Strictly Come Dancing’s Craig Revel Horwood says Bruno Tonioli will return for 2021 series

The judge said Bruno would be a part of the coming series but revealed the exact nature of his role is still undecided.

Craig Revel Horwood and Bruno Tonioli are judges on BBC One's Strictly Come Dancing

Craig Revel Horwood has assured fans Strictly Come Dancing judge Bruno Tonioli will feature in the show this year, although it remains to be seen whether he will be back on the judging panel or dialling in virtually once more.

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Tonioli was notably absent from the most recent series on BBC One due to his commitment to the US version Dancing with the Stars and the travel restrictions which were in place late last year due to COVID-19.

While the current vaccine rollout is a promising development, there remains much uncertainty about when exactly “normal” life will return and so Craig stopped short of confirming whether his colleague would be back in the studio in 2021.

However, he went on to say, if that were not possible, Bruno would continue to provide his commentary virtually via a live video link.

“We’re hoping Bruno comes back,” Craig said on Good Morning Britain today. “We really do want him there in the seat – whether he stays in the seat or not as he’s generally up and down like a yo-yo!

“Of course we want him back. If he can’t come back then he’ll do what he did last time, you know due to restrictions, and just do lives and crosses and feeds to the studio, which was great fun as it was anyway.”

RadioTimes.com has approached the BBC for comment on Bruno’s role next series.

Craig, who is known for being one of the more critical voices on Strictly’s expert panel, said he is “really looking forward” to the 2021 series after the team at BBC One delivered such an impressive series against all odds last year.

“I think the BBC did an amazing job and have protocols in place for absolutely every single situation, so you will get Strictly and a much fuller version this year,” he continued. “Obviously last year they had to isolate in time, so we had to start a month later, they’re planning on doing the full version this year.”

Ultimately, it was comedian Bill Bailey who lifted the famous Glitterball trophy at the end of Strictly’s latest edition, with professional partner Oti Mabuse securing her second win in a row.

The Radio Times Easter issue is out now. 

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Good Morning Britain airs weekdays at 6am on ITV. Strictly Come Dancing returns to BBC One later this year. While you’re waiting, have a browse through the rest of our Entertainment coverage or visit our TV Guide to see what’s on tonight.