September 29, 2008

Judges Tell EastEnder Gillian to Foxtrot Off

STRICTLY Come Dancing's judging panel told former EastEnders actress Gillian Taylforth to step out of the TV dance show last night.

A viewers' vote left Taylforth and partner Anton du Beke in the bottom two alongside former model Jodie Kidd and dance partner Ian Waite.

The couples were asked to perform their foxtrots again and the show's judges decided Kidd deserved to stay.

Taylforth, who played cafe owner Kathy Beale on the BBC soap opera, became the first female to leave the series.

She said: "I have really enjoyed myself, it's been great. Anton's wonderful.

Getting the boot in week two was also disappointing for du Beke, who lasted until week seven last year with partner, presenter Kate Garraway.

He has danced in every series - partnering opera singer Lesley Garrett, presenter Esther Rantzen, actress Patsy Palmer and comic Jan Ravens.

Strictly judge Bruno Tonioli told Taylforth: "Gillian, compared to his previous partners, you're Ginger Rogers and that is something."

Taylforth and du Beke received 22 points out of a possible 40 from the judges for their foxtrot.

The couples had to choose to dance either a foxtrot or a salsa.

Head judge Len Goodman said: "I was disappointed that two foxtrots were in the bottom two. It's such a difficult dance and doesn't have the wow factor of the salsa.

"But I just want to say that Gillian and Anton were stood on the steps clapping along and cheering for Jodie and Ian. It was great spirit."

The show's male stars, who last night performed as a group to the Ricky Martin song She Bangs, will face the judges and the public vote next week.

Actor Phil Daniels last week became the first male to leave the show.

Last night's Strictly Come Dancing was watched by slightly more people than Saturday's X Factor.

Viewer numbers peaked at 9.4million, while The X Factor got 9.3million.

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