Name: Kellie Bright
Yes, it's true. I'm going to be head to toe in sequins and dancing (well trying to) on a Saturday night show that you may have heard of… 💃— Kellie Bright (@kelliebright76) August 12, 2015
Famous for: Playing Queen Vic landlady Linda Carter on EastEnders.
Bio: Bright is used to life in the spotlight having been in the acting game for over two decades. Her big break came in 1989 when she played Sally Simpkins in CITV’s T-Bag series, a part that led to roles in such series as The Upper Hand and Bad Girls.
Fans of Radio 4 know her as the first actress to play Kate Madikane in The Archers, while EastEnders devotees now see her four nights a week as publican Linda Carter, alongside Danny Dyer, who plays screen partner Mick.
Since her Walford debut over Christmas 2013, Bright has been at the centre of many of the soap’s storylines, the most high profile of which being Linda’s rape by Dean Wicks in October 2014. Bright’s nuanced performance won her a British Soap Award earlier this year for Best Actress.
Despite the heavy nature of those EastEnders plotlines, Bright still found time to show off her dance skills in an Albert Square version of Grease for Children in Need, where she partnered Dyer’s Danny as Sandy:
See Linda’s idiosyncratic performance of Candle in the Wind below:
And watch a young Bright in the very first episode of The Upper Hand:
Of her upcoming appearance on Strictly, Bright says, “It’ll be a challenge – but I want to see what my body is capable of.
“I haven’t really done any exercise since I had my little boy – and he’s three-and-a-half now! I started training about three weeks ago at my Cross Fit Gym, which offers a special type of training.
“It’s all about strengthening and increasing your body’s metabolic condition. It’s about an hour’s workout. I do exercises like flipping tyres.
“I have always enjoyed exercise but now it’s going to be a priority. One of the perks of doing Strictly is how fit it makes you.”