Former Strictly Come Dancing star Flavia Cacace has said the programme’s so-called Strictly curse only happens to people if they are not in a “happy place”.
Cacace appeared as a professional dancer on the series from 2006 until 2012, alongside her professional partner Vincent Simone, with whom she was previously in a long-term relationship.
Their 11-year romance came to an end in 2007 when Cacace embarked on a relationship with her Strictly partner Matt Di Angelo.
Asked about the Strictly curse, Cacace – now married to actor Jimi Mistry, another former Strictly partner – told Hello! magazine: “I’d love to say a witch cast a spell on it but it just isn’t true.
“People push themselves out of their comfort zones and do drastic things so that they can move on.
“They need something to punch them in the face and snap them out of their regular lives.”
She added: “If they were in a happy place, they wouldn’t let that happen.”
Strictly’s most recent example of the curse was in October, when comedian Seann Walsh was pictured kissing dance partner Katya Jones, who is married to fellow dancer Neil Jones.
Walsh’s girlfriend promptly dumped him following his actions.
Despite their romantic history, Cacace and Simone still work together, and are still close friends.
Cacace has offered for Simone to spend Christmas with her family if his wife and sons are unable to make it to London from their home in Northern Ireland.
She said: “If his family can’t make it over, we’re there for him.”
The pair are set to appear in the pantomime production of Snow White at the London Palladium this Christmas, alongside stars including Dawn French and Julian Clary.
However, Italian-born Simone has admitted to never having seen such a production.
He said: “You know, I’ve never seen a panto in my life.”
Hello! magazine is out now.