Television

BBC expands 'Strictly Come Dancing' show

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MUMBAI: UK pubcaster BBC will expand its dance based reality show Strictly Come Dancing. The new season of the show kicks off on BBC One next month. Two extra weeks have been added to the show along with two more celebrities than last year. 14 stars will be paired with internationally renowned professional dancers in what is termed as the hottest competition of 2006. In India Sony airs a local version of the show.

The participants will include former Spice Girl Emma Bunton who is now a solo singer, actress Georgina Bouzova and cricketer Mark Ramprakash. Bunton will be dancing with Darren Bennett.

Bruce Forsyth and his co-host Tess Daly will once again return to present the show. Len Goodman, Craig Revel Horwood, Arlene Phillips and Bruno Tonioli also return to judge the competitors' performances.

Forsyth said, "The whole nation seems to have taken Strictly Come Dancing to its heart in a way that we could never have believed it would happen. I can't wait to get back on screen with this wonderful show. Here's to a great fourth series!"

"With a line-up like this, the new series is set to be bigger and better than ever before. Where else could you see a Spice Girl dancing alongside Jimmy Tarbuck?" adds Daly.

In a change to last year's format, week one will witness boys dancing to stay in the competition whilst the girls entertain with a group Mambo. In the second week, the female celebrities will fight to stay in the competition, whilst the men kick back with a group West Coast Swing. From week three all couples will compete against each other performing either jive or tango.

The couples will be judged on the basis of public as well as studio voting, with the lowest-scoring couple leaving the competition.

As in previous series, all the proceeds from viewer voting will go towards BBC Children in Need which last year raised over £1.5 million.

Also returning is the daily sister show Strictly Come Dancing – It Takes Two with Claudia Winkleman on BBC Two. It features footage from rehearsals and training as well as interviews with the judges and the contestants. All the latest news and gossips on the training and the show can be found on the website, bbc.co.uk/strictlycomedancing.

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