Norfolk’s Caroline Flack takes us behind the scenes of Strictly Come Dancing
09:18 10 November 2014
Last night she made it to Blackpool for the next round of Strictly Come Dancing (just!) but Caroline Flack says that what she is really looking forward to is Christmas in Norwich.
The presenter, who grew up in Thetford, has been proving a Saturday night sensation on the dance floor, with her Strictly partner Pasha Kovalev.
And although the pair suffered a scare last night, ending up in the bottom two, they survived to get through to the next round - which will be held at the Tower Ballroom, in Blackpool, and is considered one of the highlights of the Strictly calendar.
But the glitter and the sequins are all a long way from Wayland High School in Watton where she was a keen member of its dance group as a teenager.
In an interview in this month’s EDP Norfolk magazine, she said she had jumped at the chance to be on the show, when approached earlier this year.
“It was first mentioned to me at the start of the year and as soon as I heard, I was just ‘yes, yes, I have to do this’, I was just so excited as I had always really, really wanted to do it.”
Flack left Norfolk at 16 to study music and theatre at college in Cambridge before making the move to London to pursue her career.
But she tries to get back to Norfolk whenever she can and her parents often visit her in London. “All my family still live in Norwich and, as well as my brother and sisters, I have lots of nieces and nephews who I adore. They absolutely love Strictly, but it makes me laugh as they also love Pixie (Lott) and Steve (Backshall), so they asked me if its is okay to vote for them.”
Flack’s boyfriend is also from Norwich – Jack Street is manager of the singer-songwriter Sam Smith and the group Disclosure. She says: “I have already been told I am coming home for Christmas at Jack’s parents’ and it will be great because I will get to see all my family and the children as well.”
Inspired by Flack’s Strictly success so far, EDP Norfolk magazine has kept the dance theme waltzing through its November issue, which is out now, with features on Norwich Masterchef semi-finalist and Lindy Hop champion Robert Austin; dance schools around the county; the city couple who taught the world to dance in the 1920s, and party wear to help you feel confident on the dance floor whatever your size or age.
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Caroline Flack’s Strictly campaign suffered its biggest jolt yet, when she and partner Pasha Kovalev found themselves in the dance-off for the first time.
The pair were in the bottom two after the public vote, but were saved by the judges, who instead sent home television presenter Alison Hammond - partnered by Aljaz Skorjanec.
Flack and Kovalev performed their waltz to Three Times a Lady by The Commodores while Hammond and Skorjanec did their Charleston to Friend Like Me by the late Robin Williams, from the film Aladdin.
Revel Horwood chose to save Flack and said: “One is a fun dance, one is a very serious dance, but I have to go for the best dance and that is Caroline and Pasha.”
Darcey Bussell and Bruno Tonioli agreed - sealing Hammond’s fate. Head judge Len Goodman added: “I would have agreed with my colleagues and saved Caroline and Pasha.”
After the result, Hammond gave her support to fellow presenter Flack. “Caroline smashed it tonight - I want her to go on and get to the final,” she added.
Hammond’s exit means the continued presence in the show of Judy Murray, who is emerging as something of an unlikely star. Murray - the mother of tennis player Andy - once again failed to impress the judges, coming bottom on Saturday’s show with her pasa doble. Once again, though, the public voted to keep her in.