Stay up to date with notifications from The Independent

Notifications can be managed in browser preferences.

Who topped the Strictly Come Dancing leaderboard this week?

Bobby Brazier and Dianne Buswell moved Shirley Ballas to tears with their emotional performance, while Ellie Leach and Vito Coppola got hearts racing with their Argentine Tango

Roisin O'Connor
Sunday 26 November 2023 08:36 GMT
Strictly's Craig Revel Horwood declares Layton Williams 'best dancer he's seen'

The Strictly Come Dancing contestants have returned from Blackpool, with just six couples remaining as the semi-finals loom.

As things heat up, it’s becoming harder to see just who is pulling ahead in the competition, as the judges’ comments get tougher and the dances become more complicated.

On Saturday (25 November), we saw a cha-cha-cha from Angela Scanlon and Carlos Gu to “I Will Survive” by Gloria Gaynor, while Layton Williams and Nikita Kuzmin performed the American Smooth to “It’s Oh So Quiet” by Bjork.

Ellie Leach and Vito Coppola did the Argentine Tango to Destiny’s Child’s “Bills, Bills, Bills”, and Nigel Harman and Katya Jones did an impassioned Rumba to Celine Dion’s “It’s All Coming Back to Me Now”.

Finally, Annabel Croft and Johannes Radebe danced a dramatic Paso Doble to “España Cañi”, and Bobby Brazier and Dianne Buswell opted for “This Woman’s Work” by Kate Bush as their Couple’s Choice.

Brazier and his professional partner Buswell fared much better after facing Angela Rippon and Kai Widdrington in the dreaded dance-off last week, with newsreader Rippon ultimately voted out of the contest.

The EastEnders actor told fans after the episode aired that it was “possibly the most intense 20 minutes of my life”.

“I’ve now realised, no-one is safe,” he said. “Despite seeing your guys’ support for me just grow week in and week out, you’re still not safe, you know? So the votes and stuff are a big part of that, and I’m very grateful for everyone who does vote week in, week out.

“And I now definitely don’t now have a sense of complacency, or a sense of security, or a sense of feeling like I can just rely on you guys.”

Apple TV+ logo

Watch Apple TV+ free for 7 days

New subscribers only. £8.99/mo. after free trial. Plan auto-renews until cancelled

Try for free
Apple TV+ logo

Watch Apple TV+ free for 7 days

New subscribers only. £8.99/mo. after free trial. Plan auto-renews until cancelled

Try for free

This week, Brazier managed to move judge Shirley Ballas to tears with his moving performance, dedicated to his late mother, Jade Goody. Scanlon didn’t do quite so well, with low scores from the judges (with the exception of Anton Du Beke, who seemed to enjoy it), for an underwhelming cha-cha-cha.


Ellie Leach and Vito Coppola: 9 + 10 + 10 + 9 = 38

Bobby Brazier and Dianne Buswell: 8 + 9 + 10 + 10 = 37

Annabel Croft and Johannes Radebe: 8 + 9 + 9 + 10 = 36

Layton Williams and Nikita Kuzmin: 8 + 9 + 8 + 9 = 34

Nigel Harman and Katya Jones: 8 + 8 + 8 + 9 = 33

Angela Scanlon and Carlos Gu: 7 + 7 + 8 + 9 = 31

So that places Leach at the top of this week’s leaderboard, and leaves Scanlon and Harman in danger of the dance-off on Sunday (26 November) night, as the judges’ scores are combined with the public vote.

Strictly Come Dancing continues on Sunday 26 November at 7.20pm on BBC One.

Join our commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies


Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in