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Strictly - Week 4!

The dancers are really getting their teeth into the competition now!

Its 4 weeks in and we are starting to see some real

stand out performances.

However for some there is also the disappointment of finding yourself at the bottom of the leaderboard.

So what do our Pro’s think the bottom 3 couples in this weeks leaderboard can improve to stand a better chance of a higher score in the coming weeks?

Rose Ayling-Ellis & Giovanni Pernice - Cha Cha

Credit has to be given to Rose firstly for her excellent timing and how she has overcome the challenge of not being able to hear the music.

She displayed some good technique required in the Cha-Cha during figures that were more stationary such as her Cuban Breaks, Time Steps and Swivels.

Her action was not as strong in steps that travelled more such as her Walks and Locks and Natural Top.

To improve this she needs to work on the use of her feet in connecting her weight and centre to the floor. This will allow her to create more pressure through her feet which will help her articulate the actions required, such as straight legs and hip actions. And also make her appear more grounded.

- Rosie

Dan Walker & Nadiya Bychkova - Cha Cha

I think Dan danced quite well in his Cha Cha and knew the routine really well so was really confident with it. He also looked like he was having loads of fun and really committed to the performance. For me it looked a little too “steppy” as there wasn’t a lot of flow from one move to the next. This made him also look quite wooden and stiff. I’d like to see him develop the use of his legs and knees more, this would also help him achieve his hip action and give more flow to his dancing and movements.


Judi Love & Graziano Di Prima - Waltz

From watching the waltz routine, I feel the choreography was well chosen and matched the couple dynamic. In order to move forward in a better direction perhaps more work on the actions required for each dance is needed. There are a lot of times when the dancing looks stiff. Waltz should have an ebb and flow to it emphasised by leg lowering actions and foot rise movements. In fairness the use of foot rise was ok but there needs to be more fluidity and a little bit more dynamic movement for this couple to stand out better I think. But the choice of choreography can’t be faulted.

- Ian

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It’s Week 3 already!! And it’s Monday. 🤩 That means it’s time for a RISE review.

🎬 This week was “Movie Week” and each of our team members have judged the dances based on a different aspect and picked their favourite performance based on this.

What are your thoughts? Let us know in the comments below!

Best technical performance by Rosie. 🔍

A tough choice between the top two on the leaderboard, however I am going to have to go with the Street Commercial routine by Rhys & Nancy. I loved the fact that it had a movie theme but without the gimmicks as this allowed the brilliant technique to shine through. The difficulty of this style should not be underestimated. Incorporating the different styles found within the street genre requires serious energetic movement throughout the full body. Rapid changing of levels and directions, agility and using the full body to create lots of different dynamic shapes. All of this to syncopations that match and enhance what you are hearing in the music the music. Rhys absolutely delivered all of this as well as great use of his feet to create the rhythm, energy and movement needed. For me I thought he deserved a few more 10’s!

Best choreography by Ian. 🏆

The choreographic choices for all the routines were very good. My favourite would have to be the Titanic Foxtrot as the use of content in this dance was outstanding, simplistic and pure. The use of weave actions, double Fallaway whisks and articulated use of foot work dancing through some characteristic Foxtrot figures like the Feather Step, 3-Step and Feather Finish were great to see, it just goes to show that there’s power in basic work.

Best Artistic Interpretation/Performance by Nic. 🎭

Hands down this was John & Johannes for me! It was believable and John completely committed to the character and the style of the dance. The way he held his face and mouth throughout and just slightly tilted his chin to depict the matadors stance without compromising his posture or position is quite a tricky thing to master, but he pulled it off wonderfully. Looking down without actually looking down. It was fierce! I also loved the use of an occasional "AH" or two, very traditional in a Paso Doble for the dancers to vocalise sounds which adds to the authenticity of the Paso. To take the famous Spanish dance that usually depicts a bullfight and transform it onto a pirate's ship deck so seamlessly and with such intention, I had to watch it twice to take it all in.

Most Entertaining Dance by Emma. 🎪

With so many entertaining dances this week I’m really struggling to pick just one favorite! One couple that really stood out to me was Katie and Gorka with their Cruella De Vil American Smooth. It’s mainly Katie’s portrayal of Cruella that did it for me! Her performance skills, her facial expressions, her whole character just screamed Cruella from the moment she walked down the stairs to the end of the dance. I think putting Gorka in a Dalmatian suit let the whole performance down a bit however….

It’s time for our second Strictly RISE review.

The pressure was really on this week as the risk of being eliminated from the competition threatened the couples for the first time.

The standard overall this year is really high with so many couples clearly in the running with a chance to win the coveted glitter-ball trophy.

This week at RISE Ian and Rosie give their comments on the two couples at the top, and bottom of the leaderboard!

⭐️ TOP

Tilly & Nikita - Charleston: Charleston is sometimes branded as one of the easier or more “gimmicky” dances on the show. However the dance does require a great deal of energy, stamina, characterisation and technique to give a credible performance, which Tilly absolutely managed. Her footwork, balance, spins and tricks were all executed cleanly whilst she maintained the energy level and performance all the way through. She definitely deserved to be at the top of the leaderboard with great scores! - Rosie

Sara & Alijaz - Foxtrot: A very well chosen piece of music and a dance routine which really suited the couple. I agree with Craig when he said that ballroom is clearly her strength. The use of action and technique was good with an ease of movement and clear drive action, no question that they were the best dance of the evening! - Ian


Adam & Katya - Quickstep: Agreed with the judges comments about the weak use of frame and the choreography mistakes. A good energy and attempt though as the ballroom dances are tough for the male non-professional dancers to do well. There’s definitely a lot more potential to come through as long as the choreography choices match his strengths. - Ian

Nina & Neil - Tango Unfortunately it’s easy to see how this dance slipped down to the bottom of the leaderboard and eventually led to Nina leaving the show. The strength and skill required to maintain a good shape and posture whilst executing the attack and staccato rhythms of Tango just wasn’t there from Nina. She did however give a huge amount of effort and energy to the performance which she can be proud of. - Rosie

If there is any thing Strictly related you would love us to review let us know and we’ll leave our answer in the comments below!