Belfast Telegraph

5-6-7-skate! Steps star becomes latest to join Dancing On Ice line-up

Ian ‘H’ Watkins joins the likes of Michael Barrymore and Maura Higgins on the line-up.

5-6-7-skate! Steps star becomes latest to join Dancing On Ice line-up (Ian West/PA)
5-6-7-skate! Steps star becomes latest to join Dancing On Ice line-up (Ian West/PA)

By Lucy Mapstone, PA Deputy Entertainment Editor

Steps star Ian “H” Watkins will be hoping his years of performing dance routines will transfer to the rink as he has joined Dancing On Ice.

The pop singer is the fifth star to be confirmed for the ice skating series, and will join the likes of TV presenter Michael Barrymore and Love Island star Maura Higgins when it returns to screens next year.

Watkins told ITV’s Good Morning Britain that it feels like he’s “given birth to something” as he was revealed as the latest competitor.

He said: “What am I doing? I have frantically been YouTubing (previous contestants) James Jordan and Ray Quinn.

“I have kids now so it’s a skill I can learn and take my kids to the ice.

“It’s scary and exciting and now there’s no turning back.”

He joked that the show is “brutal” and that he has insurance, adding: “I know I’m going to be put through my paces and that’s the name of the game.”

Watkins rose to fame as one-fifth of pop group Steps in the 1990s along with Faye Tozer, Claire Richards, Lee Latchford-Evans and Lisa Scott-Lee.

The group became known for their catchy pop-dance tracks combined with the easy-to-imitate routines, with their biggest hits including Heartbeat, Tragedy, Deeper Shade Of Blue and Stomp.

Following a long hiatus, the group reunited in 2017 for a tour and the release of a new album, Tears On The Dancefloor, which was a success, peaking at number two in the charts.

Coronation Street star Lisa George became the sixth celebrity to join the line-up, appearing live on ITV’s Lorraine to talk about her new challenge.

George, who plays Beth Tinker in the soap, said: “I haven’t been on the ice for about 40 years. Yesterday was my first session on the ice.

“It was good, I really enjoyed it, I didn’t fall. I was a bit scared, I was quite nervous. I can’t believe I’m 50 next year and I just thought, ‘If I don’t do this now I’m never going to have the chance to do it again’.”

George has appeared in Corrie since 2011, and her other acting credits include the TV adaptation of Jacqueline Wilson’s novel The Illustrated Mum, Emmerdale and Holby City.

Barrymore and Higgins were the first contestants to be confirmed for Dancing On Ice earlier this week, followed by retired footballer Kevin Kilbane and newsreader Lucrezia Millarini.

A total of 12 celebrities are taking part in the competition, with the others being revealed in the coming days.

Earlier this month, it was revealed that John Barrowman, who competed on the ice-skating show in 2006, will replace Jason Gardiner on the judging panel.

He will join judges Jayne Torvill, Christopher Dean and Ashley Banjo.

The series will be presented by regular hosts Phillip Schofield and Holly Willoughby.



From Belfast Telegraph