Professional dancer Johannes Radebe has praised Strictly Come Dancing for its inclusivity and representation on screen in recent years.


The competition series made waves back in 2020 after featuring its first celebrity same-sex couple, which saw Nicola Adams and Katya Jones paired together, and the following year the show made history with its introduction of the first same-sex male couple with John Whaite and Johannes Radebe.

In the most recent season, viewers saw Layton Williams and Nikita Kuzmin paired together as they cha-cha'd their way to the final in a phenomenal competition, and Radebe is "proud" to be a part of the show that recognises how diverse the world is.

Speaking to at the Radio Times Covers Party 2024, Radebe explained: "I think Strictly is one the shows that shows the entire world how [to be] progressive in terms of inclusion and I'm proud to be a part of an establishment that recognises that it takes all sorts to make the world go round and they're great."

The professional dancer went on to say that the "world is learning" from Strictly, adding: "We are the ones that are teaching the world, so honestly so far I'm happy!"

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Strictly Come Dancing has continued to make room for people showing their true selves on the dance floor, with 2023 finalist Layton Williams previously praising the show for allowing him to be "flamboyant".

Ahead of the final last year, Williams told and other press he wanted to wear costumes on Strictly that were "fabulous and authentic" to what he wanted to represent, and felt as though he managed to do that on the show.

Layton Williams and Nikita Kuzmin dancing in Strictly Come Dancing.
Layton Williams and Nikita Kuzmin. BBC/Guy Levy BBC/Guy Levy

"In order to have fun, I really needed to be true to exactly how I felt," he explained.

Williams said: "The Strictly team have been so fabulous because sometimes I think it might be a first for them to have someone who's been excessively flamboyant.

"And they've really gotten behind me. I'll be like, 'I want to wear that cheeky little moment' and they'll be like, 'OK cool, if that's how you feel comfortable'."

See more photos from the Radio Times Covers Party 2024 in the new issue of Radio Times magazine, on sale Tuesday 6th February.

Strictly Come Dancing returns in 2024. Looking for something to watch? Check out more of our Entertainment coverage or visit our TV Guide and Streaming Guide to find out what's on.


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