Dancing on Ice winner Sonny Jay didn’t want to do Popeye routine

sonny jay attends the capital jingle bell ball in 2022
DOI's Sonny Jay didn’t want to do Popeye routineShane Anthony Sinclair - Getty Images

Dancing on Ice winner Sonny Jay has revealed he initially wasn't keen on portraying Popeye the Sailor Man in his famous skating routine.

The radio presenter won the 2021 series of Dancing of Ice with partner Angela Egan, fighting off competition from finalists Coronation Street star Faye Brookes and retired Olympic sprinter Colin Jackson.

Sonny first appeared as Popeye in a routine with Angela during Love Stories week on the show.

He then chose to re-perform the skating number in the live final, which impressed judges and earned the couple a perfect score of 40 out of 40.

sonny jay attends the capital jingle bell ball in 2022
Shane Anthony Sinclair - Getty Images

Related: Dancing on Ice winner wants to co-host with Holly Willoughby

In an exclusive interview with Digital Spy, the DJ recalled how he originally didn't want to do the routine at all.

"I can't remember what week it was, but they basically said you’re going to be Popeye and I was like, 'Ahhh, I'm going to be taken as a joke here'," he said.

"I remember really not wanting to do it and one of the production runners was like, 'Just stick with it. If you don’t like it, we'll change it'."

Related: Dancing on Ice final reveals 2023 winners

"And I was like 'Fine, alright, cool', and I stuck with it and throughout the week I was going, 'I actually really like this now'," he said with a laugh.

Sonny added that the routine to this day is the one that Dancing on Ice fans still stop and ask him about when they spot him in public.

"Didn't even remember my Bolero which I think is quite rude actually," he jokes. "But yeah, it's always the Popeye number."

sonny jay, dancing on ice

Related: Marvin Humes being replaced by Dancing On Ice winner Sonny Jay on radio show

The DJ revealed why he chose to bring the Popeye routine (set to singer Nathan Evans' 'Wellerman (Sea Shanty)') for the final.

"Actually I remember when it got to the point where I knew I was going to be in the final, there were other people doing really serious numbers," he told us.

"I think Faye [Brookes] did like a Black Swan number that was beautiful. I think the week before, or two weeks before, she got all tens for it, and I was thinking I better pull a number out here."

dancing on ice 2021 sonny jay

"But then I thought, 'No, let’s just go back to Popeye'," he said, adding that the reason was because "everyone loved it so much".

"I just thought how funny would it be to do a Popeye number in the final? I think that's what I loved about it so much and that's why I brought it back."

Sonny also admitted that he's only been back on the ice once since his big win, but it wasn't successful.

"The reason why I've only been once is because the one time I did go was at Christmas just gone. I stepped foot on the ice, and it was almost like everyone looked at me and said, 'How did he win Dancing on Ice?'," he laughed.

"I was on my bum more than other people."

Dancing on Ice will return to ITV1 and ITVX in early 2024.

You Might Also Like