Tap shoes and fake tan at the ready, Strictly Come Dancing is here for its sixteenth series. Tess Daly and Claudia Winkleman are back on presenting duties, with Craig Revel Horwood, Shirely Ballas, Bruno Tonioli and Darcey Bussell ready to judge a new group of nervous celebrities. This year, there are a few changes to really shake things up, including same-sex professional dance partners and a new Couples Choice category. Exciting! Things kick off at 6:15pm on Saturday 22 September with the first live show. Stick with us on this live Strictly news feed to keep up to date with every sequined shake and step that takes place during the performances over the next few months. From the stars' faulty footwork to the judge's catty comments, we’ve got it all covered as it happens right here. All that's left to do is start dancing...
We've got just over twenty minutes to go, folks! So, have you got the takeaway ordered? Are the kids settled with a film in the next room? Popped open that special Strictly Sauvignon blanc? To get you even more in the mood, take a sneak peek at this never-before-seen Strictly detail shared by judge Shirley Ballas.
Instanty relieved to see that AJ Prictchard did not drop Lauren Steadman in the opening credits.
That opening sequence was for Moulin Rouge fans everywhere
The proffessional dancers danced to Elton's John's Your Song and it was BEAUTIFUL.
Danny John-Jules and Amy Dowden
Danny John-Jules opened the show with a super snazzy Foxtrot to the Top Cat theme tune. Shirley called it "outstanding" while Craig said it was "spikey'"before praising his excellent timing! Darcey was literally nearly lost for words - high praise indeed for the first ever dance!
But the biggest DJJ news here is that we are OBSESSED with his flair for pink:
Kate Silverton and Aljaz Skorjanec
Things just got HOT with Kate Silverton and Aljaz Skorjanec dancing the Cha Cha Cha to Tom Jones' Kiss and ending it with a big snog! Bruno shouted, "You don't get that on the new at lunchtime - you can be such a saucy minx!" while Craig called it "heavy with no flair" but said her amazing personality shined through.
Also, can Aljaz read the news every day, please? Thank you.
AJ Pritchard and Lauren Steadman
We were pretty worried about AJ Pritchard and Lauren Steadman taking on the same song and dance that Abbey Clancy once blew fans away with (the Waltz to Des'Ree's Kissing You), but we had no reason to be - there was not a dry eye in the house. Shirley commented on the 'beautiful chemistry' between the two, while Bruno called them Romeo and Juliet. Awww.
Also, congratulations Lauren for winning gold at the World Championships in between training.
Seann Walsh and Katya Jones
Did Seann Walsh and Katya Jones just bring sexy back with their Tango? We think so! Darcey called it a "fierce performance" while Shirley pointed out they had broken the rules of the night by incuding a lift at the end before insulting Seann by saying, "Keep your hair tied back tidy yourself up a little bit!" Craig thensaid Seann "manhandled" Karen with no sophistivcation. OUCH!
Vick Hope and Graziano Di Campi
We're not saying that we've been waiting all night for new boy Graziano Di Campi but... OK maybe we were. Vick Hope gave a VIBRANT perfornance doing the Cha Cha Cha - she even pulled out the splits! The judges couldn't help but comment on how gorgeous the pair looked together, apart from Craig who said he felt like the performance was all about Graziano. Poor Vick!
Susannah Constantine and Anton Du Beke
Well it was never going to be a standard start to the show for this pair, was it? Susannah set the tone with her outrageous outfit, complete with fruit basket on her head, and Anton kept up with the style stakes with some flared, tangerine trousers. Wow, just wow. Judges were NOT complimentary - even Bruno! - but Darcey encouraged Susannah by saying, "I know there's a dancer in you." Susannah then confessed to Claudia that she cried for the first time in years during the rehearsals.
Charles Venn and Karen Clifton
Charles is SUAVE, especially in that very low cut, deep red outfit. He did a great Cha Cha Cha with Karen (who recently spoke out about dancing with ex-husband Kevin Clifton). Craig said "I really and thoroughly enjoyed that," while Shirley said they had "swag" but also thought it was a very "disco" routine. She also commented - twice - on how "cute". Very mixed comments from the judges here...
Ashley Roberts and Pasha Kovalev
Ashley Roberts and Pasha Kovalev dazzled with their Viennese Waltz. Darcey said, "For week one, very nice," while Shirley called it a "beautiful start" and Craig praised it as "gorgeous". It looks like we've got a strong contender for the Glitterball trophy here. Thye scored a super impressive 29!
Dr Ranj Singh and Janette Manrara
Dr Ranj brought some sunshine to the floor in a canary yellow outfit while doing the Cha Cha Cha to Whitney Houston! Shirley called it, "Fantastic and worthy of the semi finals!" and even Craig was brought to tears of laughter, saying that he loved it! Janette praised Ranj for his work as a daughter and fitting in rehearsals in between shifts.
Katie Piper has admitted to being the most nervous of the celebrities, and she has commented on how much this means to her family. She danced the Waltz to Adele's When We Were Young and, although the judges' commented on her nerves, they gave some positive feedback and told her to try and relax and enjoy it. Shirley said: 'You have some great promise."
Graemme Swann and Oti Mabuse
Graeme Swann was cool as a cucumber as he danced the Samba in his cricket whites with Oti Mabuse. Craig said, "Your hands are bit like cricket bats - you're flat and wooden. But the energy was immense!" Shirley described Graeme as, "Like a rough stone that Oti is going to polish and polish and polish." We're not 100% sure what that means but...we think it's a good thing! Bruno then excitedly got to his feet to declare: "He's dislocated his groin for your viewing pleasure!"
Stacey Dooley and Kevin Clifton
Stacey Dooley and Kevin Clifton did a Strictly first! They danced the Quickstep in the opening week, which has never been done before - and it looks like she pulled it off! Darcey called Stacey "a delight with so much promise" and all the judges gave the pair a six! We wonder if Kevin's former partner Susan has tuned in to cheer him on?
Lee Ryan and Nadiya Bychkova
Lee just showed off the 'torture device' that Nadja makes him use (it's literally just an exercise band - he's being a baby!) - but it looks like it's keeping him in shape, as he performed a beaufitul Waltz.There was a little slip up at the beginning, but Shirley said he recovered from it well. Phew! Bruno called him a "confident leader" while Craig complained he had a stern face. "I was trying to do a Richard Gere," replied Lee.
Joe Sugg and Dianne Buwsell
Joe Sugg and Dianne Buswell brought some 80s fun to the show by dancing the Jive to Aha's Take On Me. Bruno called Joe "the biggest surprise" and labelled him a "grasshopper" (again, we assume that's a compliment). Craig said he didn't have high hopes for the YouTuber before declaring: "That performance changed everything." Shirley then added: "You're doing your grandma proud." We're welling up here - could he have received a more positive response from the judges? We think not!
Faye Tozer and Giovanni Pearce
When will the Steps puns stop?! Probably never, and it will be a Tragedy if they do (sorry!). Faye Tozer and Giovanni Pearce finished the show with a Cha Cha Cha - and it was brilliant! Darcey gave it an eight and called it a "wonderful way to close the night" while Bruno confirmed it was the high level of performance for others to contend with. Faye shared painful photos of her injuries earlier this week, so she's done an AMAZNIG job tonight!
Strictly Come Dancing - Episode 1 recap
That's the first Strictly live show finished! What did you think? Did you dig Anton's tangerine trousers, and were you as blown away by Faye and Joe as the judges were? Let us know on Facebook or Twitter. Until next week's second episode, when our first couple will leave, keeeep dancing!