Fans have been waiting a long time to see a same-sex male dance pair on Strictly Come Dancing, and we were not disappointed!
Earlier this month, Strictly Come Dancing (the British equivalent of Dancing with the Stars) announced that Great British Bake Off winner John Whaite and professional dancer Johannes Radebe would be the first all-male same-sex couple to dance on the show. Now, we’ve seen what the two of them can do!
Whaite and Radebe danced the tango to New Order’s song “Blue Monday,” wowing judges Motsi Mabuse and Shirley Ballas, who gave the couple a standing ovation and a score of 30 points, making them the second highest scoring couple of the night!
The judges were effusive with their praise for the couple, specifically pointing out how the couple switched between who was leading throughout the routine.
“I don’t think you need to be nervous after a dance like that,” Mabuse said to the nervous-looking pair. “Such a superb start to this show – you guys keep going like that.”
“I feel like this is a testimony to the same sex couple,” Ballas added. “Absolutely brilliant. To go from leader to being led is so hard. Beautiful choreography.”
Whaite himself was also quick to praise his partner, posting a picture of the two of them on Instagram and saying, “seeing this guy’s reaction to our dance tonight made every single ache and pain worth it. @JohannesRadebe you are a king.”
He also made sure to thank everyone who helped him get to the historic point, posting a video where he thanked the makeup team, production team, orchestra, the camera people, lighting and sound people, and everyone else who helped make it happen.
“Huge respect to everyone behind the scenes too, who make Strictly what it is…” he wrote. “You’re probably not surprised by the sheer number of people it takes to make this fabulous bit of show-business that we watch in our homes. Cheers to every one.”
Last year, Strictly Come Dancing had its first same-sex couple when Olympic boxer Nicola Adams was partnered with Katya Jones, but they only lasted one episode, as Jones got sick and could no longer participate.
The U.S. version of the show is also breaking same-sex dancing ground this season, with JoJo Siwa becoming the first woman to have a female dance partner on the show. She and her partner, Jenna Johnson earned the highest score of the night on the season premiere of the show.