Strictly ‘not a hotbed of lust' despite latest scandal, says Arlene Phillips

Former members of the show's team have spoken about the incident involving Seann Walsh and Katya Jones.

Former judge Arlene Phillips has said Strictly Come Dancing is “not a hotbed of lust” despite dancers falling for each other.

The choreographer said the intensity of performing on the show throws celebrities and professionals together physically and emotionally.

She added that dance partners “fall in love” while working together under pressure, but that Strictly is not exceptional.

“I think, in life, it’s happening all the time,” she said. “I don’t think it’s a hotbed of lust.

“I think the tension of Saturday night throws people together, physically, in every way, emotionally, sensually, dramatically.

Strictly Come Dancing
Strictly Come Dancing scored its highest ratings of the series so far as more than 10m viewers tuned in to watch Katya Jones and Seann Walsh perform their ‘Dance of Shame’ (Guy Levy/BBC/PA)

“There is a great physicality, and I think people do fall in love with their partners.”

Speaking on Good Morning Britain, Phillips said romance on Strictly is not contrived for ratings, but those involved in any scandal should be aware that their actions will make headlines.

Former professional on the show Robin Windsor told BBC Breakfast that closeness with dance partners is inevitable, but the scandal involving comedian Seann Walsh and his professional partner Katya Jones is over.

He said: “Up to 12 hours a day you are working in very close proximity. You feel a very special connection with them. You are making them feel euphoric. It can upset the apple cart a bit.

“It’s done and buried now, and I think everyone should just move on.”

The dancer added that getting special help for the Charleston was not unusual, and that a choreographer was always offered for the difficult dance.

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