Finally, Strictly Come Dancing is back, and we're bringing you all the action from Week One.


The 2021 series is up and running, and the celebs are dancing in the famous ballroom for the first time.

While the Strictly Come Dancing 2021 line-up compete for the top spot, the good news is that no one will be out in the first week.

Anton Du Beke makes his first appearance as a full-time judge, promising to be ever so slightly different to Craig Revel Horwood...

But who will soar to the top of the Strictly Come Dancing leaderboard? Who will find themselves in trouble?

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Read on for Strictly Come Dancing 2021 Week One as it happened...

9:20pm: And that's that! What a thrilling show – huge well done to the Strictly team for a fantastic show. Thank you for joining for the first live blog of Strictly 2021.

Enjoy the rest of the series and keeeeeeeep dancing!

9:17pm: Janette! I can't wait to see her lighting up It Takes Two every weeknight on BBC Two. A great choice of host.

9:15pm: There we have it, not quite topping the leaderboard, but joint second with a brilliant score of 30. Adam will certainly be one to watch.

9:12pm: Craig said he was "glued" to Adam's dance... sure. While Motsi "fell in love" with his movements.

"Effortless," said Shirley, and Anton thinks Adam will be "just fine". Hard to disagree with any of that, really!

9:11pm: Good grief, Adam is good. The competition this year is going to be very close... not that we're complaining.

9:08pm: Last but certainly not least, it's Olympic champion Adam Peaty! Have we saved the best until last?

9:07pm: An eight from Craig?! And Motsi?? A nine from Shirley! Oh, and a nine from Anton!! A massive leap to the top of the leaderboard with 32. This year's Strictly is going to be EPIC.

9:05pm: If I could have a small slice of AJ's energy, I'd get so much done, honestly.

9:02pm: Wow, wow, wow, I can't take my eyes off AJ and Kai - what a power pairing! And clearly having the time of their lives with this supercharged Jive. Fab-u-lous.

8:59pm: Another Strictly super-fan up next, with AJ Odudu. And another welcome to Kai, who's performing on the live shows for the first time!

8:58pm: 24 for Judi - and very well deserved! She is thrilled, and aren't we all. Well done, Judi!

8:53pm: An elegant and characterful performance from a gorgeous Judi Love and Graziano. She's clearly loving every moment and we're all here for it!

8:51pm: Indeed.

8:48pm: The first eights of the night for 'Johnannes' making a score of 30 - I'm not crying, you are!

8:46pm: Tears from Johannes as his choreography is praised by Shirley - echoed by the nation. Huge performance.

8:44pm: Make that a fierce and skilled Paso-inspired Tango; John and Johannes came to win. And they just might with this powerful performance.

8:42pm: A Tango? In Week One? I love this bravery.

8:37pm: Big praise from Shirley who claimed Nina had well and truly nailed the "fundamentals" (clearly the word of the evening), and her technique belonged safely in Week Seven.

24 for their Samba, putting them in joint second. Not bad at all!

Now, John and Johannes!

8:36pm: Oh Nina! Huge energy, sass, and performance, just as Queen B would expect. Sasha Fierce she certainly is.

8:34pm: Nina and Neil up next, performing to Mi Gente by Beyoncé, so it's an instant 40 from this member of the Beehive.

8:32pm: Big scores for Greg, scoring 24, getting a bonus point for carrying a cane.

I would offer a bonus 10 just for Emma Thompson's surprise appearance in the crowd, but maybe that's just me.


8:28pm: Mums' favourite Greg dons his top and tails for a charming American Smooth. But really, it's Karen's gorgeous feathery dress that has stolen the limelight here. I'll take one in every colour please.

8:23pm: It's a 20 for Robert and Dianne, but more importantly, the memes have started...

On to Greg and Karen!

8:21pm: A delirious Craig couldn't actually deliver any criticism after, well, whatever that routine was.

Hard relate.

8:19pm: It's danceception now as Robert and Dianne pretend to perform in a dance competition with their Cha Cha Cha to Rasputin by Boney M.

Can't believe I just wrote that sentence - that's Strictly for ya!

8:15pm: 22 for Katie and Gorka, a great score for a hard routine.

Next up: Robert and Dianne.

8:12pm: An electric performance from Katie and Gorka, who performed the first Paso Doble of the series. Lots of drama, which Anton loved (honestly, same), and Craig said the routine was "passionate".

8:05pm: High praise indeed for Rose, with all four judges in agreement... Someone get Rose a ticket to the final, stat!

An impressive 22 for them both, but a surprising low four from Shirley...

On to Katie and Gorka!

8:01pm: Rose and Giovanni look pretty in pink with a brilliantly energetic Jive to Taylor Swift's Shake It Off. Certainly seem to be the viewers' favourites...

7:59pm: Dan dedicated his dance to former co-host Louise Minchin, aw.

But on to the scores... 24 for Dan and Nadiya! A running commentary from the host throughout, with Dan shouting thanks to Craig. He seems pretty happy.

7:56pm: Anton thought Dan was going to be "awful"! Wasn't he wrong?

Craig spotted Dan's counting, Motsi loved the "risk", while Shirley said she'd never seen "a neck that long". Well.

7:54pm: Well, Dan's BBC Breakfast-inspired Quickstep is very good! Full of energy and bounce, the tallest pairing in the competition are here to impress!

7:51pm: 17 for Sara which sadly puts her at the bottom of the leaderboard, not that she's stopped smiling.

Next, it's Dan and Nadiya with a Quickstep.

7:47pm: Shirley fancies a bit more technique, but sees real potential. Anton was sold on Sara's offer while Craig was a bit harsher, saying Sara was "walking". Ouch. Motsi knows Sara is here to give it her all - and I'm with her on that.

7:45pm: if you don't have a smile on your face after this, you're watching the wrong show. Full of energy, and just what Strictly is all about! Go on, Sara!

7:43pm: Aljaz has entered the Dragon's Den and is getting a good grilling from our Sara. A deal was brokered, and now on to the ballroom...

7:41pm: Oh Rhys! A beautiful Viennese Waltz which got high praise indeed from the judges, with Anton saying his footwork was "immaculate". Into the finals you go, Rhys.

A whopping 27 for Rhys and Nancy - massive well done! Though for cool Nancy, there's work to do.

On to Sara and Aljaz.

7:34pm: 18 for Ugo putting him in last place so far, but it's still early days - and still a great score for a hard dance.

Here's Rhys and Nancy!

7:32pm: Craig praised the routine, while Motsi praised lovely Ugo's smile. There's work to do, but a great start for Ugo.

Shirley said Ugo had "fantastic effort" while Anton, not really a fan of a Samba himself, loved the former rugby-player's technique.

7:30pm: Fiery drums?! On Strictly? Now this is a party! Ugo and Oti brought sunshine and energy to the dance floor and for that, I'm grateful.

7:28pm: A Samba on Week One? If anyone can get a Samba out of their partner, Oti can!

7:26pm: Another 21 of the night, I'm seeing a pattern here...

Here comes Ugo and reigning champion Oti!

7:24pm: Anton had a couple of technical pointers, while Craig said it lacked expression, but he admitted it was a "sweet story".

Motsi praised the "sensitivity" of the routine and Shirley called Tilly's performance "mature".

We've had our first disagreement of the night, with Shirley insistent she saw heel leads, but the others not so much... will the scores reflect this?

7:22pm: A Waltz for Tilly who looks lovely in lilac. And a welcome to Nikita, who's just performed for the first time! A beautiful performance showing lots of potential for the rest of the competition. With a dance like that, we'd bet dad Gordon would be hard-pressed finding fault!

7:17pm: The scores are in... 21 for Tom, with a low of four from Craig and a high of seven from Motsi. Not bad, well done Tom!

On to Tilly and Nikita...

7:13pm: A great start for a groovin' Tom dressed head-to-toe in cerise pink - we truly love to see it. I'm impressed, and the public are going to love him. Shirley Ballas is pleased too, saying Tom 'did himself an honour'.

Anton said it was a "wonderful performance", while Motsi asked for a bit more leg action.

Craig "whatever" Revel Horwood thought it was a little stiff, but loved Tom's rhythm.

A hard act to follow indeed...

7:11pm: Well, Tom's had a busy week, hasn't he? He's been McFly-ing all around the country...

7:08pm: The celebs are ready, I'm ready - let's do this. The first couple up are Tom Fletcher and Amy Dowden!

7:05pm: Oh, and some lovely outfits from Tess and Claudia in red and white, respectively. Saturday night is here.

7:03pm: And we're off! Our fabulous Strictly Come Dancing professionals are back with a glorious and colourful performance to Regina Spektor's A Thousand Miles.

Summer is very much still here with these incredible outfits.

6:26pm: The celebs have been limbering up for the first live show, with Sara and pro partner Aljaz getting ready for tonight with a... gossip:

Dan spent his pre-show time checking in on the Ryder Cup...

And Ugo posed up a storm after rehearsals...

6:18pm: Excitement is certainly building for the return of the live shows as the stars take to the ballroom floor for the first time. Here are the Strictly songs and dances for Week One:

  • John Whaite and Johannes Radebe – Tango to Blue Monday by New Order
  • Robert Webb and Diane Buswell – Cha Cha to Rasputin by Boney M.
  • Tom Fletcher and Amy Dowden – Cha Cha to Earth, Wind and Fire by September
  • AJ Odudu and Kai Widdrington – Jive to Gold Dust by DJ Fresh
  • Rhys Stephenson and Nancy Xu – Viennese Waltz to End of the Road by Boys II Men
  • Sara Davies and Aljaz Skorjanec – Cha Cha to The Boss by Diana Ross
  • Katie McGlynn and Gorka Marquez – Tango to Black Hole by Griff
  • Dan Walker and Nadiya Bychkova – Quickstep to Everybody Needs Somebody to Love by The Blues Brothers
  • Tilly Ramsay and Nikita Kuzmin – Waltz to Consequences by Camila Cabello
  • Greg Wise and Karen Hauer – American Smooth to That’s Life by Frank Sinatra
  • Nina Wadia and Neil Jones – Samba to Mi Gente by J Balvin, Willy William ft Beyonce
  • Rose Ayling-Ellis and Giovanni Pernice – Jive to Shake it Off by Taylor Swift
  • Adam Peaty and Katya Jones – Cha Cha to Beggin’ by Maneskin
  • Judi Love and Graziano Di Prima – American Smooth to Chain of Fools by Aretha Franklin
  • Ugo Monye and Oti Mabuse – Samba to Iko Iko (My Bestie) by Justin Wellington ft Small Jam

6:00pm: Welcome to our Strictly Come Dancing live blog! Join us as we'll bring you all the drama, scores and reaction from the ballroom. It's going to be a very busy night as we get our first real look at this year's cast in action.

Last weekend, the celebrities met their partners. And to remind you of the pairings:


Strictly Come Dancing is on BBC One on Saturdays. Want something else to watch? Check out our full TV Guide or visit our Entertainment hub for the latest news.