Bruno Tonioli Set To Stage Return-Of-Sorts To Strictly Come Dancing

The long-standing judge has been forced to sit out the current series and has been replaced by Anton Du Beke.
Bruno Tonioli
Bruno Tonioli
Christopher Willard via Getty Images

Bruno Tonioli may be a notable absentee from the current series of Strictly Come Dancing, but he is dipping his toe back into the ballroom in the coming months.

The long-standing judge has announced he will be rejoining Shirley Ballas and Craig Revel Horwood for next year’s Strictly arena tour.

Bruno has had to sit out the last two series of Strictly due to travel restrictions, as he also judges the US version of the show, and has been replaced by professional dancer Anton Du Beke.

Speaking of his return to the judging panel for the 2022 tour, Bruno said: “I am absolutely delighted to be back on the judging panel for the Strictly Arena Tour for the first time in two years.

“I’ve missed my fellow judges, I’ve missed the glitz and glamour of the tour and I’ve missed the amazing audiences that come to see us all over the country – I hope you have missed me too.

“I cannot wait to be back alongside Shirley, Craig, the celebs and the pros.

“The fans are really in for a treat – next year’s arena tour is going to be simply fantastico.”

Bruno will reunite with Craig Revel Horwood and Shirley Ballas for the 2022 Strictly arena tour
Bruno will reunite with Craig Revel Horwood and Shirley Ballas for the 2022 Strictly arena tour
Dave J Hogan via Getty Images

Speaking on The One Show, Bruno added he “cannot believe” he will be returning to the UK for the tour.

He said the tour will be “amazing”, adding: “I’m going actually to see these new people that I haven’t met yet for the first time, so it’s even more exciting.”

Anton and fellow series judge Motsi Mabuse will not be on the panel for the tour, which will also be directed by Craig.

The tour takes place in January and February and will travel to Birmingham, Leeds, Newcastle, Manchester, Sheffield, Liverpool, Glasgow, Nottingham and London.

It was recently reported Anton would step down from the TV judging panel should Bruno be able to return to the show full-time next year. However, this has not been confirmed by the BBC.

Bruno previously admitted he would not be watching the current series of Strictly – which features contestants AJ Odudu and John Whaite – as it would be “weird” and “like watching an ex with someone new”.

Strictly Come Dancing continues on Saturday at 7.05pm on BBC One.

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