Scottish schoolgirl Ellie Fergusson has been crowned the first ever Greatest Dancer, following the climax to the inaugural series of the BBC1 talent show – but she won’t be the last, with the news that the Simon Cowell-masterminded format will return next year for a second run.
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After wowing the voting public with two lyrical, emotional and athletic contemporary dance routines – one alongside her dance captain Oti Mabuse – Ellie claimed the title ahead of runners-up kids’ Latin troupe KLA and teenage duo Harry and Eleiyah, along with a £50,000 cash prize and the opportunity to perform on the show’s much bigger sister Strictly Come Dancing in the autumn.
“It’s been the most amazing experience of my life,” the 14-year-old said, “and I couldn’t have done it without everyone’s support, so thank you… I can’t believe it.”
“It’s been all her,” said Ellie’s mentor Oti, “it has nothing to do with me, she just came out here every single week and did her best, and Ellie, you are so deserving!”
But Ellie won’t be the only one celebrating. Simon Cowell will no doubt have been pleased to hear that his first show for the BBC will get a second run, with co-host Jordan Banjo revealing as the credits rolled: “Exciting news – we’ll be back next year for another series”.
The Greatest Dance had dropped well over a million viewers between it’s opening episode and the live stages, and had been consistently beaten in the 8pm Saturday slot by ITV rival The Voice, but it rallied for the final, just nudging ahead of The Voice with an average of 4.1 million viewers and an audience share of 23.4%.