The announcement of Strictly Come Dancing‘s first ever same-sex couple has attracted huge media attention, but the stars themselves are confident that fans won’t see them differently.
Former Olympic boxer Nicola Adams has been partnered up with Strictly professional dancer Katya Jones, who won the 15th series with actor Joe McFadden.
The competition fully gets underway this Saturday, when the latest batch of contestants will perform their first ever scored dances for the judging panel.
Ahead of the big night, Jones told Radio Times: “People won’t even see the difference because it’s going to be amazing. They’re not even going to question it.
“In the ballroom world, there are same-sex partnerships and same-sex competitions,” she continued. “So it’s a really normal thing, you know? I’ve always taught as a lead and a follower, so this doesn’t feel like anything extra.
“I’m just really excited to get someone whose work ethic is out of this world — she’s so used to training hard. For me, that’s all I look for in a partner. We’re two strong-minded women and we’re going to be a powerhouse together.
“And, you know, dancing is dancing.”
Last year’s Strictly laid the groundwork for this leap forward, when it showed a same-sex dance between Strictly pros Johannes Radebe and Graziano di Prima, which prompted 189 complaints.
However, this is the first time that a same-sex couple will be competing in the competition among a Strictly Come Dancing lineup that also includes comedian Bill Bailey, actress Caroline Quentin, and BBC Radio 1 DJ Clara Amfo.
Strictly Come Dancing continues on BBC One this Saturday at 7:25pm. While you’re waiting, visit our TV Guide to see what’s on tonight, or check out our guide to new TV shows 2020 to find out what’s airing this autumn and beyond.