Blackpool is probably the most-anticipated night in the Strictly calendar (bar the final) – and the 2023 show is set to be its most jaw-dropping yet!
Every year, the glitzy BBC One show takes itself to the iconic Blackpool Tower Ballroom. A unique spring dance floor, a much wider space and a larger live audience are all in store for the latest lot of celebs showing off their best moves.
Strictly 2023 Blackpool special
It’s fair to say there’s been a slew of brilliant performances over the years at the seaside town. And some have even gone on to achieve a perfect 40 score from the judges. And the new Strictly 2023 series will most likely be no different, should Craig Revel Horwood play ball…
So how many couples have bagged a perfect 40 at Blackpool? And who was the first-ever couple to achieve this feat?
Ashley Roberts and Pasha Kovalev on Strictly
Pussycat Doll Ashley Roberts was partnered up with Pasha Kovalev on series 16. And it’s fair to say the pair set the dance floor on fire.
Especially at Blackpool, where the pair performed a jive. Their routine went down a treat with the judges, with Shirley Ballas saying: “The whole thing was absolutely on form.”
While Bruno Tonioli gushed: “There are some performances that become part of Strictly history, you did just that.”
Their performance also bagged a score of 10 from each judge – giving them the perfect 40. Ashley and Pasha Kovalev went on to become runners-up on the show.
Danny Mac and Oti Mabuse
In series 14, show favourite Oti Mabuse teamed up with actor Danny Mac – and their purely brilliant Charleston at Blackpool left jaws on the floor.
Danny wowed the judges with a routine so fast it was hard to keep up. The pair also pulled off a show-stopping one-handed cartwheel.
The dancing duo not only bagged a standing ovation in the Blackpool ballroom, but each judge scored them a 10 too!
Jason Donovan and Kirstina Rihanoff on Strictly
Heart-throb Jason Donovan left plenty of fans swooning when he appeared on the show in 2011. Partnered up with Kristina Rihanoff, the pair got plenty of people talking.
The final of the series took place in Blackpool – where Jason and Kristina performed a show dance. The dance went on to score a perfect 40 from the judges.
Strictly 2023: Harry Judd and Aliona Vilani
In the same year of Jason Donovan’s stint, McFly star Harry Judd also appeared on the glitzy show. The rocker teamed up with dance pro Aliona.
Like Jason, Harry also bagged the perfect 40 from the judges. He and Aliona wowed with an Argentine tango. Harry ended up going on to win the show.
Ali Bastian and Brian Fortuna on Strictly
Actress Ali Bastian took part in the 2009 series of Strictly where she and professional partner Brian Fortuna made it to semi-final.
I’m very disappointed. I could not find a single thing wrong with it.
At Blackpool, the pair took to the dance floor to perform a beautiful and visionary Viennese waltz. Their routine was a hit with the judges, who dished out 10s.
Craig Revel Horwood told them: “I’m very disappointed. I could not find a single thing wrong with it.”
Jill Halfpenny and Darren Bennett
Way back in 2004, Jill Halfpenny partner Darren Bennett made history on Strictly.
At the epic final in Blackpool, the pair performed an iconic jive – which produced the first-ever 40 in Strictly history at the time.
Craig told them: “The amount of detail in your work is extraordinary.” While the late Len Goodman gushed: “I’m overwhelmed, that was the best dance of the whole series.”
Strictly 2023: Fleur East and Vito Coppola
X Factor star Fleur East made waves on the glitzy show last year. For the competition, she was partnered up with Vito Coppola.
When the show returned to the seaside for its Blackpool special, Fleur and Vito made plenty of jaws drop. The couple performed a routine to one of Fleur’s favourite bands from her childhood – Destiny’s Child.
Flapping their 10 paddles, the judges gushed over Fleur and Vito’s dance. Shirley described it as an “iconic routine that will go down in history”. While Craig simply called it “fab-u-lous”.
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