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Strictly Come Dancing's Janette Manrara teases new celebrity partner – but he's actually an old friend

Keeping us on our toes!

Diane Shipley

The first Strictly Come Dancing live show is on 21 September and as the new series draws closer, excitement is mounting about which celebrities will knock our socks off with their jives and paso dobles, and which will score a "heinous" from Craig Revel-Horwood. But before the series begins, the biggest question of all is of course: which celebrity will be paired with which professional dancer?

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Janette's usual partner is her husband, Alijaz Skorjanec

Cheeky Strictly pro Janette Manrara knows how keen viewers are to find out who will be matched with the celebrities this year, who include Olympic rower James Cracknell and '80s TV presenter Anneka Rice, and so she teased her fans with a so-called partner reveal on Wednesday. The dancer posted a series of behind-the-scenes videos to her Instagram Stories. In one, she appeared in a beautiful silver dress, her make-up perfectly polished and hair in a smooth updo. "I can't tell you guys who it is but just there is my new celebrity partner, I'm looking at him," she grinned at the camera, adding: "He's doing so good, he's going to be amazing."

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Jake Wood joked that he's a pro dancer now

In the next video, which she captioned: "My new partner…" she said: "Guys, I'm going to be really cheeky and tell you who my celebrity partner is going to be." She then panned the camera to reveal EastEnders and Red Dwarf actor Jake Wood, who she danced with in 2014, making it to the semi-final. "They've actually brought me back as a pro," he said, while Janette laughed. "They've given me a partner and I can't tell you who it is yet. I'm super excited, see you on the dancefloor!"

READ: Strictly's AJ Pritchard unveils stylish bachelor pad makeover

The clip was one of several from the set of Strictly. On Tuesday, Janette shared that the professionals had been filming what she called "one of the most epic pro dances to date," adding: "Can't wait until you guys see this." She also shared a snippet from the makeup room, including one in which the show's long-running makeup artist Lisa Armstrong appeared. "There's my husband back there, doesn't need much makeup does he?" she said, training the camera on fellow dancer Alijaz Skorjanec, who she married in 2017.

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