Love Island star Zara McDermott embraces the Strictly sparkles

Strictly’s Zara McDermott embraces the sparkles as she poses alongside Bobby Brazier and Angela Scanlon in first look images and confesses: ‘If I get a three I’ll be happy’

It’s not long now until the celebrities hit the dancefloor and this year’s contestants have now been truly Strictly-fied as the stars posed for a photoshoot ahead of the new series.

With the launch show just a week away, the 15 contestants are deep in rehearsals as they prepare to meet their professional partners. 

And the new cohort looked incredible as they slipped into sparkly gold and black outfits and posed up a storm, much to the delight of fans. 

Love Island star and presenter Zara McDermott, 26, led the glamour alongside Angela Scanlon and Bobby Brazier. 

The television personality dazzled  in a fringed gold cut out minidress and revealed she will be happy if she gets a three from the judges. 

Sparkling! Love Island star Zara McDermott, 26, embraced the Strictly sparkles as she confessed: 'If I get a three I'll be happy'

Glam: Angela Scanlon has her dancing shoes on as she gears up for the live shows

Cheeky chappy: Bobby Brazier is also warming up for the dancefloor as he joked that 'when a lady gets stricter with me, I seem to get a little bit cheekier!

Sharing her excitement for the start of the show, the star confessed: ‘I am a Strictly superfan.

‘I’ve been watching this show since I was a seven-years-old dancing around the living room with my nanny.’

When asked how she feels about dancing live on national television she admitted ‘it’s not something that I’ve thought too deeply into at this point, because I think I will get overwhelmed.’ 

Opening up about her fear of the notorious Craig Revel Horwood, Zara said: ‘If I get a three in week one I’m happy.’ 

And one thing is for sure, she is ready to embrace the sparkle and glam that comes with the dancing world. 

‘I’m excited for the spray tans, for the hair, for the makeup, for the whole looks,’ she confessed. 

Meanwhile, cheeky chappy Bobby is also warming up for the dancefloor as he joked that ‘when a lady gets stricter with me, I seem to get a little bit cheekier.

‘So the more strict someone is with me, the more cheeky I want to be. So they’re going to have to be patient,’ he confessed.  

It’s been a week of highs for the EastEnders star who won the award for best Rising Star at the National Television Awards on Tuesday. 

Asked about why he signed up for the show he said ‘I love to dance! So so so so so so so much,’ he laughs ‘and the professionals. To be able to dance with a professional dancer, what a blessing.’ 

The model always seems to be in great spirits and he promised to bring joy to the series, ‘I can just see myself with a smile on my face most of the time.’ 

Wow: Layton Williams is ready to hit the dancefloor as he teased he's going to bring 'a whole lot of camp and maybe some drama'

Looking dapper: Les Dennis sure scrubbed up well for the Strictly shoot

Swapping the court for the dancefloor: Annabel Croft looked sensational in the gold number

From the cobbles to the ballroom: Ellie Leach has her whole Coronation Street family behind her ahead of the live shows

Raring to go: Soapstar Adam Thomas is ready to challenge himself and get dancing

Legs eleven: Angela Rippon showed off her slender pins as she dazzled in the shoot

The celebrities posed together for the first time ahead of making their show debut on Saturday 16 September where viewers will finally seeing which pro partners the celebrities will be paired with.

In the official photo of the 2023 line-up, all the ladies put on a leggy display as they rocked glamorous gold dresses for the group photo.

Meanwhile, the gentlemen looked dapper in a variety of looks in black, gold and neutral hues.

This year’s Strictly will see Amanda Abbington, Angela Rippon, Layton Williams, Krishnan Guru-Murthy, Eddie Kadi, Angela Scanlon, Zara McDermott, Adam Thomas and Nikita Kanda take to the floor. 

Meanwhile, the full line-up was revealed as the professional dancers took centre stage in the show’s dazzling first trailer.

In the new clip filmed at Tate Britain in London, Jowita Przystal is seen taking in the sights with Vito Coppola, while Graziano Di Prima and Katya Jones dance.

All together: The celebrities posed together for the first time ahead of making their show debut on Saturday 16 September

Smart: Actor Nigel Harman will also take to the floor, let's hope there's not a casualty!

Gorgeous: Amanda Abbington oozed confidence in the snaps

Worlds away from reporting: Krishnan Guru-Murthy couldn't have looked further away from his day job at the BBC

Summer Loving: Nikita Kanda is hoping she gets the chance to play Sandy from Grease in this year's series

Suited up: Comedian Eddie Kadi looked suitably stylish in his white suit jacket

He's ready! 'Sequins, glitter, spray tan? I'm there' Jody Cundy is ready to be Strictly-fied

Lining the steps of the iconic building, they were joined by Dianne Buswell, Nadiya Bychkova, Carlos Gu, Karen Hauer, Neil Jones and Nikita Kuzmin.

Gorka Marquez, Luba Mushtuk, Lauren Oakley, Giovanni Pernice, Johannes Radebe, Michelle Tsiakkas, Kai Widdrington and Nancy Xu were also pictured.

Amy Dowden currently can’t compete in the group numbers as she undergoes chemotherapy for breast cancer.

Her Strictly family paid a heartfelt tribute to Amy during the National Television Awards on Tuesday amid her breast cancer battle.

The professional dancer, 33, is unable to participate as a dancer in the new series after she began her chemotherapy treatment in August after she was diagnosed with breast cancer earlier this year.

However, she did attend the NTAs at London’s 02 alongside her fellow pro dancers and joined them on stage when the show won the Talent Show award.

Former contestant and new It Takes Two host Fleur East gave Amy a special shoutout during the acceptance speech saying: ‘Of course the Strictly professional dancers.

‘It’s extra special because we are joined by the fabulous Amy Dowden on stage who looks absolutely incredible.’


Angela Rippon

Age: 78 

Profession: Journalist 

Angela says: ‘Having been a fan of Strictly since day one, and as a former presenter of Come Dancing, this will be quite an adventure for me. A scary one, considering I’m about to be 79. But I’m looking forward to the challenge, and perhaps being able to learn to dance the Argentine Tango.’

Amanda Abbington

Age: 49

Profession: Actress

Amanda says: ‘I’m thrilled to have been asked to do Strictly. I’m actually really shy and self-conscious so this will be a great opportunity for me to overcome those things.’

Layton Williams

Age: 28

Profession: Actor

Layton says: ‘Absolutely buzzing to confirm that I will be taking part in THE most iconic dance competition in the UK! It’s time to bring it to the Ballroom. So excited to learn new skills from the best. Bring on the sequins… ALL the sequins!’

 Krishnan Guru-Murthy

Age: 53

Profession: Journalist

Krishnan says: ‘I’m surprised, delighted and slightly confused to find myself taking part in Strictly on the basis of ‘You only live once!’ I can’t wait to start learning to dance, but I am slightly worried about my general decrepitude.’

Eddie Kadi

Age: 40

Profession: Comedian and radio presenter

Eddie says: ‘WOW. Anyone who knows me, understands that music and dance is so important and central to who I am. I’m so unbelievably proud and honoured that Strictly and the BBC have asked me to join the 2023 Team. I promise you, I’m going to give it everything I’ve got. This is going to be a VIBE.

Angela Scanlon

Age: 39

Profession: TV presenter

Angela says: ‘I’m not particularly fit, I’ve no idea how my pelvic floor is going to react to this dancing. I’ve never done any dances apart from drunken jiving at a wedding!’ 

Zara McDermott 

Age: 26

Profession: Documentary maker and former Love Island star

Zara says: ‘I am so excited to be joining the world of Strictly! I grew up watching it every year with my nan and she was the biggest Strictly fan. We would dance around the house and I have such fond memories of that time in my life.’

Adam Thomas 

Age: 34 

Profession: Actor and presenter

Adam says: ‘I can’t dance to save my life but I’m buzzing to learn and have a good laugh with my pro. Get me on that dance floor…I can’t wait!’

Nikita Kanda 

Age: 27

 Profession: Radio and TV presenter

Nikita says: ‘I can’t believe I’m going to be on Strictly. This is a dream come true. I’m still pinching myself. I don’t think it will properly sink in until I step onto the dancefloor. I can’t wait to get glammed up and get out there. Throw the glitter on me!’

Ellie Leach 

Age: 22

Profession:  Coronation Street star

Ellie says: ‘It still doesn’t feel real that I’m going to be doing Strictly!! It’s always been a dream of mine so I guess dreams really do come true!!!!’

Jody Cundy 

Age: 44

Profession:  Paralympic champion 

Jody says: ‘I’m looking forward to the challenge and pushing myself way out of my comfort zone, especially as I’m always last onto the dance floor. Can’t wait to get stuck in, bring on the glitter and sequins.’

Bobby Brazier 

Age: 20

Profession:  EastEnders star and model 

Bobby says: ‘I’m so excited to be part of the Strictly line up, I can’t wait to start training like a professional dancer and adding a few moves to my locker. I’m looking forward to performing in-front of everyone.’

Nigel Harman 

Age: 49 

Profession:  Actor

Nigel says: ‘I’m amazed, excited, and terrified to be doing Strictly. As an armchair fan of the show I have watched in awe as people have twirled and gyrated across the screen. And now it’s my turn…..gulp!’

Annabel Croft 

Age: 57 

Profession:  Broadcaster and ex tennis player

Annabel says: ‘I have always loved watching Strictly and can’t quite believe I’m going to be part of this magical show – swapping tennis balls for glitter balls and looking forward to finding some joyfulness in the process.’

Les Dennis 

Age: 69

Profession: Actor and game show host

Les says:  ‘I’m thrilled to be doing this iconic wonderful show as I approach my 70th birthday! In my career I’ve always gone for challenges outside my comfort zone and this is the ultimate one! Can’t wait.’


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