The 80-year-old professional dancer served as an original judge on the panel alongside Len Goodman, Bruno Tonioli, and Craig Revel Horwood when the show first aired in 2004. Arlene remained on the show until 2008 when she was replaced by former winner Alesha Dixon.
‘Can’t stand others’
While appearing on BBC Breakfast this morning (September 21) to promote her new dance spectacular House of Flamenka, Arlene made a dig about her co-stars.
“Yeah, you form a bond with some, you actually can’t stand others but you know that’s life,” she said, without naming names. Arlene added: “But you do form a bond and obviously I miss being a part of that crazy, crazy life.”
After being diagnosed with bone cancer, original Strictly judge Len died in April at age 78. Paying tribute to the legend on the show, Arlene expressed it was “beautiful” to watch.
Yeah, you form a bond with some, you actually can’t stand others but you know that’s life.
“Oh my gosh, I thought the tribute was beautiful,” she said. Arlene also is “pleased” to hear that Dancing With The Stars will also “do a massive tribute to him too”.
“It was such a loss, and it was so sudden for many of us because only a few people knew. Bruno knew, but few people actually knew. It was a real shock, particularly as Len and I, we were there at the pilot,” she said.
“We made the pilot and it was wonderfully, brilliantly chaotic,” Arlene continued. “Len and I spent many hours trying to form what the show would be and we were the bodies that were lucky enough to do that.”
Arlene was ‘truly broken’ following Len’s death
Following the sad news of Len’s death in April, Arlene took to Instagram to share her own touching tribute.
“My heart is truly broken hearing the news today about @lengoodmanmbe,” she wrote. “Almost 20 years ago we were both invited to the making of the original pilot of @bbcstrictly. We made a pact that afternoon we would agree to do the show only if we could both do it.”
Arlene expressed they were the “perfect pairing” on and off the screen. “I missed spending so much time with him after I was dropped from #strictlycomedancing but we always kept in touch. He will be so missed. My condolences to his beautiful wife Sue and his family,” she continued.
Arlene concluded: “Len thanks for the happy memories, some of which you can all enjoy in these photos.”
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