Graham Clark, Music Features Writer

Strictly Come Dancing - The Live Tour

Up until last year Strictly Come Dancing had evaded me; but the colourful and often extravagant programme brightened up my dreary autumn nights with flamboyance, glitter and more than a touch of glam - I became hooked.

The current tour is so popular that the extravaganza is playing in arenas across the country with a demand that requires, in many instances, consecutive nights at certain venues.

As the lights dimmed at the Leeds Arena it felt like I was right in the centre of the action on a Saturday night.

Whether the comments of the three judges were scripted or not might have been debatable though their personalities contrasted well with each other. Like the pantomime villain Craig Revel Horwood had some seething comments: “Come on Leeds, if you lot can’t boo properly then don’t bother,” he attested following one of his usual less than complimentary comments about a dance routine.

Anton Du Beke, was as charming as ever whilst Shirley Ballas presided with an air of grace and style with her warm and comforting manner.

Like being the greatest hits of Strictly the seven finalists in the show replicated their dance routines that included the Charleston (Tyler and Dianne), Quickstep (Molly and Carlos) Jive (Will and Nancy), Waltz (Ellie and Nikita), Samba (Fleur and Vito).

With the audience being able to vote for the best performance of the night via their mobile phone the eventual winner of the Strictly Live Glitterball was Helen and Kai who dazzled with their stunning Cabaret dance routine whilst Hamza and Jowita had to contend with being one of the runner ups.

Set against a backdrop of music from the likes of KC and the Sunshine Band, Beyoncé and Destiny’s Child amongst others all performed by four excellent singers and the house band, there was nothing not to like.

With style, grace, elegance and joyful routines it was a feast of pure, clean and fun entertainment - in the words of Craig Revel Horwood Strictly Come Dancing Live was truly Fab-u-lous on a night where not a single step was out of place.

The tour continues 1-2 February - Newcastle Arena