Nicky Byrne and his professional dance partner, Karen Hauer, danced their way in to the bottom two of last week’s Strictly Come Dancing, with a James Bond themed Argentine Tango that Craig Revel Horwood called “too aggressive and stompy” and that Len Goodman said was “lacking something.”
Facing his best friend in the competition in the dance off, Michael Vaughan, Westlife singer Nicky managed to win over all four judges with a unanimous vote to keep him in the competition and so lives to dance another day, but how did he feel about being in the bottom two, and how does he intend to keep from going there again?
Speaking to Zoe Ball on BBC2 Strictly Spin-off show, It Takes Two, the couple revealed all:
The Judges gave you negative comments last week, had you enjoyed your performance up until that point?
Nicky: “It genuinely was thrilling. We worked so hard all week the choreography was brilliant. You know you are playing James Bond, what guy doesn’t want to do that? I was all tuxed up, I felt a million dollars and I just went for it. You always feel at the end of a dance a good instinct and I thought ‘Yes, we’ve nailed that” then we went up to the judges, and we hadn’t.”
Karen: “It was fantastic. Seriously I thought I was dancing with my professional partner, the way that he was leading me was unbelievable I just let him take over and he was amazing, I am so proud of him.”
You were in the bottom two up against your best mate on the show, Michael Vaughan, how was that?
Nicky: “It doesn’t get any worse than that, does it really? But it is so tight now that if you are in the bottom two you are at risk, and I knew that as soon as I saw the scores, and everybody else’s, and then I was up against Vaughny, it was horrible but what can you do? That’s the nature of the show. He is still talking to me and I have the bragging rights.”
Do you think you were a bit under marked?
Karen: “Yes. I do. I respect the judges 100% but they definitely under-marked us.”
On Saturday we saw Karen get quite emotional because she was so proud of you, how did that feel?
Nicky: “I saw that just before we danced and I thought ‘wow, I must be doing something right.’”
Karen: “You are!”
Nicky: “No one wants to let their pro dancers down. We are nine or ten weeks in and we are working seven days a week to get it right, and in particular us two have wobbled a fair few times so we have had to try our best and work harder and harder . We really felt Saturday was great, and it really wasn’t, but we are not going to give up, that’s the main thing.”
Brand new challenge for you this week, Dance Fusion, which two styles have you decided to put together?
Nicky: “Originally we mixed up about four styles, but we are back to two now.”
Karen: “American Smooth and Samba.”
With your American smooth what will be the basis of it?
Karen: “It’s the foxtrot. It will have elements of Foxtrot in it.”
How is it going?
Which one are you starting with?
Nicky: “We are actually starting with the Samba because the Samba, traditionally for a guy celebrity is horrible, and you just have to work hard and do your best but it is horrible.”
How worried after being in the bottom two last week?
Nicky: “I don’t know if I am worried anymore, because when I think it is brilliant, it’s terrible, so maybe this time if it is terrible, it will be brilliant. We will just go for it.”
Do you think you can bounce back this week?
Nicky: “Well, look, we have to, don’t we? We have to just go for it. The positive thing is that the semi-final is one step away and the final is one step after that so you can’t lie down now. It doesn’t matter, last week has gone we have to keep fighting and if we are going to stay in the competition we need people to help us by voting, and we need the judges to help us as well.”
Watch Nicky and Karen’s Argentine Tango in the clip below:
Strictly Come Dancing: It Takes Two continues tonight at 6.30pm on BBC2/BBC2 HD.
Strictly Come Dancing continues on Saturday night at 6.50pm on BBC1/BBC1 HD.