'Strictly Come Dancing': Joanne Clifton And Oksana Platero Quit Show

And there are three new additions to the line-up.

Reigning ‘Strictly Come Dancing’ champion Joanne Clifton has stepped down from the show, ahead of this year’s series.

Joanne triumphed in last year’s live final, alongside celebrity partner Ore Oduba, but has decided not to return when ‘Strictly’ kicks off its 15th series later this year.

Joanne Clifton
Joanne Clifton
Mike Marsland via Getty Images

She said: “Being part of the Strictly experience has been one of the best things that has ever happened to me and I will miss the show so much.

“It’s been a tough decision but I am looking forward to facing new challenges and focusing on my musical theatre career.”

Joanne has been with ‘Strictly’ since 2014, but only competed in two series, remaining a member of the professional team in 2015 but not actually taking part in the contest.

She’ll perform one last time at the beginning of this year’s series, when she and Ore do the annual winner’s dance.

Oksana Platero has also revealed that she has left the show after just one series, during which she was partnered with Judge Rinder.

Oksana Platero
Oksana Platero
Karwai Tang via Getty Images

Thanking the show for the great “memories”, Oksana said: “I just want to say thank you to everyone involved with Strictly. Last year was my first season and I had an unforgettable time working alongside such amazing dancers and an even better time with Judge Rinder. It was an opportunity of a lifetime and I will never forget it.”

Natalie Lowe previously announced that she was quitting, with the trio being replaced by newcomers Dianne Buswell, Nadiya Bychkova and Amy Dowden.

Dianne hails from Australia originally, appearing on the most recent series of the Aussie version of the show, ‘Dancing With The Stars’.

Similarly, Nadiya has taken part in the Bosnian version of ‘Strictly’, while Amy is the current British National Champion in ballroom dance.

While Joanne has chosen to quit, her brother and sister-in-law, Kevin and Karen Clifton - are both sticking around for the next series.

The full list of ‘Strictly’ pros for the 2017 series is as follows:

  • AJ Pritchard
  • Aljaž Škorjanec
  • Amy Dowden
  • Anton du Beke
  • Brendan Cole
  • Chloe Hewitt
  • Dianne Buswell
  • Giovanni Pernice
  • Gorka Marquez
  • Janette Manrara
  • Karen Clifton
  • Katya Jones
  • Kevin Clifton
  • Nadiya Bychkova
  • Neil Jones
  • Oti Mabuse
  • Pasha Kovalev

Interestingly, this is the second time in a row that the reigning ‘Strictly’ pro has quit the show after their victory, with Aliona Vilani leaving shortly after she and Jay McGuiness triumphed.


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