My Night in the Strictly Come Dancing Audience

As regular readers of this blog will know, I am a huge fan of Strictly Come Dancing. Every autumn from now until Christmas, most Saturday nights will see me welded to the couch drinking in the gorgeous costumes and intricate footwork. I've also been trying to get tickets to the live shows for years, but no dice - you have to go into a ballot and they get something like 1.5 million applications for 5,000 tickets. So imagine my shock and delight when I got an email telling me I'd got two tickets for the Saturday live show of the opening weekend!

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I went with my friend H (sadly Nick could not be lured with the promise of Ola Jordan in a small sequinned outfit) and we met up at St Pancras very, very early - despite the fact the tickets say doors open at 3 PM for a 6.30 PM show, I'd been told to queue as early as possible if you want to guarantee yourself a space in the studio.

After a 20 minute train journey and getting slightly lost on the way from the train station, we made our way to the queue. There were quite a few people in front of us including some who'd been there since 6.30 that morning!

We waited for about two and a half hours before a nice man from the BBC turned up to validate our tickets, ensuring we would get a seat to watch the show.


Then it was off to Caffe Nero for a spot of lunch and to get ourselves glammed up.


All the make-up! (plus a scabby tissue and the Times Magazine).

At 3 PM we went back to the studio to wait in the holding area for a while before being summoned to our seats. At this point the queue was ridiculously long - you can see how many people there were there and this was just those guaranteed a seat!


We then had to go through security where sadly they confiscate your phones and cameras so I couldn't take pictures in the studio, but once you are inside it is everything you imagine it to be - ridiculously sparkly and so many lights. We were squealing like excited five-year-olds at a birthday party who'd had too much sugar.

Despite being numbers 162 and 163 in the queue, we got incredibly good seats on the second row right behind the judges (though sadly I didn't make it onto the TV as there was a light in front of my face!). After everyone got settled in we watched the filming of the professional group dance that will be in next week's show - I don't want to spoil it but suffice to say it is completely spellbinding and seriously impressive.

Tess and Claudia came out just before the show to say hello to everyone and practise the intro and were both lovely. I can safely say that Tess is super-tall and ridiculously gorgeous - she had the most amazing smoky eye make-up - whilst Claudia is brilliantly funny and a lot taller than she seems on telly (though the high heels might have been part of that). I also got a 'Hello love!' from Anton - here is where I out myself as an Anton fan having been to a few of his and Erin's shows in previous years - and a hello from Kevin who is just completely adorable.

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There were also a ridiculous number of gorgeous frocks on the celebs and pros - I particularly loved Frankie's emerald green prom dress and Kristina's red and black number, as well as her awesome hair and red lipstick.

My favourite routines were Steve and Ola's tango (OK, I will admit Steve's arms played a large part in that), Alison and Aljaz's infectiously fun cha-cha-cha, Frankie and Kevin's beautiful waltz and Simon and Kristina's high-energy jive. But even for the routines I wasn't so keen on, the atmosphere was so incredible I couldn't help but get swept up in all. It does go slightly panto but it's so much fun I honestly didn't care!

If you're a Strictly fan then I really recommend applying for tickets - it might take forever to get one and it's a long day with lots of waiting around, but it is so, so worth it. Even though I've heard the music for years, there's nothing quite like being there when the band starts playing 'da da da da da da da' and everyone is clapping along...

6 comments:

  1. Wow what an experience! What happens to those who don't get seats? Do they go somewhere else?
    x

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    1. Essentially you can go on standby - the doors open time on the tickets is 3PM but someone from the BBC shows up to validate your tickets at 12PM, so you can go off for a bit in between. If people then don't come back you might get in on standby.

      However, most people arrive well before 12PM; we got there at 9.45, but when we came back to actually get into the studio the two people in front of us had arrived at 7.15 and were numbers 29 and 30 in the queue (so basically right on the front). I think were I to do it again I'd probably get a hotel the night before and stay there to get in the queue a little earlier.

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  2. OH WOW that's amazing, I have only been to dancing on ice before this looks like a completely different experience and like you can get all glammed up and pretty1 xxx





    Blonde of carbs

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    1. It was utterly wonderful, though there were some seriously glamorous people there - I wore a leopard print skater dress and red lippy and felt really underdressed!

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  3. omg omg omg i'm so jealous ahhh! I've been applying for tickets but no luck :( hopefully some time though ahha. Sounds like you had an amazing time :) x
    | Life as a Petite || Fashion, Crafts & Lifestyle Blog |

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    1. It was honestly the best time ever - I was very tempted to hide out in the studio for the rest of the series! Definitely keep applying, I think this is the fifth year I've applied and the first time I've got them so persistence may well pay off...

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