By Amy Hunt
Her Strictly exit was one of the most shocking TV moments of the last few years, and now former judge Arlene Philips has revealed that she will reveal the real reason she departed the popular BBC show.
The news that the veteran judge was to be dropped from the popular dancing show Strictly Come Dancing in 2009, after a five-year-long stint, shocked audiences and fans alike.
The reason the 72-year-old was dropped from the show has been shrouded in secrecy for the last eight years. Arlene herself has also remained coy on the subject, and earlier even admitted that she was never even given a proper reason for her dismissal.
In an interview, she said, "I've never really been given a real reason. I don't think I will ever know the answer."
Her exit from the wildly successful programme was, at the time, hit with accusations of sexism and ageism too. Harriet Harman, equality minister at the time, even commented on her dismissal, saying,
"I think it's asolutely shocking thatArlene Phillipsis not going to be a judge on Strictly Come Dancing. And as equality minister, I am suspicious that there is age discrimination there."
But now it seems the time has come for Arlene to tell her full side of the story, after years of holding back the truth.
Speaking to The Telegraph, she has said that her brand new live show, Arlene! The Glitz. The Glamour. The Gossip. will unveil all of those tightly guarded Strictly secrets.
She said, "Yes, I'm going to talk about being on Strictly... and being off Strictly, and how I felt about both. I've promised it's going to be a surprise, so I won't say too much now,
"But I am going to talk about the meeting that I finally had with the BBC and what happened in that room when I did."
But despite many years having passed, it's clear that there's still resentment around the controversial incident for Arlene. When asked by the Telegraph if the show will help her to come to terms with losing her job on Strictly, she replied, "Perhaps.But, if I'm honest, it's not something I'll ever really make peace with. I accept it because I have to."
Arlene! The Glitz. The Glamour. The Gossipwill be showing at the Edinburgh Festival from August 22nd, and the former judge will then go on tour with the show from September 5th - November 20th.
So we'll soon find out exactly what happened behind the closed doors of Strictly all those years ago...
Amy Hunt is Life Channel Editor at womanandhome.com, having been with the brand since 2015. She began as the magazine's features assistant before moving over to digital as a News and Features Writer, before becoming Senior Writer, and now a Channel Editor. She has worked on either women's lifestyle websites previously too—including Woman's Weekly, Goodto.com, Woman, and Woman's Own. In 2019, Amy won the Digital Journalist of the Year award at the AOP Awards, for her work on womanandhome.com. She is passionate about everything from books, to homes, to food and the latest news on the royal family. When she isn't editing or updating articles on cleaning, homewares, the newest home gadgets, or the latest books releases for the website, she's busy burying her nose in a gripping thriller, practising yoga, or buying new homeware of her own.
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