ENTERTAINMENT
17/07/2020 09:16 BST

Former Strictly Professional Ian Waite Throws Serious Shade At Bruno Tonioli's Judging Style

"I love Bruno for the entertainment value, but nothing else," he said.

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Bruno Tonioli’s involvement in the new series of Strictly Come Dancing may still be uncertain, but it appears there’s one person who wouldn’t miss seeing him on the panel. 

Former professional dancer Ian Waite has thrown some serious shade at the show’s most animated judge, claiming he never says “anything technical” in his critiques. 

Ian was a dancer on the BBC ballroom series between 2005 and 2009, and is now a regular on spin-off show It Takes Two. 

Tristan Fewings via Getty Images
Ian Waite

Speaking about rumours Bruno may not be able to return to the show later this year due to coronavirus travel restrictions in place, Ian told Fubar Radio’s Access All Areas: “Do you want the honest truth? I love Bruno for the entertainment value, but nothing else.

“He doesn’t really say anything technical. He’s not really the technician of the panel.

“It’s like, how many arms can I flail around and how expressive can I be?”

Last month, it was reported Bruno might not be able to fly between the US and UK each week to fulfil his judging roles on Strictly and America’s Dancing With The Stars as he usually does each year. 

PA
Bruno Tonioli 

Reports have suggested he has chosen to stick with the US version of the show, leaving an empty seat on the UK panel alongside Shirley Ballas, Motsi Mabuse and Craig Revel Horwood

During his Fubar Radio interview, Ian – who was paired with the likes of Zoe Ball and Denise Lewis on Strictly – also had a few remarks to make about the professional dancers, revealing he has been confronted by some of them in the past for critiquing their routines. 

“There are some pros who don’t like you saying anything against them, but they can stuff it,” he said. 

Refusing to name names Ian added: “Most of them are gone now!”

PA
Ian with former dance partner Denise Lewis on the show in 2005

After much speculation about whether Strictly will be able to go ahead this year while still adhering to social distancing guidelines, bosses confirmed last month that the show would be airing in 2020, though for a shorter time period than usual.

It was previously confirmed that bosses are considering isolating the cast of professional dancers and key production staff in a hotel together, so they can film the usual group routines. 

It has also been reported that the show will not be adding any new pros to the line up after the departures of Kevin Clifton and AJ Pritchard.

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