Strictly’s Kym Marsh had dance training from ex judge Arlene Phillips AND starred in her hit West End show | The Sun

KYM Marsh HAS had professional dance experience, despite insisting earlier this week she’s got “all the posture and grace of a Quaver.”

The Strictly contender slammed claims that she had an unfair advantage in the competition, insisting that when she was in pop band Hear’Say she was only “faffing about” on stage.

The Sun can reveal that two years after quitting the band, Kym, 46, went on to star in the dance musical Saturday Night Fever in London’s West End.

In the role of Annette, she was seen strutting her stuff on stage every night after receiving dance training from top choreographer and former Strictly Come Dancing judge Arlene Phillips.

Strictly judge Craig Revel Horwood added fuel to the row over dance experience earlier this week after claiming that Kym had danced previously.

Craig, 57, tipped her to do well in this year’s Strictly because she already knows her way round a dance floor.


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In an interview with Best magazine, he gave his opinions on this year’s celebrity contestants, saying: “Kym Marsh has danced before and I think she’ll fit in well."

Actress and singer Kym hit back earlier this week insisting: “We’re talking 20 years ago faffing about on stage in Hear’Say.

“It’s a whole different thing, and even if that did count as experience in dance, this is ballroom.”

But on stage in Saturday Night Fever, Kym was seen pulling off a range of impressive dance moves to the hit soundtrack.

The 46-year-old old Strictly contender played the role of Annette, the dance partner and girlfriend of Tony Manero – the part made famous by John Travolta in the iconic ‘70s movie.

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The show, directed and choreographed by Arlene Phillips, ran at London’s Apollo Theatre from 2004 to 2006.

In comparison, other Strictly contenders this year, such as Loose Women’s Kaye Adams, 59, and actor Will Mellor, 46, have no professional history on the dance floor and no dance experience.

Kym, who starred as Coronation Street’s Michelle Connor from 2006 to 2019, also admitted last month that she began dance lessons at the age of four.

She told Cheshire Life magazine: “I loved performing from a really young age. I was at dance school from the age of four but my parents didn’t realise I could sing until I was ten years old.

Kym also confessed that producers of the reality television series Popstars had specifically asked that auditionees had to be able to “sing and dance.”


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Kym said: “My mum put me forward for Popstars. She had been watching the local news programme where they were asking for people to apply.

"All we knew was they were looking for people from the ages of 18-24 who could sing and dance.”

Countryfile star Helen Skelton, 39, is currently the bookies’ favourite to win this year’s Strictly at odds of 3/1, closely followed by singer Fleur East, 34, at 7/2 and Matt Goss, 53, at 6/1. Kym is listed at 14/1.

Former England footballer Tony Adams, 55, is at 40/1 and Loose Women host Kaye Adams – this year’s oldest contestant – is 50/1.

The other celebrities include singer Mollie Rainford, 21, former swimmer Ellie Simmonds, 27, EastEnders actor James Bye, 38, radio presenter Richie Anderson, 34, comedian Jayde Adams, 37, DJ Tyler West, 26, comedian Ellie Taylor, 38 and wildlife presenter Hamza Yassin, 32. 

Strictly Come Dancing was due to start on Saturday 17th September but the programme has been postponed due to the death of the Queen.

The pre-recorded launch show, which sees this year’s celebrities paired with their professional partners for the first time, will now air on Friday 23rd September, with the first live show following on Saturday 24th September, the BBC said.

This series also sees the introduction of four new professionals, European cup winner Vito Coppola, Chinese National Champion Carlos Gu, former Under 21 British National Champion Lauren Oakley and Latin dance champion Michelle Tsiakkas. 

The series will be the first in three years to be broadcast without Covid measures, which forced bosses to introduce restrictions including 'bubbles' for training and limited audience numbers. 

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Series 20 will also include a return to the Blackpool Tower ballroom after a two-year break due to the coronavirus pandemic. 

The upcoming series will see its stars celebrate 100 years of the BBC with a special themed week.

To mark the centenary, the Strictly couples will either dance to a theme tune from an iconic BBC programme or in tribute to one of the BBC’s most-loved services.

Craig Revel Horwood, Shirley Ballas, Motsi Mabuse and Anton Du Beke will return to the judging panel, after Bruno Tonioli confirmed in July he had permanently left the show.

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