Strictly 2020 Week Eight: the semi-final

Five semi-finalists performed two dances each to make it into the final. Jamie and Karen performed a Salsa and a Quickstep, Ranvir and Giovanni a Waltz and a Jive, Bill and Oti a Charleston and a Tango, Maisie and Gorka a Couple’s Choice Street Dance and a Viennese Waltz and Harvey and Janette a Rumba and a Charleston.

Each couple would’ve deserved to be in the final. They had all worked hard and applied themselves as best they could. I have loved seeing how they learn, how they use their skills to meet this alien challenge and how they rise to the occasion on the night. It fascinates me every year.

My Strictly Come Dancing semi-final highlights

Maisie and Gorka‘s selection of dances couldn’t have been more different in terms of style, dynamic, musicality and movement quality. How Maisie managed to deliver two completely different, but equally stunning performances amazes me!

Ranvir and Giovanni‘s Waltz was blissfully beautiful. Their Jive did fall a bit short of the high expectations I now have of them, but I think that with a bit more time Ranvir would’ve accomplished some of the essential skills to succeed at the Jive. She already managed a lot of it, but with her weight in the right place for instance, she could’ve improved the performance even more. It was tough to do such very different performances.

Bill and Oti! They’re my absolute favourites this year. Why? Bill’s technical delivery isn’t 100% perfect. But I have never much cared for this, except in its importance for artistic interpretation. Since Bill generates artistry without perfect technique, I don’t miss technique. He inspires me and even informs how I approach my own rehearsals and creations. As a professional dancer, I feel nourished and indulged by his performances.

In preparation for the final, enjoy these Unseen moments from the training room on the BBC Strictly Come Dancing website. It’s a super funny short video and testament to how tough it is.

The final of Strictly Come Dancing 2020 is on Saturday, 19th December. It starts at 6pm on BBC One.

If you want to keeeep dancing once Strictly 2020 is over, start planning your 2021 parties for when it’s safe again and make sure you incorporate lots of dance.

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