Oti Mabuse is leaving BBC One’s Strictly Come Dancing after seven years as a professional dancer on the show.
Otile ‘Oti’ Mabuse announced the news via her Instagram account expressing sadness at the prospect of her departure but also describing how much she enjoyed her time on the popular BBC show. She said: “Never easy to say goodbye, I have been a part of the most amazing TV show, Strictly Come Dancing for the past seven years and it has been an incredible time.”
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“Lifting the glitter ball twice and having the best journey with all my celebrities, but also meeting and working with the best team, crew, producers, celebs and incredible professional dancers! You are my family and I adore you all forever.”
Clearly appreciative of the opportunities the show has afforded her, Oti went on to express her gratitude towards the entire team behind the show and the BBC. “I’m honestly grateful to the BBC and will always remember that strictly and BBC brought me to the UK – which I now call home and I have learnt and grown so much. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.”
The South African born star is known for her groundbreaking record as the only dancer that has lifted the Glitter ball trophy two years in a row; first in 2019 with Kevin Fletcher and then for the second time in 2020 with Bill Bailey.
Oti Mabuse started her career in professional ballroom dancing after studying civil engineering at university. Before finding fame in the UK as a professional dancer on Strictly Come Dancing, she was in a German series called Let’s Dance as a professional dancer and also as a judge.
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Talent clearly runs in the family. Oti’s sister, Motsi Mabuse who serves as a judge on Strictly Come Dancing also shares her sister’s love of the show. in an interview with Melan Magazine back in January 2021, she commented on her experience of being a judge on the show, where she said: “You get to come back every week. It is a fun show, so entertaining, so emotional, people are so committed to it and so professional and you can feel the buzz.”
Commenting on her sister’s decision to leave the show, she said: “It’s time to fly baby girl! I am so proud of you- fearless, courageous and so looking forward to seeing your dreams come true.”
Oti’s bubbly nature and star power has seen her appear on the other side of the dance floor as a judge on Dancing on Ice and The Masked Singer UK. She has also stood in as a guest presenter on The One Show. In 2020 it was announced that Oti would host a BBC documentary called Oti’s South African Odyssey, which will see her return to her country of birth, South Africa, almost ten years after she left.
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Whatever she decides to do, we know she’ll be great at it. We look forward to seeing what Oti does next.