As the all-new Strictly Come Dancing line-up took to the dance floor for their first routines in week one, JJ Chalmers caught fans’ attention with the poignant story behind his Waltz.
Revealing how, in a bid to impress his now-wife, he had started learning the dance from a fellow Marine whilst serving in Afghanistan, JJ touched viewers when they heard how, shortly afterwards, he was injured in an explosion.
JJ danced the Waltz to What A Wonderful World by Louis Armstrong, with his professional dance partner Amy Dowden.
The Strictly Come Dancing star is competing alongside former boxing champ Nicola Adams, comedian Bill Bailey, The Wanted’s Max George, Good Morning Britain’s Ranvir Singh and others.
Here’s everything you need to know about JJ Chalmers.
Who is JJ Chalmers?
Job: Television presenter and former Royal Marine and Invictus Games medallist
Partnered with: Amy Dowden
The television presenter joins Strictly with an incredible back story. His career as a Royal Marine Commando was cut short after he suffered life-changing injuries following an IED explosion in Afghanistan.
After years of rehabilitation, however, JJ went on to compete in the 2014 Invictus Games where he captained the Trike Cycling team and took home three medals.
As a spokesperson for this inaugural Invictus Games JJ got an insight into TV and embarked on a career in broadcasting.
His breakthrough role came in 2016 as a Studio Presenter role for the Rio Paralympics.
Since 2017, he’s anchored BBC One’s coverage of the Invictus Games.
Other presenting highlights for BBC Sport include The Commonwealth Games and The London Marathon.
As part of the BBC’s Ceremonial team, JJ commentates on The Lord Mayor’s Show and was involved in the D-Day Memorial programming.
And fans will probably recognise him from his other presenting gigs, including The One Show, BBC Breakfast, Getaways, The People Remember and Radio 5 Live’s From Helmand and Back.
What has JJ said about Strictly?
JJ’s Strictly signing was announced on ITV’s Lorraine.
Speaking about the news, he said: “My whole life is defined by facing challenges. Whether it’s becoming a Royal Marine Commando, recovering from my injuries sustained in Afghanistan to competing in The Invictus Games.”
He added: “Now as a TV Presenter I’m lucky enough to witness some of the greatest sporting contests in the world. Strictly is a whole different ball game in respect to the challenges I will face but I’m up for an adventure and at least my mum will know where I am!”
We look forward to seeing you on Strictly, JJ!
Strictly Come Dancing live shows is on BBC One on October 24th at 7:25pm. If you’re looking for something to watch tonight, check out our TV Guide.