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Strictly Come Dancing: Johannes Radebe felt ‘liberated’ during same-sex dance

Barrier-breaking dancer

Johannes Radebe felt “liberated” when he danced with Graziano Di Prima on Strictly Come Dancing at the weekend.

The 32-year-old professional dancer felt honoured to perform with his best friend in the show’s first all-male routine and it made him feel truly “accepted”.

Johannes and Graziano wowed viewers (Credit: BBC)

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He told HELLO! magazine: “I’ve never felt so liberated. For the first time in my life, I feel accepted for who I am.

“That says so much about the people of this country. To be able to dance with a friend I respect and adore is joyous.

“There’s bromance galore between us, but there were no male and female roles, just free movement. It was beautiful, classy and elegant.”

https://www.instagram.com/p/B4anP3yHiHn/?utm_source=ig_web_copy_link

And the Latin champion admitted being teamed with former Coronation Street star Catherine Tyldesley on the show had helped with his confidence.

He said: “Aunty Cath, as I call her, has been supportive of me from the start.

“It was my first time to be paired with a dance partner and I didn’t want to fail her. That was my biggest fear. I wanted to make sure I gave her the best experience of her life.

Johannes formed a strong bond with Cath (Credit: Guy Levy/BBC)

“But I was so lucky to be paired up with the UK’s sweetheart. She was on Team Johannes from day one. She made me believe in myself more.

“All of a sudden it was like, just be who you are; don’t worry about anything.

“It’s so lovely to be embraced for who I am, to not have to hold back.”

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Though the pair were voted off the show last week, they have vowed to be “friends for life”.

Catherine said: “We just clicked from the start. As well as being a wonderful teacher, he has the most genuine beautiful soul.

“He’s kind, honest and giving with everyone he meets and I trust him implicitly. I tell him stuff I wouldn’t tell most people. We’re friends for life and I feel so grateful to have found him.”

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