Jay and Aliona promise “cheeky” Strictly Halloween dance

“Naughty” choreography - and the duo's first lifts - are on the cards as Jay and Aliona take on a Little Red Riding Hood theme this Saturday night

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Singer Jay McGuiness and his Strictly Come Dancing pro partner Aliona Vilani have promised a “cheeky” routine for this weekend’s Halloween-themed show.

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“It’s quite a naughty dance,” Aliona told RadioTimes.com of their American Smooth to ‘Lil Red Riding Hood’ by Sam the Sham and The Pharaoh. “People think ‘Oh, fairy tale…’ but it’s really cheeky choreography. When I listen to the song, there is no other way to go about it. It had to be quite naughty.”

Jay will play the role of the “naughty wolf” while Aliona admitted she’s “quite a naughty Little Red Riding Hood”.

“At one point Aliona’s going to stroke my ears,” Jay laughed, admitting backstage on Friday that he was excited to get into character.

“The costume can really make it. The Jive and Paso, getting into those costumes felt like, now I’m a ‘Paso dude’ or ‘now we’re in Pulp Fiction’… It’s really fun, I really like being in costume.”

In fact, while Jay was the first of this year’s celebrity contestants to land a score of ten from the judges for that Pulp Fiction-themed Jive, he says it’s this weekend’s dance that he’s enjoyed the most. 

“This is my favourite week. I love it. It’s spooky and cool… if I can make it cool. Even though I’m more tired than I’ve been I just can’t wait to get out there.”

It might have a little something to do with the fact that this is their first routine with lifts, which Aliona joked Jay has been keen to do since day one. 

“We have lifts for the first time. He was so excited – from day one he asked ‘When are we going to do lifts?’ I said ‘not anytime soon!’ So six weeks in, first time, it’s so cool. I wanted Jay to learn to dance first properly. Then if still in go into theatrical stuff.”

And Aliona says she feels perfectly safe with her partner carrying her through the air. 

“He’s so strong. Crazy strong, I feel really safe. That’s a good plus for me.” Although he did forget to put her down during one rehearsal. 

“There was a moment I was in a lift, as he moved me around I realised I was still in the air just hanging there,” Aliona explained. “I said ‘Jay put me down’ and he was looking forward like ‘Oh, I’m sorry’ without realising I’m hanging in his arms, thinking I’m on the ground.” 

As for those judges’ scores, Jay’s got his own benchmark for this week.

“As long as we do it as well as the last rehearsal we did I’m happy, even if we don’t get high scores.”

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Strictly Come Dancing continues Saturday at 6:35pm on BBC1