pro all the female contestants want to dance with
The new Strictly series is expected to kick off at the beginning of September and the professional dancers have already been in training since the beginning of the month, along with a few new additions to the team. With Brendan Cole and Chloe Hewitt no longer taking part, new dancers Graziano Di Prima, Johannes Radebe and Luba Mushtuk have been announced as new additions – meaning the total number of professional dancers will be higher than any previous year. Louise Rainbow, who is executive producer on Strictly, said at the time: "A huge thank you goes to Brendan from all of us for 15 amazing series of Strictly. We wish him all the very best with his future projects. We would also like to thank Chloe and wish her well."
All the Strictly contestants so far
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