Belfast Telegraph

Strictly’s new Shirley Ballas vows ‘I won’t be giving ones and twos’

The star vowed to give an honest and balanced opinion when judging the new contestants.

Incoming Strictly Come Dancing judge Shirley Ballas has promised not to hand out rock-bottom scores when she takes over as head judge on the show.

The said her job was not to “destroy souls” but she also refused to hand out “too much pink ice cream”.

Ballas will replace former BBC show veteran Len Goodman, who stepped down from the prestigious position at the end of last year’s show, when it returns two screens in just two weeks’ time.

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Commenting on joining returning panellists, she praised “little angel” Darcey Bussell, but decried “mad” Craig Revel Horwood’s fierce judging techniques, which have seen him give low scores in the past.

Ballas, 56, said: ” “I’m not there for destroying souls — that’s not who I am, I certainly won’t be giving a one or a two.

“But I’m going to take it from an honest point of view of what I see.

“You don’t want too much pink ice cream — that will make you sick.”

Ballas dominated the professional Latin American dancing scene through the 1980s and 1990s.

Remembering how she secured the coveted TV job, the former professional dancer said it was her son Mark who pushed her to apply, even though she had moved to the US.

Thrilled to receive the news, she said: “When the lady told me, I did fall to my knees because it’s coming home for me.

“The first person I Facetimed was my son. He said, ‘You see, dreams come true’.”

She even added: “They could have got off with paying me nothing. I would have been fine with that.”

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