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Aljaz Skorjanec praises Strictly bosses’ response to pandemic

Janette Manrara and Aljaz Skorjanec (Hello! magazine/PA)
Janette Manrara and Aljaz Skorjanec (Hello! magazine/PA)

Strictly Come Dancing star Aljaz Skorjanec has said the show’s producers have handled the challenges of the coronavirus pandemic “incredibly well”.

The professional dancer said he was sure they would find the best way forward for the BBC show, and its cast and crew.

In a joint interview with his wife Janette Manrara, he told Hello! magazine: “We can’t wait to get back on the Strictly floor.

BBC Proms
Aljaz Skorjanec and Janette Manrara on stage together (Mark Allan/BBC/PA)

“We really hope the season is going to move forward because we all love doing it.

“Everything that has been thrown at the producers so far has been handled so incredibly well so I’m sure that they’re going to find a way that’s best for the show and the individuals doing it.”

Strictly is due to return to screens in autumn.

Manrara said: “We have always felt lucky and blessed to get to do what we love together.

“It really is a dream to dance with someone you love and I have the ideal partner in Aljaz, especially in these strange circumstances.”

Strictly Come Dancing Launch 2019 – London
Janette Manrara (Ian West/PA)

Manrara, 36, and Skorjanec, 30, married in 2017 in three ceremonies in London, Miami and Skorjanec’s native Slovenia.

They also used the magazine interview to discuss how their relationship had changed during lockdown.

Manrara said: “Our normality is travelling and staying in hotels and moving around at million miles an hour, so for us to have the opportunity to spend time at home, cooking and watching movies has been so nice.

“We spend a lot of time together anyway, but we are always working.

“In lockdown we have been able to reconnect again just as Aljaz and Janette – not the dancers but the human beings – and it kind of reminded us why we fell in love in the first place.”

Skorjanec added: “We have used the kitchen more in the past couple of months than we have in the entire eight years we have lived in London and I have even bought my first barbecue.

“I’m really enjoying making burgers outside and Janette has found a new love for cooking.”

Read the full interview in Hello!, out now.

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