Anton du Beke

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Anton du Beke
Anton du Beke and Erin Boag -Symphony Hall -Birmingham 27j2008.jpg
Du Beke and Erin Boag at the Symphony Hall, Birmingham, January 2008
BornAnthony Paul Beke[1]
(1966-07-20) 20 July 1966 (age 48)
Sevenoaks, Kent, England, UK
OccupationProfessional ballroom dancer
television presenter
TelevisionStrictly Come Dancing (2004—present)
Hole in the Wall
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Anton du Beke
Anton du Beke and Erin Boag -Symphony Hall -Birmingham 27j2008.jpg
Du Beke and Erin Boag at the Symphony Hall, Birmingham, January 2008
BornAnthony Paul Beke[1]
(1966-07-20) 20 July 1966 (age 48)
Sevenoaks, Kent, England, UK
OccupationProfessional ballroom dancer
television presenter
TelevisionStrictly Come Dancing (2004—present)
Hole in the Wall

Anthony Beke (known professionally as Anton du Beke) (born 20 July 1966) is a British ballroom dancer and television presenter, best known as a professional dancer on the BBC One celebrity dancing show Strictly Come Dancing since the show began in 2004. In 2009, he presented the UK version of Hole in the Wall, for the BBC, replacing Dale Winton after being a team captain in 2008.

His professional dance partner since 1997 has been Erin Boag.

Family and early life[edit]

Du Beke was born Anthony Paul Beke in Sevenoaks, Kent to a Hungarian father, Antal Xavier Beke (1939-2001), and a Spanish mother, Ascensión [2] (née Lema).[3] He also has two younger siblings.[1] He attended Wildernesse School in Sevenoaks.

Du Beke began dancing at 14, when he discovered his local dance school, the Holton School of Dancing in Sevenoaks. The school was run by Beryl Holton together with her mother Velda and later with her husband Stephen Turner. He took his first dancing exam in June 1981 and started competitive dancing a few years later. He had three partners during these formative years before the Holton School of Dancing closed in 1987 when Beryl and Stephen Turner moved with his banking career to Dorset. Du Beke left school at 16 to follow an amateur dancing career. At 17 he decided to specialise in ballroom. Whilst he danced during the evenings and at weekends he had a day job as a salesman in "The Bed Post" in Petts Wood, South London.[4]

Du Beke lives in Buckinghamshire with girlfriend Hannah.[5]


Strictly Come Dancing[edit]

Main article: Strictly Come Dancing

He has appeared in all twelve series of the BBC's Strictly Come Dancing. In the first series, he danced with singer Lesley Garrett and finished in third place. For the second series, he partnered presenter Esther Rantzen; they were eliminated in the third week. He danced with actress Patsy Palmer for the third series and finished in fifth place. In the fourth series, he danced with actress and impressionist Jan Ravens but was eliminated in week 5 of the competition. His partner for the fifth series was TV presenter Kate Garraway; the couple was voted out in week 7. His partner for the sixth series was actress Gillian Taylforth; the couple was voted out in week 2 (the first week of dancing for the female celebrities). In series seven, he was partnered with Laila Rouass. Together, they made it to week 12 before being voted out in favour of Ricky Whittle and Natalie Lowe. In 2010, he partnered Conservative politician Ann Widdecombe and had made it through to week 10. For its ninth series, Nancy Dell'Olio was Anton's partner, the couple were eliminated in week 5, the Halloween Special. His celebrity partner for the tenth series was supermodel and actress Jerry Hall. They were eliminated during Hollywood Week. His partner for series 11 was actress Fiona Fullerton. They were eliminated in week 8 in Blackpool.

On 14 November 2008 for Children in Need 2008, he took part in a Strictly Come Dancing special. His dance partner was Tess Daly. They won the Golden Pudsey award, beating Terry Wogan and his dance partner Flavia Cacace. Anton, overcome with excitement at winning, yelled, "SIX YEARS!" (the amount of time he had been on Strictly without winning the show at that stage) on learning he and Tess had won.

YearCelebrity partnerWeekDanceJudges' scores
HorwoodPhillips / DixonGoodmanTonioliBussellTotal
Spring 2004Lesley Garrett1Waltz688729
Autumn 2004Esther Rantzen1Waltz567624
Lesley GarrettChristmas specialWaltz788831
2005Patsy Palmer1Waltz346619
American Smooth788831
2006Jan Ravens2Quickstep666624
5Viennese Waltz567725
2007Kate Garraway2Quickstep245415
7Paso Doble457521
2008Gillian Taylforth2Foxtrot457622
2009Laila Rouass1Tango778830
7Viennese Waltz889833
8Paso Doble787830
12American Smooth6777633
2010Ann Widdecombe1Waltz255517
5Paso Doble255416
10American Smooth245314
2011Nancy Dell'Olio1Waltz134412
4Paso Doble355518
2012Jerry Hall1Cha-Cha-Cha355518
2013Fiona Fullerton1Tango576624
7Paso Doble577726
8American Smooth678829

* Rouass only performed half her routine due to injury. The judges scored her on how she was doing until that point.

The series in which du Beke partnered Laila Rouass (Series 7) marks his longest time in the series. The highest place in the show he has achieved is third, with Lesley Garrett.


For the seventh series, he was partnered with actress Laila Rouass. In September 2009, an article in the News of the World claimed that after Rouass applied fake tan for the show, du Beke told her, "Oh my God, you look like a Paki."[6] Du Beke offered an unreserved apology, which Rouass accepted.[6] On BBC Two's It Takes Two, he and Rouass appeared together and spoke about the incident and their reconciliation.[7] The BBC issued a statement: 'Racially offensive language in the workplace is entirely unacceptable. Anton was right to apologise quickly and without reservation and Laila has wholly accepted his apology. Everyone is very clear that there can be no repetition of this behaviour.'[8]

Other television appearances[edit]

In March 2007 du Beke was a contestant on the BBC Two series The Underdog Show and was paired with homeless dog Ginger, they were eliminated in week three of the competition.

Du Beke has presented the BBC cookery show Step Up to the Plate. He served as a captain and from series 2 the host on the UK version of Hole in the Wall, which premiered on 20 September 2008 on BBC One. On 24 December 2009, he appeared in Victoria Wood's Midlife Christmas, in a sketch called "Beyond The Marigolds", where he spoofed his Strictly Come Dancing role by being paired with fictional soap star "Bo Beaumont" (played by Julie Walters). Beaumont quit the show when unable to master Du Beke's warm up steps.

During the week of 5 to 9 May 2014, Du Beke appears on Channel 4 game show Draw It!.[9]

In 2011 Du Beke won the Rear of the Year award.


Du Beke has released a book called Anton's Dance Class (published by Kyle Cathie, London, 2007), which has been serialised in the Mail on Sunday.[10]

Du Beke's A-Z on Ballroom Dancing, B is for Ballroom, (published by Constable, London, 2012) is also now available.[11]

Charity work[edit]

Du Beke is an honorary patron of The Music Hall Guild of Great Britain and America.[12]


  1. ^ a b Births and Deaths England and Wales 1984-2006
  2. ^ Anton Du Beke biodata
  3. ^ Marriage indexes, June 1966, reference page 1966M2-B-0060, at
  4. ^ "Anton du Beke interviewed by Kent Life". Kent Life. 18 October 2010. Retrieved 12 August 2014. 
  5. ^
  6. ^ a b Anton 'Paki' Slur News of the World, 4 October 2009
  7. ^ Du Beke on-air apology for remark BBC News, 9 October 2009
  8. ^ Bruce Forsyth: Strictly race row taken too seriously The Guardian, 8 October 2009
  9. ^ [1]
  10. ^ "Anton's Book". ; ISBN 1-85626-731-8
  11. ^ "B is for Ballroom". ; ISBN 9781472100689
  12. ^ "About Us". The Music Hall Guild. Retrieved 2010. 

External links[edit]