Strictly Come Dancing’s Erin Boag shares demands from Craig Revel Horwood riders | Celebrity News | Show biz & TV

It’s quarterfinal week and whatever happens tonight, we’re headed for a surprise expulsion. After Tilly Ramsay left last week, there are only five couples left and the competition is wide open. So the pressure is on – for celebrities anyway. My good friend Craig Revel Horwood tells me he doesn’t feel any stress. But he has a trick. Before Strictly goes on the air, he cleans his dressing room and lies down to listen to quiet music.

This keeps preconceived ideas about the candidates from coming to his mind, he tells me, because he wants the best dancer of the night to pass.

And don’t think for a moment that Craig is the diva some imagine.

He might be playing the panto villain, but in real life he’s a lovable guy.

In fact, his only rider requests are two ripe avocados and a packet of McCoy’s cheese and onion crisps, which he crushes into his sandwiches. I just hope he cleans his teeth afterwards!

During this time, those who remain in the competition will feel exhausted.

They work ridiculous hours, juggling costume fittings and TV appearances around their daily jobs.

They will have light bulbs on their light bulbs and family life will be gone through the window.

Rose Ayling-Ellis is lucky enough to have American Smooth tonight after last week’s spectacular paso doble.

It’s more creative than straight ballroom dancing and we rely on razzmatazz for the wow factor.

Dan Walker tango dances on Gotan Project’s Santa Maria, one of my all-time favorites.

Last week’s rumba showed he had worked hard on his arm lines and partnership skills. Now he must embrace the drama of the tango.

After an elegant and sophisticated Couple’s Choice routine, AJ Odudu faces a more difficult challenge with salsa. It’s a party routine on the floor requiring armography, hip action, and nerve.

John Whaite, whose Argentine tango wowed both female judges last week, now needs an explosive routine for his salsa, demonstrating hip flexibility, which he previously lacked.

Rhys Stephenson wouldn’t have found himself in last week’s dance if viewers had appreciated the effort and technique it takes to beautifully dance a slow waltz.

His emotional and graceful performance was greatly appreciated by the judges, and he will have to do the same again tonight with a seductive Argentine tango.

Unfortunately, I predict he will be in the bottom two with John.

May the best win!

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