Long-time Strictly Come Dancing favourite Janette Manrara is swapping dance shoes for cue cards following the announcement that she’s retiring as one of the Strictly Come Dancing professionals and replacing Zoe Ball as co-presenter on spin-off show It Takes Two.
The former Strictly pro announced the news on The One Show, revealing that she had always loved appearing on It Takes Two, and even secretly coveted the presenting gig.
“One of my favourite parts of doing Strictly has always been to sit down on that couch and just chat away, it’s the most fun,” she told The One Show host Alex Jones. “I remember meeting Zoe, gosh that was eight years ago now, when I did the first It Takes Two sit-down.
“[I was] thinking, ‘This is the coolest job ever. You get to sit down, talk about dancing, make people feel good and celebrate their successes on the show.’ I did say, ‘One day I would love to do that,’ and it’s here – here we are!”
However, she added that the decision to hang up her dancing shoes proved difficult for her. “That’s been the hardest part of accepting this honour,” she said, referring to the fact she had to choose between the dancing and presenting roles.
“It’s the realisation that I will not be on that legendary Strictly dance floor any more. But I feel that this is most beautiful and natural progression,” she added.
Read on for everything you need to know about the former Strictly Come Dancing professional and the future co-host of Strictly: It Takes Two.
Is Janette Manrara hosting Strictly: It Takes Two?
Janette Manrara will take over a co-presenter for Strictly It Takes Two alongside Rylan Clark-Neal. She will not be one of the Strictly professional line-up for 2021.
The spin-off series airs weeknights, with interviews, updates on performances, and speculation and tips from the Strictly judging panel before the main show is broadcast on Saturday night and the Sunday results show.
Janette Manrara’s Strictly Come Dancing career
Janette Manrara last teamed up with celebrity HRVY for last year’s Strictly competition, finishing as a runner-up, and she has previously been paired with the likes of Will Bayley and TV doctor Ranj Singh.
The professional dancer joined Strictly back in 2013, and before that she reached the top eight in the US version of So You Think You Can Dance?, at the age of 24.
Who is Janette Manrara’s husband Aljaz Skorjanec?
Janette Manrara is married to fellow professional dancer Aljaz Skorjanec, and the Strictly pro has already congratulated his wife on her new venture.
“Beyond Happy for you!!! Can’t wait to sit on that sofa… @bbcstrictly,” he wrote on Instagram, before adding the quotation, “Ps. ‘All our dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them’ – Walt Disney.”
Was Janette Manrara on Glee?
Yes, Janette Manrara was a principal dancer on Glee, joining the cast as a member of rival show choir Vocal Adrenaline.
You can spot her in season three performances, notably the song ‘Boogie Shoes’ alongside singer Alex Newell.
She has also worked at the Academy Awards, danced with Jennifer Lopez, and performed in dance stage show Burn the Floor for three years (the same show fellow professional Gorka Marquez has starred in).