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Strictly’s kiss scandal couple Seann and Katya serve up routine with a big slice of bravado to win judges’ support

Katya and Seann perform their routine (Guy Levy / BBC)
Katya and Seann perform their routine (Guy Levy / BBC)

STRICTLY couple Seann Walsh and Katya Jones hit the floor last night for the first time since their drunken kiss threw the show into turmoil.

But the couple seemed to shrug off the controversy and impressed the judges with a pizza-based
routine predicted to be a “dance of shame” after a turbulent week when they were photographed kissing in the street and faced the humiliating fall-out.

There were calls for them to be booted off the BBC show after they fell foul of the so-called Strictly curse which blights the relationships of contestants.

Mr Walsh was dumped by his girlfriend of five years Rebecca Humphries after a picture of him kissing Mrs Jones in the street emerged last week.

The comedian’s dance partner, who is married to fellow dancer Neil Jones, tweeted an apology saying her actions were “a one-off mistake after some drinks.”

Many were predicting last night’s show would be humiliating for the pair and likely lead to them being voted off tonight.

But the defiant couple put on a gutsy Italian restaurant-themed Charleston to Bills by LunchMoney Lewis.

Presenters Tess Daly and Claudia Winkleman had opened the show saying: “The contestants have been eating, sleeping and breathing dance… other than that, it’s been a quiet week, other than the odd headline.”

And, later, before their dance, Tess said: “It’s been quite a week, but tonight is all about the dancing.”

Seann and Katya on the show last night

The judges, however, made no reference to the controversy on-screen despite speaking out during the week.

Judge Craig Revel Horwood had said he wanted to see them “face the music” by dancing again – and laid the blame firmly with Mrs Jones as the professional of the pair.

He told The Jonathan Ross Show: “My take was keep them in the show, make them do the Dance of Shame, if you like.”

In another interview, he predicted the couple would find it “tough” to step out to perform the Charleston, which was a substitute for their planned Rumba.

Mr Horwood said: “That’s where the awkward part of this whole scenario lies, as they’re the ones who have to face the music.

“They have to go on and do the dance of shame. It’s like going to a Christmas party and you snog the boss. You still have to come to work on Monday if you want the job.

“People talk about the Strictly Curse, but this happens in every profession. Yes, when you’re dancing you’re up close and personal for eight hours a day and you get used to being tactile – to holding hands, hugging, kissing – but it’s acting.”

Dancing second last, the couple finished their routine last night with Katya running up Walsh’s back, standing on his shoulders and jumping to the floor.

Judge Bruno Tonioli said: “You were giving it extra-large with extra toppings. You threw everything at it but the kitchen sink. It was manic but manic in a good way.”

Scoring them a total of 28, putting them mid-table, all the judges praised the dance and
choreography, with Shirley Ballas joking over a shaky lift:  “You deserve an extra point, Sean, for saving that!”

When presenter Claudia Winkleman praised his lifts, Walsh confessed: “They’re the easiest bit. I struggle with breathing when I’m, dancing because I’m panicking about doing it right.”

Darcey Bussell also dismissed the idea of the Strictly curse when the judges appeared together on the Jonathan Ross show.  She said: “I danced for over 20 years in the Royal Ballet and I’m still happily married.”

The Strictly results will be revealed tonight on a show starring the Backstreet Boys.

Contestant Katie Piper was given extra security ahead of last night’s show after the man who carried out an acid attack on her was freed from prison.