Strictly Come Dancing’s launch show has been postponed until Friday September 23, following the death of Queen Elizabeth II.
Originally scheduled to air on September 17, two days before the monarch’s funeral, bosses have now confirmed the pre-recorded opener will be released just one day before the first live show on Saturday, September 24.
The United Kingdom was placed in a period of mourning on September 8 after Buckingham Palace announced the Queen’s passing, with much of BBC’s schedule filled with rolling coverage of events leading to her funeral on September 19.
On hold: Strictly Come Dancing’s launch show has been postponed until Friday September 23, following the death of Queen Elizabeth II
Strictly launch show, which was filmed on September 7, will see this year’s celebrity contestants discover their professional partners for the first time.
The couples have been in training ahead of their debut performance, which will be a single day after the launch, in its planned slot on September 24.
Government guidance has stated that entertainment events are under no obligation to be cancelled or postponed occasions during the mourning period, though it has been heavily suggested as a mark of respect.
On hold: The launch show was originally scheduled to air on September 17, two days before the Queen’s funeral, but will now be broadcast four days after the historic event
Strictly’s launch was due to air just two days before the Queen’s funeral, on a day when thousands are expected to queue at Westminster Hall to see Her Majesty lying in state.
It has now been said that the BBC will air the Paddington films in honour of the Queen, with the first first airing on BBC One this Saturday.
While Paddington 2 will be shown later in the evening on the day of the monarch’s funeral.
The Queen famously starred alongside the fictional bear in a special sketch in celebration of her Platinum Jubilee in June.
Tragedy: Much of BBC’s schedule is filled with rolling coverage of events leading to the Queen’s funeral on September 19 following her death last week (pictured on September 6)
Replacement: It has now been said that the BBC will air the Paddington films in honour of the Queen, with the first first airing on BBC One this Saturday
It was previously reported that Prince Charles, 73, and Duchess of Cornwall, 75, [Now King Charles III and Queen Consort Camilla] were planning to host a live episode of Strictly at Buckingham Palace following secret discussions with BBC executives.
Camilla is said to be a ‘massive fan’ of the show and even ‘votes every week’ for her favourite dancing duo.
However, the reportedly plans will no doubt have been shelved in light of recent events.
The schedule change is just one of a number of alterations amid the period of morning, with ITV having cancelled five major daytime TV shows on Wednesday to make way for rolling news coverage of the Queen’s coffin being moved from Buckingham Palace to Westminster Hall.
Duo: The Queen famously starred alongside the fictional bear in a special sketch in celebration of her Platinum Jubilee in June
On Tuesday evening the Queen’s coffin will be flown to London, with Charles and Camilla ready to welcome Her Majesty at Buckingham Palace, before she is taken to Westminster Hall where she will again lie in state.
For four days members of the public will be able to queue up and pay their respects to Her Majesty, before her funeral takes place on Monday.
This year’s lineup includes presenter Helen Skelton, 80s singer Matt Goss, actor Will Mellor, broadcaster Kaye Adams and Paralympics star Ellie Simmonds.
Journey: On Tuesday evening the Queen’s coffin will be flown to London, with Charles and Camilla ready to welcome Her Majesty at Buckingham Palace, before she is taken to Westminster Hall where she will again lie in state
It comes just a week after the first trailer for this year’s Strictly was released, showing this year’s professional dancers.
This series has also seen the introduction of four new professionals, European cup winner Vito Coppola, Chinese National Champion Carlos Gu, former Under 21 British National Champion Lauren Oakley and Latin dance champion Michelle Tsiakkas.
This series will be the first in three years to be broadcast without Covid measures, which forced bosses to introduce restrictions including ‘bubbles’ for training and limited audience numbers.
Change of plan: Reported plans for Queen Consort Camilla and King Charles III to host a live episode of the show from Buckingham Palace have no doubt been shelved in light of events
Series 20 will also include the return to the Blackpool Tower ballroom after a two-year break due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The upcoming series of Strictly will see its stars celebrate 100 years of the BBC with a special themed week this year.
To mark the centenary, the Strictly couples will either dance ‘to a theme tune from an iconic BBC programme or in tribute to one of the BBC’s most-loved services’.
Coming soon: Strictly launch show, which was filmed on September 7, will see this year’s celebrity contestants discover their professional partners for the first time
The anniversary show is also set to feature two special routines by the professionals – one will honour the BBC’s Natural History Programming unit, while the other will see the dancers ‘crashing’ some flagship shows.
Rylan Clark and Janette Manrara will return to host the Strictly spin-off It Takes Two, which airs weekdays on BBC Two, featuring interviews with the couples and judges, along with behind the scenes clips and fun segments.
Meanwhile, Craig Revel Horwood, Shirley Ballas, Motsi Mabuse and Anton Du Beke will return to the judging panel, after Bruno Tonioli confirmed in July he had permanently left the show.
Back: Meanwhile, Craig Revel Horwood, Shirley Ballas, Motsi Mabuse and Anton Du Beke will return to the judging panel, after Bruno Tonioli confirmed in July he had permanently left the show
Bruno was unable to appear on the past two series due to his filming commitments in the US and Covid restrictions, with former professional Anton joining the panel in his place last year.
Bruno told MailOnline that he had found juggling the British show and its American variant Dancing With The Stars shows too taxing, saying: ‘Well I always will miss it, it’s my family, but I mean we’ll always be friends and you never know what’s going to happen.’
Strictly Come Dancing will return on Friday, September 23, followed by the first live show on September 24.
STRICTLY COME DANCING 2022: WHO ARE THE CONTESTANTS?
Profession: Coronation Street star and presenter
Kym says: ‘I’m so delighted that this year they have! I’m a huge fan of the show and can’t believe I’m going to go from watching at home in my pyjamas to actually dancing in front of the judges in a glittery dress.’
Profession: Radio presenter
Richie says: ‘This is a dream come true! I cannot wait to get in those sparkles and sequins and shimmy across the most famous dance floor in the world!’
Profession: Former athlete
Ellie says: ‘To be asked to be part of the Strictly family is just so exciting and I cannot wait, it’s going to so much fun.’
Profession: Radio DJ
Tyler says: ‘It’s a show that means so much to me and my family and I can’t wait to seriously shake a leg on that shiny dance floor… with a side of sequins.’
Ellie says: ‘Well, cover me in fake tan and roll me in sequins! I’m absolutely over the moon to be a part of Strictly 2022!’
TONY ADAMS MBE
Profession: Retired footballer and manager
Tony says: ‘To say I’m excited is an understatement – the lure of the sequins and the call of the salsa has me swapping my battered old football boots for a set of Strictly soft shoes’
Profession: EastEnders actor
James says ‘I’m not known for my shimmy or my twinkle toes – in fact my kids regularly laugh at my dad dancing but it’s an honour to be asked and I’m going to give it my best shot.’
Profession: TV and radio broadcaster
Helen says: ‘I’m really excited to get stuck into a fun adventure. My family and friends have always loved the show and can’t wait for me to get started’
Will says: ‘I know it will be a huge challenge but that’s what life is all about. This is also my Mum’s favourite show and she’s had a really tough few years so I’m doing this is for her as well. Bring it on!’
Profession: Television presenter
Kaye says: ‘I said I wanted to make the last year of my fifties memorable and i can’t think of a better way of doing it than showing the world my two left feet. Pray for me!’
Jayde says: ‘I’ve been a massive fan of the show for years. I feel like I’m watching myself in a dream and I can’t believe I’ve manifested this.’
Matt says: ‘I’ve been reclusive, I come and work and then go back to America. I thought, it’s time for me to come home and get out of my own way’
Molly says: ‘I already know it’s gonna be an experience of a lifetime and I can’t wait to meet the rest of the Strictly family I’ll be sharing it with.’
Fleur says: ‘I’m equally nervous and thrilled to be part of this year’s Strictly line up. I’m excited to learn new skills and I want to soak up every moment of this magical experience.’
Profession: Wildlife cameraman and presenter
Hamza says: ‘I am absolutely over the moon to be joining Strictly 2022. Never in a million years did I think I’d be on such a cool show.’