Strictly Come Dancing: BBC bosses to cast wheelchair user in upcoming series after Rose Ayling-Ellis success
BBC bosses intend to cast a wheelchair user in the upcoming series of Strictly Come Dancing following great success with former contestants with disabilities, Rose Ayling-Ellis and Ellis Simmonds
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Strictly bosses are reportedly set to cast a wheelchair user for the upcoming series to air later this year. This comes after the resounding success of former contestants with disabilities, Rose Ayling-Ellis and Ellie Simmonds.
Reports suggest this was initially meant to happen last year but producers ran out of time to train a professional dancer. BBC chiefs are now looking for a contestant who fits the bill, as Strictly Come Dancing continues to be one of the most inclusive shows on TV.
The decision comes after the success of casting the first ever deaf participant in former Eastenders actress Rose Ayling-Ellis. She won the contest in 2021 alongside Giovanni Pernice, whilst paralympian Ellie Simmonds made it to week six last year.
A BBC source revealed: “This is an extremely challenging project but one that Strictly bosses think is worth it and believe it is going to be absolutely brilliant. There is so much excitement about this at the BBC right now.
“It is yet another example of how progressive and inclusive the programme is. As well as creating some wonderful television moments, it will also give an amazing opportunity to someone in a wheelchair.
“The original plan was that it would happen last year but the logistics are very difficult and to get a professional dancer trained and ready to take this on meant more work than was originally anticipated, so the most sensible thing to do was to put it off for a year.”
Wheelchair dancing was first introduced back in 1968 in Sweden, but has in the two decades become famous throughout the world and is recognized by the International Paralympic Committee since 1998.