Belfast Telegraph

Anneka Rice: I was a tomboy before Strictly

The broadcaster was eliminated from the show at the weekend.

Kevin Clifton and Anneka Rice (Guy Levy/BBC)
Kevin Clifton and Anneka Rice (Guy Levy/BBC)

By Julia Hunt, PA Entertainment Correspondent

Anneka Rice has said Strictly Come Dancing transformed her from a tomboy to someone who embraces dress shopping.

The TV star, 61, made no secret of the fact she was new to sequins and sparkles when she joined the BBC competition, but said she had been out hunting for frocks after getting the boot at the weekend.

Speaking on spin-off It Takes Two, she said the entire Strictly journey had “transformed” her.

Rice told host Rylan Clark-Neal: “I turned up as a tomboy and now I’ve just been out shopping with my son and I went and I bought three dresses.”

The star was eliminated from the BBC show on Sunday after she and her professional partner Kevin Clifton lost to David James and Nadiya Bychkova in a dance-off.

She admitted it was “quite tough” being out of the competition.

“I didn’t realise,” she said. “We’ve been on such a roller-coaster.

“It feels like I ran away to the circus on my gap year and I’ve just come back to a pile of ironing.”

Discussing how Rice had progressed, Clifton joked: “Week one of Strictly we were working on just clapping in time to the music.

“A few minutes ago we were stood over there and the Strictly theme tune was playing at the top of the show and I turned around and Anneka Rice was clapping in time and I thought, ‘Yes, we have made improvement here!’”

Rice chimed in: “It’s so weird in that I’m quite a graceful athlete in that I play tennis and I can swim with great style but I have this major disconnect with dancing.”

Despite being out so early in the series, Rice said she had loved being a part of the programme.

“The whole experience has brought me such joy,” she said.

Strictly Come dancing continues on BBC One.

PA

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