Vincent Simone Exclusive - Strictly Come Dancing

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Our resident glitterball gossip Vincent Simone shares his thoughts on Strictly Come Dancing as the much-loved television programme moves inches ever closer to the final.  

So, Vincent, we have our final three couples for the semi-final. Do you think the judges made the right choice in sending Bobby through to the final at the expense of Annabel? 

To be honest, when I watched the Saturday show, I thought that Bobby’s Quickstep was amazing. I couldn’t believe how fast that little boy could move around the floor! Anton was impressed too. In the dance-off, his performance wasn’t as good (as on the Saturday show).  

Annabel did a great dance, but there were a couple of wobbles. She was struggling with the speed of her dance and the speed of the rotations, which can be explained by a lack of training because she doesn’t have a dace background. If I was Johannes, I think I would have been a bit gentler with Annabel.  

I think the decision to send Annabel home was the right direction. It was a very close decision, but the right one.  

How do you think Annabel performed on the show?  

Overall, I think she did really well. She has a classical, classy look that I really like. She was beautiful to watch and the partnership between herself and Johannes was brilliant. Every time she danced, it was a really endearing, especially when you know what she has been through this year.  

Johannes has been an amazing tutor. Annabel did really well, but, unfortunately, when you’re competing at this stage of the competition the ability increases. Let’s not forget that you could say Annabel was a bit lucky to get through to the semi-final after Nigel got injured in the quarter-finals. Well done to Annabel for coming this far.  

What have been your highlights from the show so far? Has one performance really stood out for you?  

For me, my highlight of this series has been watching Vito dance with Ellie. I love watching that couple dance. Being a professional dancer on Strictly Come Dancing can sometimes be a little bit tricky. There is a delicate balancing act between going all out and giving your partner the platform to shine. When your dancing with someone that isn’t professional, then you have to be very patient. You must nurture the other through. I’ve seen some professionals on the show who couldn’t care less about their partners dance if they did well.  

Vito is completely different. He cares so much about his celebrity partner. He has managed to find the perfect balance between performing well every week while also bringing out the best of his partner Ellie. They are the only couple who have done that throughout the competition this season every single week. You must applaud them for it. Vito has taught Ellie so much. I can actually see how the hard-work that they are putting in away from the dancefloor has improved her technical ability. For me, they are my favourite couple this year because they represent what the show is all about.  

Nikita and Layton are the best dancers, they should win. I hope they do!  

I’ve been wrestling with this for a few weeks now, but I actually think that it is unfair that Strictly has put an amazing dancer in the competition like Layton because they never get to win.  

It’s unfair (if Layton doesn’t win). They could sign-up a talented dancer next year, something with a dancing background, who would have watched Layton and could think ‘what’s the point in taking part? I’m never going to win’.  

It’s annoying that, historically, the best dancer doesn’t win the show. Throughout the competition I’ve said that Ellie and Vito will win but that Layton is the best dancer, but now I really want him to win. It’s not Layton’s fault that he Strictly wanted him on the show.

It would have taken them 20 seconds to tell that Layton was going to be incredible on the show.  

I think it’s really sad because he deserves to win. Layton should walk the show. His performances have been so brilliant on the show. He’s the best dancer and they are the best couple. I think it’s a bit unfair (that they may not win).  

I would say that Ellie and Vito are the more traditional winners of Strictly. You look at her journey and progression week-in, week-out, but Layton has been so amazing in the competition. Why can’t he win? Why does he have to be penalised for being a professional dancer. It’s not fair on the boy. He’s the best dancer; he works really hard, and every week produces something spectacular. Nikita and Layton’s choreography is always wonderful. The choreography each week is fearless. They put so much effort into their routines – either dancer could have badly injured themselves on Saturday if the routine wasn’t perfect. After his performance on Saturday, I would love him to win. I think it’s about time the best dancer won and Layton is the best dancer. It’s a dance show at the end of the day so the best dancer should win.  

On Saturday’s show, the stand-out performance was Layton and Nikita’s Charleston. What did you make of the performance?  

To be honest, I’ve given Layton a few standing ovations throughout the series. I loved the Paso Doble they did and the couples choice dance from last week. Every Saturday I turn on the show and look forward to seeing him dancing. I love watching him. He blows you every week.  

The Charleston was incredible. We knew it would be good, but I don’t think we were expecting it to be that good. To deliver the perfect Charleston, you must be light on your feet; you have to be agile, and you have to tell the story. I knew they were going to give a perfect routine performing this dance. They’ve been amazing every single week. The only dance that I didn’t think was as good as everything else was the Rumba. I don’t understand why there wasn’t enough hip action in that – he was stiff.  

The atmosphere that these guys create every time they walk onto the dancefloor is so freaking powerful. The presence they have – it’s just wow! Even before they start moving, you know you are about to watch something spectacular. I really hope that the British public votes for Layton because he is the best dancer that we’ve ever had on Strictly.  

What advice would you give the couples before the final?  

Keep doing what you’re doing. Every single one of them, they’ve been amazing at what they’ve done. The professionals Dianne, Nikita and Vito have been absolutely amazing. I would give them all a standing ovation. 

Vincent will be reacting to remaining rounds of Strictly each Monday on the ICE36 blog.  

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V: 3.15.1 All rights reserved. January 2020