Strictly Come Dancing 2020 launch date confirmed by Shirley Ballas

Strictly Come Dancing’s return date has been confirmed by Shirley Ballas.

Appearing on The One Show to talk about her new book, the head judge spoke about the upcoming series of the dance competition.

She then confirmed that the launch night will air on October 17, with the live shows starting a week later on October 24.

‘Well our launch show is the 17th, and I believe our first live show is the 24th of October,’ she told Alex Jones and Chris Ramsey as she appeared on the series.

‘We’re all ready to go, everything’s in place – a great cast, it’s very very exciting. We’ll be going into these cold winter months with baubles, bangles and beads and lots of joy.’

This date was yet to be confirmed by the Strictly reps until now.

This year’s line-up will have a whole different kind of experience with the ballroom – with new procedures in place because of coronavirus.

The launch night, which is pre-recorded, will see the celebs pair up with their pro partners for the first time.

In a twist to the usual format, the first group dance won’t be taking place on the dancefloor, and each couple will be performing their bit for a tape that will then be cut together.

Best behaviour is a must too – as if they test positive for coronavirus, they will be automatically ruled out of the competition due to the two-week quarantine imposed by the government.

Running for just nine weeks, there also won’t be a Halloween theme week, and no visit to Blackpool.

Among the competitors will also see Nicola Adams joining forces with a female pro to become the first ever same-sex couple to compete.

Metro.co.uk has contacted Strictly reps for further comment and confirmation.

Strictly Come Dancing launches October 17 on BBC One.

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