Former Strictly Come Dancing judge says they quit after bosses' unreasonable demands

Former judge on BBC's Strictly Come Dancing, Darcey Bussell has revealed why she left the show. <i>(Image: PA)</i>
Former judge on BBC's Strictly Come Dancing, Darcey Bussell has revealed why she left the show. (Image: PA)

Former Strictly Come Dancing judge, Dame Darcey Bussell has revealed to fans the real reason she quit the BBC competition show.

The news comes after Dame Bussell left the show back in 2019 where she appeared on the panel for seven years before making a surprise exit.

But now, nearly five years since her departure, the former judge has shared why she decided it was time to make her exit on the show.

Dame Bussell shared that although she was hired for her dance knowledge, show bosses asked her to change her persona.

The Northern Echo:
The Northern Echo:

She told the Royal Academy of Dance podcast: "It was really hard because the producers on the show didn’t want me to be the ballet dancer and I was like: ‘Well, sadly I am, and I think you chose me because I am the ballet dancer'.

"They were convinced that the public was going to take that on board. But the public did take it on board and were happy to have me as a judge."

The former ballerina went on to say that she was always going to be herself, adding: "However much I was convinced that to look like and be like the ballet dancer wasn’t the right thing.

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“I was, like, ‘Well, sorry, you’re taking me as it is. This is how I look and this is how I’ll act’."

Speaking on the podcast, the Dame also shared that she felt she wasn't suited for the world of Strictly.

"It wasn’t the easiest thing for me, because I wanted to still be the dancer on that dancefloor.

"Being a judge full-time was hard, knowing that it’s live and having the ability to be quick and responsive, because I like to think and take my time."

When she left the BBC show back in 2010, the former judge said it had been a "complete privilege for me to be part of Strictly, working with such a talented team.

"I have enjoyed every minute of my time and will miss everyone from my fellow judges, the presenters, the dancers, the musicians, the entire backstage team, and especially the viewers of the show, who have been so supportive."