Former Strictly Come Dancing professional dancer Giovanni Pernice has responded to allegations of "abusive or threatening behaviour" towards his former dance partners.


Speaking out publicly on his Instagram, Pernice's statement read: "To my fans and followers. Every week, there are totally untrue stories about me in the media.

"As you know, I have always rejected any suggestion of abusive or threatening behaviour. The latest accusations are simply false. I am cooperating fully with the ongoing BBC investigation, which will determine the truth.

"As requested, I have stayed silent, but I am looking forward to the conclusion of the investigation and ultimately clearing my name and establishing the truth."

He went on: "I am so happy to be back on tour. Thank you all for your continued support – you[r] messages and love mean so very much to me. I will hopefully see many of you very soon and I look forward to clearing my name. With love, Giovanni."

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Giovanni Pernice and Amanda Abbington performing on Strictly Come Dancing 2023 in sparkly clothes
Giovanni Pernice and Amanda Abbington performing on Strictly Come Dancing 2023. BBC/Guy Levy

This isn't the first time that Pernice has denied allegations against him, having previously responded to the claims on his Instagram last month, writing at the time: "Of course, I reject any suggestion of abusive or threatening behaviour, and I look forward to clearing my name."

He wrote: "Those who have followed my journey on Strictly Come Dancing over the last decade will know that I am passionate and competitive. No-one is more ambitious for my dance partners than me.

"I have always striven to help them be the very best dancers they can be. This has always come from a place of love and wanting to win - for me and my dance partners. Thank you all again for your continued love and support! Giovanni."

Pernice's new statement comes after last week's announcement that the dancer had officially exited Strictly after being a mainstay on the show for the past nine years.

The BBC confirmed his departure amidst the confirmation of this year's professional line-up.

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Pernice's latest comments follow claims made by previous Strictly partner and actress Amanda Abbington, who has since stated that she notified the show's production team to Pernice's alleged behaviour "early on".

"Giovanni is nasty," she told The Mail on Sunday. "He was awful to a few of us. I went to producers early on and told them about Giovanni."

She added: "You don't understand how awful this all is … Giovanni's fans have started trolling me now. I have had to come off social media and I'm getting death threats."

Abbington left Strictly in a surprise exit from the show last year despite being on course to be one of the year's favourites.

Throughout his tenure on the show, Pernice has danced alongside celebs including Georgia May Foote, Debbie McGee and Faye Tozer, as well as Rose Ayling-Ellis, who he won the coveted Glitterball Trophy with back in 2021.

The BBC issued a statement last month urging people "not to indulge in speculation".

"It is a longstanding position that the BBC does not comment on specific matters related to individuals," it said. "Nor, ordinarily, would we comment on whether we are reviewing any individual complaints.

"Recently, we have seen a number of media reports about a high-profile show. Anyone involved in a complaint has a right to confidentiality and fair process.

"If a complaint is made to the BBC, we assess and take any necessary steps to establish the facts, whether there is a case to answer, and, if appropriate, what action should be taken."

It continued: "This is all within the context of the BBC having duties of care to everyone linked to a complaint - that applies to those that have raised the complaint and to those that have been complained about.

"Whilst we know our shows have been positive experiences for many of those who have taken part, we will always look at any issues raised with care, fairness and sensitivity to everyone concerned. We will not be commenting further."

Giovanni Pernice wearing an all black suit
Giovanni Pernice. BBC

As for this upcoming season of Strictly Come Dancing, there's been no word just yet on when the run will land on our screens - but we do know that fan-favourite dancers like Vito Coppola, Nikita Kuzmin and Dianne Buswell will all return to the dancefloor.

Other returning dancers include Amy Dowden, Kai Widdrington, Jowita Przystał, Gorka Márquez, Nancy Xu, Johannes Radebe, Karen Hauer and Katya Jones, among many others.

Strictly Come Dancing will return later this year.


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