CBBC star Rhys Stephenson on why he wants to show his ‘serious’ side on Strictly

The presenter will take to the dancefloor from September 18.

Rhys Stephenson
Rhys Stephenson

CBBC presenter Rhys Stephenson has said he hopes to show the more “serious” side of his personality on Strictly Come Dancing.

The 27-year-old is best known for hosting children’s programmes on the channel, often alongside the puppet Hacker T Dog.

However, he suggested his dance routines will still make use of his sense of humour.

Asked whether he will use his comedy in his performances, he said: “I hope so, but at the same time I really am looking forward to doing the serious stuff as well, almost kind of putting that aside and showing them another side of me.

“But to go on Strictly and completely ignore that would be ridiculous.

“CBBC is where I came from, that’s my home at the moment.

“So I obviously want to show that humour – humour is a big part of me.

“So I look forward to kind of bringing the energy, that’s always been my biggest strength with presenting and being on TV, and I think that’s what I’m going to take with me on to the dancefloor and hopefully it will see me through.”

Stephenson added that he is looking forward to performing more serious dance routines, like the Spanish paso doble.

“I can’t wait to kind of scare people. I want people to look and go ‘Oh, that’s a bit intense, I didn’t know Rhys could do that’,” he said.

“I’ll be in the mirror just practising that face, maybe I’ll start doing the Liam Neeson Taken line just to get me into the mode.

“I can’t wait to show that different side of me.”

Stephenson has presented some of the most popular shows on CBBC, including Blue Peter, Saturday Mash-Up! and the channel’s news show, Newsround.

His fellow CBBC presenter, Karim Zeroual, took part in the dance competition in 2019 and Stephenson said he had provided him with advice ahead of the show.

Stephenson said: “He was so excited because he kept telling me when he was doing it ‘Your time is going to come’ and I was like ‘Let’s calm down, this is your thing, let’s enjoy this’.

“But he was adamant and when it happened he had a bit of a smugness to him like ‘I told you so’.

“And he gave me a lot of great advice, just kind of how hard you’ve got to work, balancing between doing CBBC and doing Strictly, and he gave me some really good advice on managing my life whilst doing the show.”

– Strictly Come Dancing returns to BBC One on September 18.

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