Strictly Come Dancing: Final draws 11.3 million viewers


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Media captionWatch the moment the Strictly Come Dancing 2019 winner was announced

The final of this year’s Strictly Come Dancing, which saw former Emmerdale actor Kelvin Fletcher lift the glitterball trophy, was watched by an average of 11.3 million people.

Kelvin and partner Oti Mabuse topped a public vote to win the BBC One show.

Overnight ratings show the Saturday night programme had a peak audience of 12.5 million viewers, and was the most-watched show across all channels.

Kelvin only joined the programme after another contestant suffered an injury.

Drafted in as a last-minute replacement, he replaced Made In Chelsea star Jamie Laing who injured his foot while recording the launch show.

After scooping the prize, Kelvin said: “I am absolutely speechless. I did not expect that, it’s just been such a privilege to be here.”

Breaking down in tears, he said: “I think this show represents everything that is amazing with this country. I think the people personify what is great and it’s just been an absolute privilege.”

Kelvin left his role as Andy Sugden in the long-running ITV soap, which he had played for two decades, three years ago.

Saturday night’s show saw him triumph over Karim Zeroual, the CBBC presenter, and his dance partner Amy Dowden; and EastEnders actress Emma Barton, who was paired with Anton Du Beke.

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Guy Levy/BBC

The couples all performed three dances – a judges’ pick dance, their own favourite routine from the series and a new showdance.

Although Kelvin and Mabuse came second on the judges’ scoring, only the public vote counted in the final.

The couple began their routines with a sensual rumba to Ain’t No Sunshine by Bill Withers for which they scored 39 points, followed by a perfect-score showdance to Shout by The Isley Brothers.

Judge Bruno Tonioli said their showdance was “almost like watching 13 weeks of all the best of Strictly Come Dancing condensed into one dance”.

Mabuse’s sister and fellow judge Motsi Mabuse, who joined the panel this year, said: “I have no words…”

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Guy Levy/BBC

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‘You just put the show in showdance,’ said presenter Tess Daly

For their final dance, they revisited their samba to La Vida Es Un Carnaval by Celia Cruz, which they performed in week one.

Judge Shirley Ballas said to Kelvin: “Which part of that body doesn’t move? Fantastic, congratulations, I have no words, you’ve left me speechless.” He scored 39 for the second time of the night.

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Guy Levy/BBC

It is also the first time Mabuse has lifted the trophy.

Speaking through tears, she said: “I’ve been on this show for five years and I have never ever met any celeb who gives his heart, his soul…

“If something is not working we stay in training and rehearse, not because he wanted to win but because he genuinely, genuinely loves dancing, and for me that is the best gift and the best ending to my year, so thank you.”

Saturday’s viewing figures made Strictly one of the most watched TV programmes of the year. But they were a slight fall on last year’s Strictly final, which attracted an average audience of 11.7 million and a peak of 12.7 million when Stacey Dooley and Kevin Clifton won.

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Guy Levy/BBC

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CBBC presenter Karim and his partner Amy performed the quickstep to Mr Pinstripe Suit and topped the judges’ leaderboard

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Guy Levy/BBC

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Emma and Anton opened with the Charleston to Thoroughly Modern Millie – Tonioli told Emma that she was his “favourite flapper ever”


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