Sunday, October 05, 2014

Same-sex dancing has been in the news this year, mainly as a result of the British Dance Council's proposal to change its rules. Their decision is expected towards the end of this month.

When the BBC announced that Scott Mills would be in this year's Strictly Come Dancing celebrity line-up, some people speculated that he might be paired with another male dancer - possibly Anton du Beke. But in the event it turned out the programme's producers chose Joanne Clifton as his dance partner.

According to Digital Spy, Scott said "Other gay people have done the show, like Julien Macdonald last year, and no-one said he should have a male dancer.

"I don't know why it's happened with me. I'll do what the producers want me to do. You don't have to dance with a man because you're gay."

Strictly is sometimes quite sexually charged as was evident on last night's show - in particular during Alison Hammond's dance routine. And as part of Scott and Joanne's dance, Joanne planted a great big smacker on his face.

Judging time, and Scott has telltale lipstick marks on his right cheek

Scott is reportedly content that the programme is not homophobic, though, of course, as a BBC employee he might not be totally impartial.

In July 2014 I was advised that there were no immediate plans for including same-sex pairings, but that the idea had not been ruled out for future shows. Viewers might have noticed a nod towards a more inclusive approach when the judges were introduced last night, as well as at the very end of the show.

Whereas BBC children's TV has been making determined efforts to become more diverse, for example with this report yesterday, it seems there is still one area of diversity that bosses are less happy about covering; when Newsround interviewed Scott Mills about Strictly any reference to the same-sex dancing issue, or even to his sexuality, was strictly off-limits!

No comments: