AJ Pritchard says he wanted to take part in Strictly Come Dancing’s first ever same-sex couple.
The 25-year-old left the beloved BBC series earlier this year to pursue a career in presenting, but said in a recent interview that he would’ve loved the chance to dance with a male partner.
“I’d have definitely been up for it,” he revealed. “It’s probably one of the most important things the show has done. I’m intrigued to see how the choreography works.”
AJ continued: “I know certain pro dancers would like to dance with a woman because that is what tradition is, and it kind of makes sense but it is very much down to someone’s personal opinion of what ballroom and Latin dancing actually is.
“My view is, for example with ballroom and Latin, they do same-sex competitions for under 12s and there are usually more girls than boys who want to dance and so there would be all-girl partnerships.”
It was recently announced that double Olympic gold-winning boxer Nicola Adams would be part of the historic same-sex pairing.
“I’m a huge fan of the show and am thrilled to be part of something that holds such a special place in so many people’s hearts,” she told the BBC.
“People might know me from work in the ring, but I’ll be every bit as passionate and dedicated on the dance-floor.
“I wanted to thank the BBC for supporting me and making me the first ever all female-pairing; and it’s amazing to be a part of the movement for change, diversity and breaking boundaries in the entertainment industry.”
The BBC recently shut down anti-LGBTQ+ viewers who complained about the pairing, calling Strictly an “inclusive show” that is “proud to have featured same-sex dancing amongst the professional dancers in group numbers in previous series.”
“We have stated, in the past, that we are open to the prospect of including same-sex pairings between our celebrities and professional dancers, should the opportunity arise,” they wrote. “Nicola Adams requested an all-female pairing, which we are happy to facilitate.”
They continued: “The show is first and foremost about dance, the sex of each partner within a coupling should have no bearing on their routine.”