Lisa Armstrong 'shows support' for Giovanni Pernice after his statement on 'abuse' claims

Strictly Come Dancing's makeup maestro Lisa Armstrong has seemingly thrown her support behind professional dancer Giovanni Pernice following his denial of claims that he was "threatening or abusive" in training sessions with celebrity partner Amanda Abbington.

The Italian hoofer, who is rumoured to have stepped down from the BBC dance extravaganza with a pledge to vindicate himself after an internal probe, received a subtle nod of solidarity from Lisa - Ant McPartlin's former spouse - and the show's chief makeup artist as she liked a social media post where Giovanni addressed the allegations.

Amanda had allegedly confided to pals about Giovanni's "abrasive" approach during rehearsals, before bowing out of the contest for "medical reasons", reports the Mirror.

Giovanni Pernice has issued a statement in response to claims made by Amanda Abbington ( Image: PA) -Credit:PA
Giovanni Pernice has issued a statement in response to claims made by Amanda Abbington ( Image: PA) -Credit:PA

Now, Giovanni has publicly responded. On his social media, he penned: "To my dear fans, You will be as surprised as I am that allegations have been made about my dance teaching methods in the media this week.

"Of course, I reject any suggestion of abusive or threatening behaviour, and I look forward to clearing my name. Those who have followed my journey on Strictly Come Dancing over the last decade will know that I am passionate and competitive. No-one is more ambitious for my dance partners than me."

He added: "I have always striven to help them be the very best dancers they can be. This has always come from a place of love and wanting to win - for me and my dance partners. Thank you all once again for your continued love and support! Giovanni."

Giovanni Pernice, the Strictly Come Dancing sensation, has spoken out amid swirling rumours, telling The Sun that his actions have "come from a place of love and wanting to win".

Yet, sources have painted a different picture, alleging to The Sun that Amanda Abbington had a "terrible time" with Giovanni, describing his behaviour as "bullying and abrasive".

Lisa Armstrong was spotted among the many who showed support for the statement on Instagram.

Insiders allege that Amanda was often left "in tears" due to a breakdown in communication with Giovanni, despite her efforts to "try every avenue to try and make it work".

They claimed: "She desperately wanted it to work but invariably it would break down. An urgent medical condition eventually allowed her to quit."

The BBC has chosen not to comment on these allegations.

Meanwhile, The Mirror has attempted to reach out to Amanda Abbington's representatives for their input.

In the wake of rumours about Giovanni's departure from Strictly, the BBC clarified that the professional dancers for the 2024 series have not been confirmed, stating that the pro lineup will be revealed when appropriate.

A spokesperson for the BBC commented: "The Professional Dancers for Strictly Come Dancing 2024 will be announced in due course."

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