STRICTLY 2019: KELVIN FLETCHER REPLACES JAMIE LAING 0 16

Kelvin Fletcher is ready to slip on some dancing shoes as he joins the Strictly 2019 family!

The actor is best known for playing Andy Sugden in the ITV soap opera Emmerdale from 1996 to 2016, but is now stepping into the Ballroom for a whole new challenge following Jamie Laing‘s departure earlier this week.

Made in Chelsea star Jamie unfortunately had to bow out of the competition early due to an injury, meaning his Pro partner Oti Mabuse will now be paired with Kelvin for the series.

Speaking about taking part in Strictly, Kelvin said: “Is this really happening?! It’s been the most surreal week of my life! I’m a massive fan of Strictly so it’s incredible.”

“I’m so happy that I can be a part of it, but at the same time it’s quite bittersweet! I’m coming in on the back of Jamie’s injury – I keep thinking about him! I can’t imagine going through all this excitement and then having to pull out. My thoughts are with him – he seems like a fantastic guy and I hope he’s doing OK.”

Kelvin will make his Strictly debut in the first live show on Saturday 21st September. 

Here are all of our official couples, starting with the ladies of 2019: Alex Scott MBE and Neil Jones, Anneka Rice and Kevin Clifton, Catherine Tyldesley and Johannes Radebe, Emma Barton and Anton Du Beke, Viscountess Emma Weymouth and Aljaž Škorjanec, Michelle Visage and Giovanni Pernice & Saffron Barker and AJ Pritchard

And for the gents, we have: Chris Ramsey and Karen Hauer, David James MBE and Nadiya Bychkova, Dev Griffin and Dianne Buswell, James Cracknell OBE and Luba Mushtuk, Karim Zeroaul and Amy Dowden, Mike Bushell and Katya Jones, Will Bayley MBE and Janette Manrara & Kelvin Fletcher (replacing Jamie Laing) and Oti Mabuse

Your Strictly judges this year are Shirley Ballas, Craig Revel Horwood, Bruno Tonioli and new judge Motsi Mabuse. Claudia Winkleman and Tess Daly return as hosts, while Zoe Ball is joined by Rylan Clark-Neal for It Takes Two

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TODRICK HALL JOINS THE GREATEST DANCER 0 40

American star of stage and screen Todrick Hall joins Cheryl, Matthew Morrison and Oti Mabuse as the new fourth Dance Captain on The Greatest Dancer, which returns to BBC One in early 2020.

Todrick is a choreographer, actor, dancer, singer, songwriter and director, who has choreographed videos for global superstars including Beyoncé, and most recently starred in and co-executive produced the music video to Taylor Swift’s hit single You Need To Calm Down. He is a recurring judge and resident choreographer on RuPaul’s Drag Race in the USA.

Todrick Hall says: “Thrilled does not even begin to explain how excited I am to be joining the cast and crew of The Greatest Dancer. As a performer who has danced my whole life and been a contestant on a reality competition show, it’s wild to see my career come full circle this way. I’m looking forward to working with the upcoming talent and to join the BBC family for the second season of a show that has proven to be a huge, smashing success.”

Joining Todrick will be fellow Dance Captains all returning from series one, multi-platinum-selling singer Cheryl; Broadway and Glee star Matthew Morrison; and Strictly Come Dancing professional and reigning series one champion, Oti Mabuse. Also back for series two are hosts Alesha Dixon and Jordan Banjo.

Taking over reception will be Ballroom and Latin dance champion and Love Island 2019 finalist Curtis Prichard, who will be welcoming hopefuls to The Greatest Dancer studio as they prepare for the biggest audition of their lives.

Cheryl says: “I am so excited to be back, I absolutely loved it last series and this year promises to be even more amazing, especially with the addition of Todrick, who I’m obsessed with!”

Matthew Morrison says: “Season one of The Greatest Dancer was such a rewarding experience to be a part of. Alongside Oti and Cheryl, it was a privilege to help guide the immense talent who showed us all just how inspiring dance can be. I look forward to seeing how we push the boundaries throughout season two in order to crown our next Greatest Dancer!”

Oti Mabuse said: “I cannot wait to get back to work on The Greatest Dancer with this fantastic team, Cheryl, Matthew, Alesha and Jordan and welcoming newest captain Todrick and receptionist Curtis to the family. I’m excited to see the fresh new talented dancers who are auditioning and ready to leave their hearts on the floor and see who the mirror opens for! Plus I can’t wait to see my amazing winner Ellie perform at Strictly Come Dancing, she’s such a superstar and I’m exceptionally proud of her.”

Auditions for The Greatest Dancer, a co-production between creators Thames (part of Fremantle UK), and Syco Entertainment began on Friday 9 August at the ICC in Birmingham with the series due to air in early 2020. Viewers can get ready to see talent from across the world of dance from ballet to jazz, street to ballroom, contemporary to disco and see if they have what it takes to get 75 percent of the audience vote and open the famous The Greatest Dancer mirror.

TAYLOR SWIFT, LANA DEL REY & LEWIS CAPALDI CONFIRMED FOR RADIO 1’S LIVE LOUNGE MONTH 0 47

Radio 1’s Live Lounge month will return for September 2019, with Taylor Swift, Lana Del Rey and Sam Fender being the first acts to be named on the bill.

Throughout September on Clara Amfo’s show (Monday – Thursday, 10am-1pm), a different artist will take to the Live Lounge each day to perform a mix of their own songs and surprise covers.

Among them will be 10-time Grammy Award-winner and global pop superstar Taylor Swift, as she returns to grace the Live Lounge for the first time in five years. Since her last Live Lounge session in 2014, Swift has seen her sixth studio album Reputation reach No 1 in 13 countries, including the US and the UK. With her seventh album Lover set to drop 23 August, listeners can expect a stellar performance that will include new songs from the singer-songwriter along with some of her biggest and best tracks.

Also returning to the Live Lounge in September will be American singer-songwriter Lana Del Rey, who will be bringing her soulful vocals live to Radio 1’s airwaves ahead of embarking on her next world tour; and North Shields’ Sam Fender, who is set to release his debut studio album this year after being named on Radio 1’s Brit List in 2018. Fender, who won the Critic’s Choice Award at the Brits earlier this year, is sure to bring plenty of Hypersonic energy to Radio 1’s Live Lounge Month.

The Lewis Capaldi Symphony will bring Live Lounge Month 2019 to a close, with Capaldi’s spectacular live performance with the Manchester Camerata Orchestra at Croxteth Park in Liverpool being broadcast for the first time.  

Kicking off on Monday 2 September and running throughout the month every Monday to Thursday until 26 September, audiences can expect to hear from some of most exciting names in music. The full line up will be announced in the coming weeks.

Radio 1’s Live Lounge attracts some of the biggest names across the globe and in the UK with alumni including Ed Sheeran, Ariana Grande and Jay Z. Past Live Lounge tracks from Miley Cyrus, 30 Seconds To Mars and Dua Lipa have attracted over 50 million views each on Radio 1’s YouTube channel.

Sam Fender says: “Can’t wait to be part of Live Lounge Month at Radio 1. Me and the boys had such a blast when we did our last one.”

Chris Price, Head of Music, Radio 1 & 1Xtra, says: “The Radio 1 Live Lounge continues to set the global standard for live studio performance. Intimate and exposing, it’s still the best way to get close to your favourite artists, as well as discover new ones. As every year, Live Lounge Month runs the gamut from internationally renowned superstars like Taylor Swift to emerging UK talent like Brit List alumnus Sam Fender. September is my favourite month of the year!”

Clara Amfo says: “From NYC, London to Liverpool, Live Lounge Month is back for another year and I couldn’t be happier about what the listeners have to look forward to in September!”

All performances from Live Lounge Month can be heard live on Radio 1 and BBC Sounds, and will be available to watch on demand on Radio 1’s BBC iPlayer and YouTube channels.