Larry Lamb: Strictly is like entering as stranger into world you already know
Larry Lamb has said competing on the Strictly Come Dancing Christmas Special is “like entering as a stranger into a world you already know”.
The 75-year-old actor, who played Mick Shipman in hit sitcom Gavin And Stacey, will be partnered with professional dancer Nadiya Bychkova as six celebrities battle it out in a festive special of the show.
When asked how he is feeling, he said: “Somebody told me that the Strictly Come Dancing Christmas Special always blows the TV figures out of the water and I said ‘yes, but it didn’t blow Gavin And Stacey Christmas Special out did it?’ and they said ‘no, you’re right it didn’t blow it out at all’.”
Lamb also starred in EastEnders, dramatically departing Walford on Christmas Day 2009 when his character Archie Mitchell was murdered by a mystery assassin who bashed him over the head with a bust of Queen Victoria.
He added: “(Strictly’s) like you when you first join EastEnders and you find yourself in The Queen Vic, you realise that you’re kind of somewhere you’ve had a taste of for many years and then all of a sudden it’s reality, and you have to take it all in and think ‘wow!’ it’s like entering as a stranger into a world you already know.”
Lamb also said he is “really lucky” to have been partnered with Bychkova as he cannot dance at all.
He added: “I’m not even an amateur dancer, so getting judged by top-notch professional dancers is ridiculous.
“If I get it right I’ll be over the moon and I’ll just be so thrilled I am able to do it.”
Bychkova said: “It’s a pleasure to see everything coming together and I could see the smile on his face.”
Lamb also presents Channel 5 docuseries Britain By Bike alongside his son George and regularly appears on The One Show with history and heritage segments.
This year’s Strictly festive special will see CBeebies presenter George Webster dancing with professional Amy Dowden, and Girls Aloud’s Nicola Roberts partnered with Giovanni Pernice.
Soap actress Alexandra Mardell will dance with Kai Widdrington, DJ Rickie Haywood-Williams with Luba Mushtuk and podcaster Rosie Ramsey will be partnered with Neil Jones.
Last year saw singer Anne-Marie and professional dancer Graziano Di Prima crowned the winner of the 2021 Strictly Come Dancing Christmas Special.
The Strictly 2022 series finished on Saturday when Hamza Yassin and his partner Jowita Przystal lifted the glitterball trophy after a public vote.
– The Strictly Come Dancing Christmas Special will air on BBC One and BBC iPlayer on Christmas Day.