Faye Tozer waltzes her way to the top of the leaderboard

Faye Tozer picked up an almost perfect score tonight after she and partner Giovanni Pernice wowed the judges of Strictly Come Dancing.

Saturday, 24th November 2018, 7:14 pm
Updated Saturday, 24th November 2018, 7:34 pm
Faye and Giovanni. Picture credit: Guy Levy/BBC/PA Wire

The Steps star, who lives in West Boldon with her family, performed a waltz to Dee C. Lee's See the Day for the audience in the BBC One show.

The dance put her joint top of the leaderboard with 39 points but after coming second in the Lindy-hop-athon, and gaining an extra six points, Faye and Giovanni were the sole leaders.

Faye and Giovanni dance the waltz

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Judges Bruno Tonioli, Dame Darcey Bussell and Shirley Ballas awarded them a 10 for their performance while Craig Revel Horwood gave them a nine.

Faye received gleaming comments from the judges across the board despite the extra pressure Faye had felt in the week leading up to the dance.

Craig said: "It was graceful, it was elegant, there was a gorgeous amount of raise and fall my darlings. I loved, absolutely loved, that full semi circle of pivots which is no mean feat."

Darcy added: "You always give something extra, there's that feeling that quality - seamless grace and control, beautiful work. "

The couple had planned to dance the American Smooth but after Giovanni felt a twinge in his back during one of the lifts the couple made the decision to change to a Waltz.

In rehearsals, Faye's parents paid the pair a visit to cheer them on.

Faye said "You never stop needing your mum and dad" adding that they are her biggest fans and worse critics.

The Strictly star did her parents proud having picked up the near perfect score after wowing the judges.

Head judge, Shirley said: "Well I can tell for sure this week you've put long hours of dedication into this because there were skills in this that we haven't seen at all throughout the competition."

She added: "I thought it was exquisite - I have nothing else to say."

Bruno added: "It had such refinement, such polish and the poise it was almost regal."

Adding: "That really was an upper class waltz."

This week was the first time in the series all seven couples had to learn two dances as all the dancers took to the floor to perform a Lindy Hop.

The judges were looking for clean connections, synchronized footwork and precise timing throughout the whole Lindy-hop-athon.

An extra seven marks were up for grabs for the best performance.

After a bit of confusion when reading out the leaderboard, former Pussycat Dolls star Ashley Roberts and her partner Pasha Kovalev was awarded the top score of seven marks but Faye was close behind in second gaining an extra six points.

Seven couples remain after Kate Silverton exited the competition last week following a dance-off with former cricketer Graeme Swann and his professional partner Oti Mabuse.

Tonight's programme is followed up with a results show tomorrow at 7.20pm.