All the celebs who have fallen victim to Strictly Curse as new series returns
Strictly Come Dancing will return to our screens tonight (September 23) after the BBC delayed the show's launch due to the death of Queen Elizabeth II on September 8.
A brand new cast of 15 celebrities will be introduced to Strictly viewers tonight, including Paralympian Ellie Simmons, EastEnders star James Bye and TV presenter Helen Skelton.
However, away from the glitz and the glam of the BBC One dancing competition, the Strictly 'Curse' looms over the upcoming dancers.
The so-called curse has made headlines over the years as professional Strictly dancers and celebrities put their personal relationships to the test as they grow closer to their partners.
But which former Strictly stars have fallen victim to the dreaded Strictly Curse?
Here's a full list of all the celebs and professional dancers who have split from their partners while participating in Strictly Come Dancing.
Brendan Cole and Camilla Dallerup
Professional dancers Brendan Cole and Camilla Dallerup fell victim to the curse in 2004 following Brendan's partnership with former newsreader Natasha Kaplinsky on the show.
Camilla Dallerup blamed the BBC series for the end of her engagement to him in her book, Strictly Inspirational.
Responding to his ex's comments, Brendan said: "It's nothing really new to me. It was a long time ago, I'm happily married with a child, so is she, she's a married woman. I live now, not ten years ago."
Both Natasha and Brandan split from their respective partners following Strictly, with Natasha meeting her now-husband Justin Bower shortly after winning the first ever series of the BBC One competition.
Flavia Cacace and Vincent Simone
Strictly professional Flavia Cacace split up with her long-term boyfriend and fellow Strictly pro Vincent Simone in 2007 when she was partnered with EastEnders actor Matt Di Angelo.
However, Flavia and Matt's relationship did not last and they split in 2013 before she went on to marry fellow Strictly contestant Jimi Mistry.
Joe Calzaghe and Jo-Emma Larvin
Joe Calzaghe and ex-girlfriend Jo-Emma Larvin fell victim to the Strictly 'curse' after the former boxer was paired up with Kristina Rihanoff on the show in 2009.
Joe and Jo-Emma split in the summer of 2009 and the former boxer started dating the ballroom pro straight after.
However, four years later, the pair split up.
Kristina claimed at the time: "[Joe] found it difficult when I danced with other men."
Rachel Riley and Jamie Gilbert
Countdown host Rachel Riley took on the quickstep in the 2013 series of Strictly alongside professional Pasha Kovalev.
Her time on the show saw her relationship with husband Jamie Gilbert fizzle out as she was forced to deny romance rumours with her Strictly partner.
A year after their time on Strictly, Pasha and Rachel began a whirlwind romance, with Rachel later denying that her marriage had fallen foul to the Strictly Curse.
Rachel explained to the Telegraph: "I don't think there's a Strictly curse, but it does serve as a magnifying glass that shows up pre-existing fault lines."
Rachel and Pasha are now happily married and they have two daughters together – Maven and Noa.
Ben Cohen and Abby Blayney
On the same Strictly series in 2013, Ben was paired with Strictly pro Kristina and just a few months after the pair came eighth in the competition, Ben announced his split from wife Abby after 11 years together.
Two years after the couple met on the BBC show, Kristina confirmed she and Ben were in love and a "committed relationship".
In 2017, they welcomed their first daughter Milena into the world. However, Kristina has blasted the idea of a Strictly Curse.
She said in an interview with AndyVision:"It is bollocks, because the thing is, life happens.
"And it happens everywhere, it's just the difference is, that we watch the show and we watch these stories happening in front of our eyes on TV. But if you take any office, there are people who fall in love, who are divorcing, who are meeting at work – so what?"
Georgia May Foote and Sean Ward
Former Corrie star Georgia took part in the 2015 series of Strictly alongside pro partner Giovanni Pernice.
At the time, Georgia was in a relationship with Corrie co-star Sean Ward, but they split shortly after the final when Georgia came in second place alongside Giovanni.
Initially, Georgia and Giovanni denied dating rumours until they were pictured together on a friendly getaway after Strictly filming wrapped.
However, their fling was very short-lived as conflicting schedules got in the way of their budding romance.
Kevin Clifton and Karen Hauer
In March 2018, married Strictly pros Kevin and Karen announced their split after three years together.
The couple reportedly split due to Kevin’s close relationship with contestant Louise Redknapp during the 2017 series.
Shortly after the series concluded, Louise split with her husband of 18 years, Jamie Redknapp, who had become increasingly concerned about the impact Strictly was having on his relationship.
But she laughed off rumours that she and Kevin were anything other than friends, revealing after her divorce that Strictly had shed light on how unhappy she'd become at being a 'Stepford wife'.
"I wanted kids so much, I was happy to put everything on hold for them," she explained.
"Standing by and watching Jamie become this entertainment star was pretty hard.
"I was proud of him, but there was part of me thinking, 'that's my world'.
"I could see the excitement he got out of it and I knew how that felt. But it wasn't me feeling it anymore."
Stacey Dooley and Sam Tucknott
Stacey and Kevin Clifton were paired together during the 2018 series of Strictly.
At the time of filming, Stacey was in a long-term relationship with Sam Tucknott.
Stacey's ex went onto accuse the BBC journalist of having an affair with Kevin during her time on Strictly.
Sam told The Sun: “I have no respect for Kevin whatsoever. He comes out and says it’s all ‘strictly business’. He’s a full-on p***k. I’ve tried to meet him since to get closure but he won’t do it."
Stacey and Kevin then began dating after her split from Sam and the pair are now expecting their first child together.
Dianne Buswell and Anthony Quinlan
Dianne and YouTuber Joe Sugg were also paired together in the 2018 series.
At the time of filming, Dianne split from her partner of 10 months, Emmerdale star Anthony Quinlan, and when the Strictly finale aired, Dianne and Joe confirmed their relationship.
Dianne and Joe are still going strong today and the Strictly pro regularly features in her boyfriend's YouTube videos.
Neil and Katya Jones
The Strictly pros split after 11 years together in 2019, shortly after pictures of Katya snogging her Strictly partner Seann Walsh leaked.
Katya and Neil released a joint statement on the split, but they didn't specify their exact reason for the break-up.
The statement said: "Hi everyone. As our fans and loyal supporters you are really important to us and so we wanted to let you know some news. After 11 years we have made the mutual decision to separate.
"We will always love each other, just in a different way as friends. This will never change what a great team we make and we are really proud of everything we have achieved together."
However, an insider told The Sun: "The infidelity highlighted problems within the relationship and made it impossible for them to get back on track.
“They are determined not to let their split affect Strictly as it’s their main source of income.
"They’re being guided by how Kevin and Karen Clifton handled their split.”
Adam Peaty and Eirianedd Munro
Olympic swimmer Adam Peaty and girlfriend Eirianedd Munro almost fell victim to the Strictly Curse in 2021 after Adam nearly kissed partner Katya Jones at the end of their performance on the show.
However, Adam denied that he kissed his partner, claiming that it was just "gossip".
Following his Argentine Tango performance, Adam tweeted: “To everyone who wants to see what they want, your comments have real life consequences.
“I will not be overcome or lowered by your gossip. Protect your energy."
Adam and Eirianedd, who share a son together, split last month after three years together.
In a statement, Adam said "Eiri and I have decided to go our separate ways. We have enjoyed a wonderful three years together, two of those with our gorgeous son George.
“Our priority has always been to provide the happiest and healthiest home environment for him, and right now that means ending our romantic relationship.”
He concluded: "I could not ask for a greater mother for George and I am so grateful to Eiri for her amazing support over the last three years. Eiri and George, I’m sorry for letting you down."
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