Strictly stars Anton and Giovanni to hit Reading: Interview
BRACE yourself for an entertaining night out. BBC Strictly Come Dancing stars Anton Du Beke and Giovanni Pernice are bringing their show - Him and Me! to The Hexagon, Reading on Thursday, July 22 (7:30pm).
The Strictly fan favourites will be joined by a world class cast of dancers and singers, in a dance extravaganza for all ages, produced by Strictly Theatre Co and directed by West End star Alan Burkitt.
Here’s what the guys said:
We are looking forward to welcoming you to Reading
A - Lovely Reading! That’s near me. It’s my home theatre, almost!
G - Is it?
A - Just down the road. We are looking forward to coming to Reading enormously!
G - See you there!
How did the idea come around to do a tour together?
G - I had an idea that I would love to do a tour with my idol!! I know Anton is such a busy man, so we have been back and forth for a couple of years. We finally got the dates to line up and we now get do the most phenomenal, beautiful and fun show touring around the country.
A - I can only agree, he says it so beautifully. I’m so fond of him.
What has it been like putting a tour together during a global pandemic?
A - It’s actually still been fun as we have had a load of great zoom calls putting it all together. In ‘normal’ times, there isn’t actually much time, so we have taken our time to put it together.
Alan, our director, has some brilliant ideas, and now the problem is ‘What do we leave out of the show?’ We cannot wait to get into the studio for rehearsals.
What have you both been doing through the lockdowns?
G - We have both been working out to give the people what they want!!! (Anton laughs).
A - You look tremendous by the way!
What makes this tour different to all the others?
G - The fact that you have a legend on stage, and also, a rising star legend is something special!
A - A rising star legend? We should have called the show that!
G - Plus, we are very different in terms of dance styles…
A - And age!! It’s wonderful for me as I love his enthusiasm. So, in that respect, we are very similar. He’s a wonderful person and I love spending time with him. He’s a wonderful dancer and an absolute stage presence. So, I cannot wait.
G - It’s going to be amazing.
Giovanni, what was the best advice Anton gave you when you started Strictly Come Dancing?
G - He said to always keep your feet on the ground. Everyone is replaceable, so enjoy, but stay grounded and don’t become a diva!
A - Then he didn’t do any of it!!!
G - Well, I didn’t speak English at the time, so I didn’t understand any of it!!
Anton, what has Giovanni been like to work with for all these years?
A - He has been the best, the loveliest. He loves the show Strictly Come Dancing and he understands the show is about his celebrity partner. He’s so generous to them and he gets the best out of them, which is why he has done so well over the years. Made so many finals… which I’m not jealous about at all!!!
G - Well you are almost there, you have made two finals!!
A - But I’ve had a few more goes at it than you!!
Anton, what English dish would you suggest Giovanni tries?
A - Something deep fried!!
G - I have tried bangers and the smash!
A - You mean ‘bangers and mash’?
G - Yes! And toad in the hole!
After nearly a year and a half with no live theatre, what will it feel like being back on a stage performing to your fans?
G - It will be amazing and special.
A - Just being in the room for the auditions has been great, so much energy, and so much talent. The cast are all excited.
Who would you pick as an ideal dance partner on Strictly for one another, and why?
G - I have a good one for you… Mary Berry.
A - We would be the cherry on the cake!
G - I like what you did there!!
A - Who would I pick for Giovanni?? If it was a same sex partner… Luke Evans!! Or, I know who would be great… Holly Willoughby!!
G - I would love to dance with Holly Willoughby on the show. We would have so much fun and she would do amazing.