Ballroom to Broadway: dance star Anton Du Beke talks footwork, partners and the future ahead of Pavilion show (From Bournemouth Echo)
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Ballroom to Broadway: dance star Anton Du Beke talks footwork, partners and the future ahead of Pavilion show
Strictly Come Dancing star Anton Du Beke will be showing off his fancy footwork and his singing when he arrives in Bournemouth next weekend.
The star of the BBC television show is in typically buoyant mood ahead of his appearance at the Pavilion, despite being without his usual dance partner Erin Boag, who misses the tour due to being pregnant.
“I’m really excited about it,” he said.
“We always come down to Bournemouth and we have lovely audiences at the Pavilion, so we enjoy it enormously.
“This year Erin is not here as she is pregnant.
“It gives me the opportunity to dance with Summer Strallen.”
Anton is joined on his Ballroom to Broadway tour by the West End star for a show which also includes moments for Anton to crack a few jokes between numbers.
He added: “My Inspiration is Fred Astaire’s The Band Wagon. It’s lovely.
“I love the numbers and this has that sort of feel.”
Anton said he has loved dancing with his new partner for this tour.
“Ballroom is my thing,” he said. “I’m dancing ballroom numbers and I will be singing as well.”
Anton will perform two shows during his visit, including a matinee.
Lance Ellington, a singer on Strictly Come Dancing, is singing on the tour, which also features conductor Richard Balcombe, the Raymond Gubbay Big Band Orchestra and a cast of ensemble dancers expected to give the evening that Broadway magic.
The music will include the songs of Cole Porter, George Gershwin, Jerry Herman and Andrew Lloyd Webber.
Among the classic hits will be You’re the Top, Anything Goes, Opus One, Rhythm of Life, Hushabye Mountain and Begin the Beguine.
“It’s going to be an evening of singing and dancing and fabulous music,” Anton added.
Anton’s shows also feature question and answer sessions for his fans to get to know him more.
He enjoyed going further in the Strictly dancing competition with his partner in the latest series, the actress and former Bond girl Fiona Fullerton.
In previous years it has been difficult for Anton to progress, he has danced with the likes of Ann Widdecombe and Nancy Dell’Ollio.
“It was tremendous,” he said. “It was a great series.
“There were some very good dancers and I thought they would be. I stayed in it until the Blackpool show, which was tremendous.
“Last year was a good year that went from strength to strength.”
Anton has also danced on the television show with celebrities Lesley Garrett CBE, Esther Rantzen OBE, Patsy Palmer, Jan Ravens, Kate Garraway, Gillian Taylforth, Laila Rouass, and Jerry Hall.
He has been tipped by some to be a future presenter of Strictly, but it is not something he wants to discuss out of respect for Bruce Forsyth, currently in the role.
“I’m great friends with Bruce and he is my hero,” Anton said.
Anton and Erin were chosen to star in the first series of Strictly Come Dancing in 2004 and he has been ever present since then, becoming a household name.
He has toured with Erin on their tours Cheek to Cheek, Steppin’ Out, Puttin’ On The Ritz, Let’s Do It and Anton and Erin Go To Hollywood.
And Anton is looking forward to seeing her return to the dance floor in the future.
He said: “Erin is not giving up. She’s not retiring. Come the end of this year she will be back at it preparing for some more work in 2015.”
Anton’s popularity brought him invitations to present non-dance programmes on primetime television including the BBC’s Step up to the Plate and the Saturday night show Hole in the Wall, firstly as a team captain in series one, then returning to host the show himself in series two.
l Anton Du Beke’s Ballroom to Broadway show is at Bournemouth’s Pavilion Theatre on February 23 at 3pm and at 7.30pm