Dancing On Wheels - Episode 1 of 6
Thursday 11th February
21:00 - 22:00
It's ballroom dancing like you've never seen before as Strictly Come Dancing's Brian Fortuna trains six wheelchair-users and their celebrity partners in the art of wheelchair ballroom dancing. The pairs have just five weeks to train for a series of weekly competitions before a panel of judges. Then, week by week, one couple will be eliminated with the winning duo going on to represent the UK in an International Wheelchair Dancing Competition in Tel Aviv. Over six programmes full of the glitz, glamour, tears and tantrums of competitive dance, Dancing On Wheels proves wheelchair ballroom dancing is just as graceful, glamorous and entertaining as able-bodied dancing. In the opening episode, the six meet their celebrity partners for the first time. They are briefed by choreographer Brian and make their first tentative moves on the dance floor. Three couples must learn the Cha Cha Cha while the others take on the Tango. Brian faces a monumental challenge. None of the wheelchair-users have ballroom danced before and while the celebrities either have experience from Strictly Come Dancing or dance training in their background, they are completely new to wheelchair ballroom dancing. And with the first performance just four weeks away, the pressure is on.
The celebrity dancers are M People's Heather Small, world champion swimmer Mark Foster, TV presenter Caroline Flack, Hollyoaks actor Kevin Sacre, actress and singer Michelle Gayle and rugby league legend Martin Offiah. After a month of training, throwing wheelies, pulling spins, running over toes and falling out of chairs, it's time to compete in front of the panel of judges for the first time. The judges are reigning Strictly Come Dancing champion, Ola Jordan, her husband, James Jordan (also from Strictly) and paralympic athlete Ade Adepitan.
In an emotional climax to the first episode, one couple is sent home as the others are left to battle it out in the following weeks to represent the UK at the European Championship of Wheelchair Dance Sport in Tel Aviv.