Strictly Come Dancing winner Harry Judd took to the stage in Cardiff last night – and said he was bracing himself for a tough reception from the Welsh crowd.
The McFly drummer, who won the latest series just before Christmas was performing alongside his fellow contestants at last night’s glitterball extravaganza, including runner-up Chelsee Healey, Jason Donovan, former Wales footballer Robbie Savage and Nancy Dell’Olio.
And before the show, which also included judges Len Goodman, Craig Revel-Horwood and Bruno Tonioli, the 26-year-old told us he was expecting some banter from his mate Robbie’s Welsh fans.
Having won 24 out of a possible 27 in the live shows so far, Harry laughed: “I expect he’ll get seven wins out of seven wins down here in Wales. He’s lucky Russell Grant and Alex Jones aren’t here too though. He’ll get lots of support tonight.
“We’re having such fun on tour. It’s a lot less nerve-wracking than the show because this is just for fun.
“I’ll be dancing the Argentine tango and the quickstep with Aliona and I love performing them. I’ve done pretty well so far on tour but here in Wales, you never know?”
Harry is used to performing in Wales with his band McFly but the Motorpoint Arena has been transformed into a fabulous set, complete with massive glitterball and live band and he said he’d never seen it looking so impressive.
He said: “It seems much more intimate than when I’ve performed here with the boys, but it’s good to be back. The only difference this time is that the audience is so different. I’ve never had so many grannys or mums supporting me but I’m obviously really grateful for everyone who rang in and voted.
“I suppose this is our chance to give something back to the audience. I’m looking forward to it. I’m looking forward to hearing a few Welsh heckles.”
Runner-up Chelsee, who dances with Pasha Kovolev, said she was pleased to have got a win under her belt after charming her hometown crowd in Manchester.
But she said it was obvious Harry was the king of this 2012 tour, which also stars ex-Olympic swimmer Mark Foster and ex-EastEnder Anita Dobson.
She said: “I’ve just had so much fun doing Strictly I don’t know what I’m going to do with myself when it all ends. I’ve left Waterloo Road now so I suppose I’ll take a little break and then start back on the audition circuit. I was really pleased to win at Manchester, in front of my home crowd. That was fab!”
Chelsee has loved dressing up in the glamorous gowns but she said she’s looking forward to slobbing out in tracksuit bottoms and hoodies.
She said: “I’ve loved the dresses, the whole Strictly experience has been amazing but I do tend to slob out when I’m not performing. I’ll be dancing the Beyonce show dance that I did in the final and the quickstep so I’m hoping the Cardiff crowd enjoy the show. It’s certainly a lot of fun.”
Read our review of last night’s show in tomorrow’s Echo Live. Strictly Come Dancing: The Live Tour 2012 is on at Cardiff Motorpoint Arena at various times until Sunday. Box office: 029 2022 4488