Kym Marsh has denied she received training from former Strictly Come Dancing judge Arlene Phillips after it was claimed her past dance experience in the ex panellist’s hit West End show Saturday Night Fever could put her at an unfair advantage in the TBEN competition.
It was claimed Kym, 46, was tutored by twinkle-toed star Arlene, 79 – who appeared as a Strictly judge from 2004 to 2009 – during her run as Annette in the revival of West End musical Saturday Night Fever from 2004 to 2006 before going on a UK tour with the production.
However, a source told TBEN: ‘Eighteen years ago in 2004 Kym appeared in the West End musical musical Saturday Night Fever where she played the role of Annette for six months.
Born to perform: Kym Marsh, 46, has denied she had training from former Strictly judge Arlene Phillips following claims her experience could put her at an advantage on the show
‘Arlene Philips was the show’s director but did not give the cast dance training. There was a choreographer who worked with the cast.
‘Kym’s character, Annette, only had a couple of very small choreographed dance routines which Kym has always been very open about.’
The former Hear’Say singer, who found fame with the band after they were formed on ITV television show Popstars in 2001, has also downplayed her dance experience with the chart act, saying she was just ‘faffing about’ on stage during the group’s dance routines, adding to new! magazine that she’s ‘got all the posture and grace of a Quaver’.
Looking back: It was claimed Kym was tutored by twinkle-toed star Arlene, 79, during her run as Annette in the revival of West End musical Saturday Night Fever from 2004 to 2006 (Arlene pictured in July)
When asked if she was an experienced dancer, Kym recently told new!: ‘Well, not really. We’re talking 20 years ago, faffing about on stage in Hear’Say.
‘It’s a whole different thing, and even if that did count as experience in dance, this is ballroom. I’ve got all the posture and grace of a Quaver.’
But current show judge Craig Revel Horwood, 57, is of a different opinion, saying in a recent interview with best magazine: ‘Kym Marsh has danced before and I think she’ll fit in well.’
Speaking out: A source told TBEN Kym did not receive training from Arlene and her character only had a small number of choreographed routines (pictured in Saturday Night Fever in 2004)
Making moves: Kym starred as Anette in Saturday Night Fever in the West End revival between 2004 and 2006 before going on a UK tour after leaving Hear’Say (pictured in Saturday Night Fever in 2004)
Speaking out: When asked if she was an experienced dancer, Kym recently told new!: ‘Well, not really. We’re talking 20 years ago, faffing about on stage in Hear’Say’ (pictured in Saturday Night Fever in 2004)
It comes after Kym expressed her gratitude at being asked to appear on Strictly Come Dancing this year after her father David was diagnosed with incurable cancer.
The television presenter is glad her parent will be able to watch her perform on the TBEN ballroom dance contest, which starts this week, after he was given the go ahead to start treatment.
She told The Sun: ‘Since he was diagnosed last March I’ve just decided to grab everything while I can.
‘Without being melancholy, we don’t know how long we’ve got him for, so you’ve got to make the best of these situations.
‘My dad’s diagnosis does change things. He’s been telling me for years, ”You never know what’s around the corner, so grab things with both hands.”
‘But you don’t think about that until an event happens. It makes you look at things differently.’
Family affair: It comes after Kym said she’s glad her father will be able to watch her perform on the show, which starts next week, after he was diagnosed with cancer (Kym pictured with David and her mother Pauline)
Actress Kym revealed in June last year that her father Dave, 77, had been diagnosed with incurable prostate cancer last year after delaying going to a doctor during lockdown.
At the time, he was using a mobility scooter and the disease had spread to his pelvis, spine, ribs and left leg.
Kym married Army Major Scott Ratcliff in October last year and he will also be able to watch her perform from a seat in the audience.
Back to her reality TV roots: Kym is also delighted to have been asked to appear on Strictly for the experience – 22 years after she rose to fame on reality show Popstars (pictured on Popstars in 2001. L-R Liberty X star Jessica Taylor, Kym and Kym’s former Hear’Say co-star Suzanne Shaw)
Fame game: Kym found chart success with Hear’Say (Top row L-R: Myleene Klass, Suzanne Shaw and Kym. Bottom row L-R: Danny Foster and Noel Sullivan pictured in 2001)
Meanwhile, Kym is also delighted to have been asked to appear on Strictly for the experience – 22 years after she rose to fame on reality show Popstars before winning a place in band Hear’Say.
She said the TBEN had approached her on a number of occasions to take part in previous years.
And, while she admits it feels like her reality television roots, she is looking forward to the challenge of learning the routines.
Screen star: She said the TBEN had approached her on a number of occasions to take part in Strictly in previous years (Kym seen as Michelle Connor in Coronation Street in 2017)
The former Coronation Street cast member revealed her father had been diagnosed with cancer in June last year when she reflected on the tough diagnosis to The Sun.
Kym praised her ‘close’ family for helping each other through the awful news but admitted: ‘It has been a very difficult time…
‘The reality is that in Dad’s case it has now spread to his pelvis, spine, ribs and left leg, which is of course bad news.
Loved-up: Kym married Army Major Scott Ratcliff in October last year and he will also be able to watch her perform from a seat in the audience
Dave, who admitted he had ‘ignored’ having pain for some time, added that his wish to walk newly-engaged Kym down the aisle is giving him the strength to keep going.
He said: ‘I want to be fit and well enough to walk Kym down the aisle after she recently got engaged… making sure I’m there means the world to me.’
Kym continued to emphasise that it’s important to catch cancer early so there’s less chance it’ll spread.
The actress and her father, who is now using a mobility scooter, encouraged others to get checked, especially after lockdown when many didn’t want to go a doctors.
Kym and Dave told the publication that although they can never know for certain if things could have been different, they do know that ‘speed is crucial’ with cancer.
WHAT IS PROSTATE CANCER?
How many people does it kill?
More than 11,800 men a year – or one every 45 minutes – are killed by the disease in Britain, compared with about 11,400 women dying of breast cancer.
It means prostate cancer is behind only lung and bowel in terms of how many people it kills in Britain.
In the US, the disease kills 26,000 men each year.
Despite this, it receives less than half the research funding of breast cancer and treatments for the disease are trailing at least a decade behind.
How many men are diagnosed annually?
Every year, upwards of 52,300 men are diagnosed with prostate cancer in the UK – more than 140 every day.
How quickly does it develop?
Prostate cancer usually develops slowly, so there may be no signs someone has it for many years, according to the NHS.
If the cancer is at an early stage and not causing symptoms, a policy of ‘watchful waiting’ or ‘active surveillance’ may be adopted.
Some patients can be cured if the disease is treated in the early stages.
But if it diagnosed at a later stage, when it has spread, then it becomes terminal and treatment revolves around relieving symptoms.
Thousands of men are put off seeking a diagnosis because of the known side effects from treatment, including erectile dysfunction.
Tests and treatment
Tests for prostate cancer are haphazard, with accurate tools only just beginning to emerge.
There is no national prostate screening programme as for years the tests have been too inaccurate.
Doctors struggle to distinguish between aggressive and less serious tumours, making it hard to decide on treatment.
Men over 50 are eligible for a ‘PSA’ blood test which gives doctors a rough idea of whether a patient is at risk.
But it is unreliable. Patients who get a positive result are usually given a biopsy which is also not foolproof.
Scientists are unsure as to what causes prostate cancer, but age, obesity and a lack of exercise are known risks.
Anyone with any concerns can speak to Prostate Cancer UK’s specialist nurses on 0800 074 8383 or visit prostatecanceruk.org
STRICTLY COME DANCING 2022: WHO ARE THE CONTESTANTS?
Profession: Coronation Street star and presenter
Kym says: ‘I’m so delighted that this year they have! I’m a huge fan of the show and can’t believe I’m going to go from watching at home in my pyjamas to actually dancing in front of the judges in a glittery dress.’
Profession: Radio presenter
Richie says: ‘This is a dream come true! I cannot wait to get in those sparkles and sequins and shimmy across the most famous dance floor in the world!’
Profession: Former athlete
Ellie says: ‘To be asked to be part of the Strictly family is just so exciting and I cannot wait, it’s going to so much fun.’
Profession: Radio DJ
Tyler says: ‘It’s a show that means so much to me and my family and I can’t wait to seriously shake a leg on that shiny dance floor… with a side of sequins.’
Ellie says: ‘Well, cover me in fake tan and roll me in sequins! I’m absolutely over the moon to be a part of Strictly 2022!’
TONY ADAMS MBE
Profession: Retired footballer and manager
Tony says: ‘To say I’m excited is an understatement – the lure of the sequins and the call of the salsa has me swapping my battered old football boots for a set of Strictly soft shoes’
Profession: EastEnders actor
James says ‘I’m not known for my shimmy or my twinkle toes – in fact my kids regularly laugh at my dad dancing but it’s an honour to be asked and I’m going to give it my best shot.’
Profession: TV and radio broadcaster
Helen says: ‘I’m really excited to get stuck into a fun adventure. My family and friends have always loved the show and can’t wait for me to get started’
Will says: ‘I know it will be a huge challenge but that’s what life is all about. This is also my Mum’s favourite show and she’s had a really tough few years so I’m doing this is for her as well. Bring it on!’
Profession: Television presenter
Kaye says: ‘I said I wanted to make the last year of my fifties memorable and i can’t think of a better way of doing it than showing the world my two left feet. Pray for me!’
Jayde says: ‘I’ve been a massive fan of the show for years. I feel like I’m watching myself in a dream and I can’t believe I’ve manifested this.’
Matt says: ‘I’ve been reclusive, I come and work and then go back to America. I thought, it’s time for me to come home and get out of my own way’
Molly says: ‘I already know it’s gonna be an experience of a lifetime and I can’t wait to meet the rest of the Strictly family I’ll be sharing it with.’
Fleur says: ‘I’m equally nervous and thrilled to be part of this year’s Strictly line up. I’m excited to learn new skills and I want to soak up every moment of this magical experience.’
Profession: Wildlife cameraman and presenter
Hamza says: ‘I am absolutely over the moon to be joining Strictly 2022. Never in a million years did I think I’d be on such a cool show.’