Strictly Come Dancing – Leeds First Direct Arena

STRICTLY hit Leeds again and delivered the warm cosy feeling that hits me every September when the new series starts.

This year for the first time all four judges joined the tour – Craig Revel Horwood, Shirley Ballas, Darcey Bussell and Bruno Tonioli – casting their critical and sometimes flamboyant eyes over dances performed by some of the Strictly 2018 cast.

The competitors included Stacey Dooley, Dr Ranj and Joe Sugg.

All the dancers on the tour this year could certainly hold their own, with not one cringeworthy dancer among them.

They all performed dances from the series but, although we were treated to some spectacular dances, for me the whole show contained too much Latin and freestyle-type dances with only one true ballroom dance (a competent Viennese wwaltz by Lauren and AJ).

Ore Oduba took the reins as host, and although it was evident that he had not lost his passion for dance I felt he did not fully engage the audience. A lot of what he said came across as scripted.

My favourite part of the evening had to be the surprisingly wonderful vocal styling of Bruno Tonioli as he opened the second act with the song Americana.

Katrina Knights