Who is 'Strictly' star Johannes Radebe?

·Contributor
·3-min read
Johannes Radebe is in the 'Strictly Come Dancing' pro cast. (BBC)
Johannes Radebe is in the 'Strictly Come Dancing' pro cast. (BBC)

Pro dancer Johannes Radebe is currently one half of Strictly Come Dancing 2021's star couple, along with John Whaite.

But who is the dancer and who has he partnered before?

Here's all you need to know about Strictly favourite Johannes Radebe.

Who is Johannes Radebe?

WARNING: Embargoed for publication until 21:00:01 on 02/10/2021 - Programme Name: Strictly Come Dancing 2021 - TX: 02/10/2021 - Episode: Strictly Come Dancing - TX2 LIVE SHOW (No. n/a) - Picture Shows: ++DRESS RUN++

*NOT FOR PUBLICATION UNTILL 21:00hrs, SATURDAY 2ND OCTOBER, 2021* John Waite, Johannes Radebe - (C) BBC - Photographer: Guy Levy
Johannes Radebe and John Whaite are the first 'Strictly' all-male pairing. (BBC/Guy Levy)

Johannes Radebe is a 34-year-old professional dancer from South Africa who is currently in the cast of Strictly Come Dancing.

His career in dance includes being the three-time winner of the Amateur South African Latin championships, and has also won the Professional South African Latin championships twice.

Read more: Strictly's most memorable movie week moments ever

Radebe has a strong relationship with Strictly's global versions as he began on the South African show, Dancing With The Stars, before moving over to UK Strictly in 2018.

He also took part in this year's Celebrity MasterChef.

What are the Strictly moments he is best known for?

Gorka, Johannes and Giovanni opened the show in Strictly's musicals week (C) BBC - Photographer: screen grab
Gorka Marquez, Johannes Radebe and Giovanni Pernice in 2020's musicals week. (BBC)

Since Radebe joined Strictly Come Dancing, he has created some of the show's most memorable routines in recent years.

He is currently dancing with John Whaite in one of the 2021 series highlights, the first all-male couple to have taken part in the show.

In movie week, Radebe and Whaite scored a near-perfect 39 points out of 40 for their Pirates of the Caribbean-themed Paso Doble.

Although Whaite and Radebe are the first competitive all-male pairing, Radebe actually performed the first same-sex routine back in 2019 with fellow pro cast member Graziano Di Prima, bringing some viewers to tears with the emotional dance.

He later told Hello! magazine that the reaction had been a huge moment for him after suffering homophobic bullying as a child.

Radebe said: "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.

Graziano Di Prima and Johannes Radebe made history with the show's first same-sex dance. (BBC)
Graziano Di Prima and Johannes Radebe made history with the show's first same-sex dance. (BBC)

"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."

In 2020, he returned to dance another pro cast number alongside Giovanni Pernice and Gorka Marquez where they all wore heels and sequins for the Priscilla Queen of the Desert number, delighting fans again.

Who has Johannes Radebe danced with in Strictly?

Catherine Tyldesley praised Johannes Radebe for giving her confidence on the show (Photo: BBC)
Catherine Tyldesley was his first celebrity partner. (BBC)

Former Bake Off winner Whaite might be Radebe's most notable pairing to date, but he has formed close friendships with his two other celebrity partners since joining Strictly.

In 2018, Radebe joined the show as a member of the professional cast, taking part in group numbers but with no celebrity partner.

Read more: John Whaite comfortable in own skin for first time thanks to Johannes Radebe

He got his first celebrity partner in 2019 with ex-Coronation Street star Catherine Tyldesley, who often mentioned their good friendship and placed 11th in the competition with him.

Radebe's 2020 partner was actor Caroline Quentin, who again formed a close bond with him as she showed off her unexpected dancing skills and the pair reached eighth place together.

Watch: Who is Strictly's John Whaite?

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