Strictly’s Shirley Ballas reveals secret about judges’ panel

She relies on a huge cushion!

Strictly Come Dancing judge Shirley Ballas has revealed what keeps things even on the judging panel – literally.

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5ft 2 Shirley has revealed what helps her sit as tall as her co-stars (Credit: WENN)

Read more: Craig Revel Horwood “slams Tess Daly’s dull questions on Strictly”

At 5ft 2, Shirley cuts a diminutive figure next to her fellow judges –  including Craig Revel Horwood, who stands at a full foot taller at 6ft 2.

Bruno Tonioli and Darcey Bussell also have a few inches on Shirley, at 5ft 8 and 5ft 7.

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Even in heels, Shirley is significantly shorter than the rest of the judging panel (Credit: WENN)

So to keep her head in line with the others, Shirley has to sit on an enormous cushion!

She shared a behind the scenes shot of the judges’ table to Instagram Stories, showing just how much difference there is between her chair and the other three.

While the judges sit on elegant silver-painted chairs with purple cushions, Shirley’s is marred by a massive piece of black padding.

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She shared a shot of the giant cushion she uses on the show (Credit: Instagram)

Shirley also shared a shot of tonight’s guest judge – Fresh Prince of Bel Air star Alfonso Ribeiro.

The actor, who played the character of Carlton Banks on the hit sitcom, won the American version of the dance show, Dancing with the Stars, back in 2014.

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Shirley shared a shot of guest judge Alfonso (Credit: Instagram)

Alfonso is filling in for Bruno on tonight’s show – and he’s said he’ll bring his own style to the judging panel.

Speaking backstage on It Takes Two, he said there would be a bit less arm flailing than usual.

“I’m going to speak from the heart,” he said. “I’m not going to try to rhyme. There’s not going to be a lot of arms flailing…

“Look, [Bruno] is Italian. I get it. He speaks with his hands! I’m a brother from America so I’m gonna be kinda chill.”

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Alfonso won the American version of Strictly in 2014 (Credit: WENN)

Read more: Giovanni Pernice denies “nonsense” claim by ex-Strictly pro Gleb Savchenko

He also said he’d bring a dose of empathy to the show, as he knows just how hard it is to compete on it.

“I’ve been on the other side, right? I know what it’s like to give your heart or give everything you’ve got for a week, and then have someone come and just beat you down afterwards,” he said.

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