'Strictly' star Fleur East allowed to restart dance-off routine after 'incident with a prop'

Fleur East and Vito Coppola won the dance off. (BBC)
Fleur East and Vito Coppola won the dance-off. (BBC)

Fleur East was allowed to start her Strictly Come Dancing dance-off performance again after a prop mishap, it has emerged.

The former X Factor star and her pro partner Vito Coppola went up against EastEnders actor James Bye and his partner Amy Dowden in the dance-off this weekend, after ending up in the bottom two.

East, 35, ended up triumphing and went through to next week while Bye was handed his marching orders in the results show, which was pre-recorded.

Read more: Will Mellor rules out other reality shows after Strictly

The Sun reported that East was meant to pull Coppola along in a prop chair and that the legs slipped and she fell.

She was then allowed to re-start.

Fleur East survived the dance-off. (BBC)
Fleur East survived the dance-off. (BBC)

The BBC said the restart had been permitted because the pair had “not begun to dance” before the incident occurred.

In a statement shared with the PA news agency, a BBC spokesperson said the show had been stopped “as a matter of urgency”.

“After an incident with a prop at the beginning of Fleur and Vito’s dance-off performance, the decision was made to halt proceedings to check they were not injured, as a matter of urgency,” the spokesperson said.

“As they had not begun to dance before the incident occurred, it was decided they could start the performance again, once it was confirmed they were fit to do so.”

James Bye told Tess Daly he'd made a friend for life in Amy Dowden. (BBC)
Actor James Bye was sent home. (BBC)

After East and Bye danced again judges Motsi Mabuse, Craig Revel Horwood, Shirley Ballas and Anton Du Beke got to deliver their critiques and verdicts.

Mabuse said there were “different levels of dancing on the dancefloor”.

And Revel Horwood said it was his “responsibility” as a judge to “save the better dancer”.

Programme Name: Strictly Come Dancing 2021 - TX: 18/09/2021 - Episode: Strictly Come Dancing - Launch Show (No. n/a) - Picture Shows:  Craig Revel Horwood, Motsi Mabuse, Shirley Ballas, Anton Du Beke - (C) BBC - Photographer: Guy Levy
The judges all chose to save Fleur East. (BBC)

In the end all four chose to save East and Coppola.

Read more: Tony Adams apologises for heckling Shirley Ballas

Strictly returns on Saturday at 7pm, with the results show on Sunday at 7:15pm on BBC One.

Additional reporting from PA.

Watch: Fleur East 'redoes' dance performance on Strictly after falling on partner Vito Coppola