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Dancing On Ice could be forced to make this huge change to next series

Dancing on Ice logo
(Image credit: ITV)

It would be a first if there was no audience

The upcoming series of Dancing On Ice may have to go ahead without a studio audience due to coronavirus risk.

Britain's Got Talent star Ashley Banjo, who rose to fame in dance troupe Diversity, joined the Dancing On Ice judging panel back in 2018. The performance pro has now revealed that big changes may be made to the ITV ice skating show's format when it makes a return in January 2021.

"Discussions about Dancing On Ice have already started and they are talking about not having an audience right now," Ashley told the Daily Star.

If the hit show, which sees celebs learn how to perform epic figure skating routines alongside professional skating partners, were to return with no audience, it would be a first in the programme's 16 series history.

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The father-of-two was also excited about the prospect of a drag queen taking to the ice for the first time on the show, commenting on reports that RuPaul's Drag Race UK contestant Baga Chipz is in the 2021 line up.

"The show is good for having ‘firsts’ and we’ve never had a drag queen… well, not any that we know!"

Ashley's revelation comes after it was revealed that BBC's 2020 series of Strictly Come Dancing was at risk of losing its studio audience in light of the coronavirus crisis.

It was confirmed last month that the beloved dance contest would return in the autumn for a limited run, with social distancing measures set to be of paramount importance during filming and dancing stars thought to be self-isolating before teaming up with their celeb partners.

"The Strictly Come Dancing team are doing everything they can to bring the nation plenty of Strictly magic later this year," a statement from the Beeb said.

"The safety of our cast and crew is of the utmost importance to us and further updates will be made in due course."

Caitlin Elliott
Caitlin Elliott

Caitlin is Junior News Editor for woman&home, covering all things celeb, fashion, beauty and lifestyle. 

Having set her sights on becoming a magazine journalist when she was a child, Caitlin took on work experience stints at local papers and titles such as Cosmopolitan, Now, Reveal and Take a Break while studying for her Multimedia Journalism degree and has interviews with celebs, reality stars and the Archbishop of Canterbury under her belt (of course, she couldn't resist asking him about Meghan Markle and Prince Harry). After leaving uni, she dabbled in fashion PR as a Press Assistant for Topshop before becoming a part of the Now team at Future for her first real job in the world of online journalism, joining the ranks as a Digital Writer in 2019. Caitlin went on to add the likes of Woman, GoodtoKnow, WhatToWatch and woman&home to her writing repertoire before moving on to her current role. 

When she's not working you'll find Caitlin sipping bubbles at brunch with her besties, thinking about her next iced coffee, trying to close the rings on her Apple Watch, scrubbing up on her royal family knowledge or scrolling through the Zara app, trying to resist tapping 'check out' again.