The low down on the Strictly glam weekend

Tonight my blog is craft and art free. It’s all about Strictly. 

I am a massive Strictly come dancing fan and apply for tickets every year for every show in the hope that I get lucky. Once my friend got tickets so I went with her, and then last year I got tickets myself so the hubby and I went along for that. 

Imagine my joy in finding out I got tickets again this year. And just when life was pretty miserable as it was just after my father in law passed away…. the perfect pick me up! 

So on Friday the hubby and I set off after work and drove to Elstree. We stayed in the Holiday Inn hotel at Elstree and it was very nice. I had thought it was near the studios but it turned out that’s the Ibis hotel …. doh! So instead it was a 20 mins walk to the studios… not bad but considering I thought I had booked the one less than 5 mins walk … doh! 

Saturday morning we were up early and heading to the studio to get our tickets validated. Unfortunately when you are offered tickets you are not guaranteed entry so you have to get there early to be guaranteed entry. How early? Well we joined the queue at 7.50am and they start validating tickets at 9am. We finally got ours done at 9.50am and we were tickets 305 and 306.  They say it’s 720 people in the studio… but I think around 200 of them are production tickets so I would reckon on 500 being the public at a guess. So I would suggest for people wanting to guarantee entry don’t turn up past 8.30am or you will get very nervous. 

Anyway then you are sent away to do as you please till between 3 and 3.30pm. I think this time can change for each recording dependent on what they have to record. We got back at about 3.10pm and the queue was half what it had been that morning and was already progressing in through security. So quite quickly we were inside and handing our coats into the cloaks and getting my bag checked by security. No phones are allowed so people were handing them in to be collected later. We had left ours at the hotel as we knew there was no point in having them there just to get them taken off us again. 

So now we were in a large holding area in a marquee. There were toilets and a bar and a photo booth thing (we didn’t bother queuing for that) and seats. Not enough seats for everyone but we happily got seats for us for the next stage of waiting.  

Once the studio was ready for us, they then started feeding people into the studio in the number order that you had been validated. So you think maybe the earlier you are there the better the seat? Not necessarily the case. We were shepherded through to upstairs and had an amazing front row of the balcony view. It was brilliant.  Last year we had got there earlier and been a much lower number but were right at the back downstairs.  Definitely a better view for this time. 

Once everyone was in…. that took a while… they then started filming with the music act. In our case Barry Gibb. Not my cup of tea but the man is a legend so happy to say I’ve seen a Bee Gee perform live! The dance that Janette and Giovanni performed was stunning. They did two takes for this and then off went Mr Gibb and his band.

Next Tess and Claudia came out. They filmed some links and then rehearsed the beginning.  And then it was time to start the live show. 

Well that was amazing! Even the couples who didn’t dance brilliantly were still good to watch and the whole event was fabulous.  My hands and arms ached from clapping and my throat from cheering. It was so engaging and gorgeous to watch. The costumes, the music, the dancing and the personalities were all captivating. 

Before we knew it the two hour show was over and whist the celebs and dancers mingled on the dance floor and with their friends and families we got the opportunity to pop to the loo and were given a kit kat and a drink of juice. Because we were upstairs standing up was not allowed so there was only limited stretching possible and by now we most definitely had a numb bum!

Eventually all the cast disappeared and they started setting up to film the results show. Unfortunately for us the stunning dance we watched on TV yesterday night was filmed the week before so no professional dance for us to watch. Then the results were announced. 

Now I’m not going to get involved in the whole debacle of what then happened as I am not in the know of what went on backstage. What I do know is how upset both Anastacia and Brendan were and my heart went out to them both. Melvin was not as good in my opinion so was OK with him going. But the circumstances were unpleasant and also meant we had an extremely long wait as we were waiting for about 45 mins once the couples were announced till they came out and filmed the final part of the show. 

Anyway enough about that… who were my favourites… well Kevin is a favourite of mine and I loved the Vienesse Waltz that he and Louise did. I also was blown away by the Vienesse Waltz that Danny and Oti performed. Ed Balls’ Charleston was fabulous and a revelation. I also enjoyed Giovanni and Laura’s Waltz and Alijaz and Daisy’s cha cha… I have to admit I didn’t really see Daisy dance though… I was rather focused on Alijaz’s rather fine bottom !!!

We finally left the studio on the Saturday at 11.15pm and headed back to the hotel, tired, hot, hungry and happy! It was a brilliant experience and one I would happily repeat (although preferably without the drama of this weekends results!). 

And were we on the TV? Well yes we were. Not clear on this pic but the hubby and I were visible, if you knew where to look, on every wide shot of the studio. Whoop! 

I just in front of the lady in red with the hubby to the right of me.

Do does this make me famous? Famous enough to be a celeb for next year’s series? Well we will see! 

Here we are glammed up ready to go! We scrub up quite well!


Tomorrow normal crafting blogging will resume. 

But for now… 

Keep dancing!

Catherine 

One thought on “The low down on the Strictly glam weekend

  1. Thank you very much for a very informative blog, really enjoyed it. As a result of what you have said ‘re the hotel hoping now to change hotel, we have booked into the Ramada on the M1 thinking it was going to be near the studio so a rethink is in place. Looking forward to the experience of seeing a live show, have seen the tour 4 times so will be completely different experience.

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