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Artem, Anya and James leave Strictly

Posted on June 2, 2014

11 dancetoday nov13

11 dancetoday nov13Strictly Come Dancing professional dancers James Jordan, Artem Chigvintsev and Anya Garnis are to leave the show, the BBC has announced.

James, who had been a regular on the BBC1 series since 2006, has rejected the offer of a reduced role in the series, in which he would have appeared in one-off specials rather than partnering a celebrity. His wife Ola has signed up for the next series.

Artem (pictured on our November cover with Natalie Gumede), who recently appeared on Dancing with the Stars, the US equivalent of Strictly, has decided to stay in the US. Anya Garnis, who joined the show last year, will not return as a dancer, but will be part of the choreography team for the series.

Eight female and seven male professional dancers have been confirmed for the next series of Strictly Come Dancing, including two new dancers. European ballroom champion Joanne Clifton will dance alongside her brother Kevin Clifton, who joined the show last year. She will be joined by Tristan MacManus, who spent three years on Dancing with the Stars, teaming up with celebrities Pamela Anderson, Gladys Knight and skater Dorothy Hamill.

The professional line-up includes Ola Jordan, Natalie Lowe, Aliona Vilani, Iveta Lukosiute, Janette Marara, Karen Hauer, Kristina Rihanoff, Aljaz Skorjanec, Anton du Beke, Brendan Cole, Pasha Kovalev and Robin Windsor. Following the departure of Bruce Forsyth, the series will be hosted by Tess Daly and Claudia Winkleman.

Executive producer Louise Rainbow said: “We’re delighted that Joanne and Tristan will be joining our fantastic cast of professional dancers this year and look forward to them becoming part of the Strictly family. A huge thank you goes out to both Artem and James for being hardworking, dedicated dancers on the show, and we wish them all the very best in their future endeavours.”

On Twitter, James Jordan wrote: “Yes it’s true I will not be returning to ‘BURN THE FLOOR’…. Sorry, I mean ‘Strictly Come Dancing’ However……

“….do not believe everything the BBC have written in their statement.”


Zoë was born in Edinburgh, and saw her first dance performances at the Festival there. She is the dance critic of The Independent, and has also written for The Independent on Sunday, The Scotsman and Dancing Times. In 2002, she received her doctorate from the University of York for a thesis on “Nationhood and epic romance: Ariosto, Sidney, Spenser”. She is the author of The Royal Ballet: 75 Years and The Ballet Lover’s Companion.

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