Chris McCausland 'to make history on Strictly Come Dancing as first blind contestant'

Virgin Radio

3 Jun 2024, 13:29

Credit: Getty/BBC

Liverpool comedian Chris McCausland is set to join the dance floor on Strictly Come Dancing, hoping to shine as brightly as Rose Ayling-Ellis.

Chris McCausland, the hilarious Scouser who’s been tickling our funny bones on shows like Have I Got News for You, is gearing up to take on the glittering challenge of Strictly Come Dancing.

And here's the kicker: he's making history as the show's first-ever blind contestant.



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Hot on the heels of his cheeky banter about Michael Gove entering I’m a Celebrity, the 46-year-old comedian has signed up for a reality series adventure of his own.

The Liverpool native is the first contestant announced for the 22nd series this autumn, and he's all set to follow in the fabulous footsteps of actress Rose Ayling-Ellis, who wowed us all by winning Strictly in 2021 as the show's first deaf contestant.

Chris lost his sight at the age of 22 due to the hereditary condition retinitis pigmentosa. Despite this, he's become a beloved figure on the comedy circuit and a regular on TV panel shows.

His act, often playing on his blindness, has also seen him star in the CBBC show Me Too! But now, Chris is swapping punchlines for pasodobles, and he's determined to give it his all.

“When it started happening it was scary and embarrassing,” Chris told The Sun about losing his sight.

“I got myself into bad situations because I didn’t want to ask for help. I will never be on a level playing field with everyone else.”

But if there's one thing we've learned from Strictly, it's that the dance floor is a place where the unexpected can happen.

Just look at Rose Ayling-Ellis, who not only stole our hearts but also the glitterball trophy in 2021.

Rose, the EastEnders star, proved that barriers can be broken with her incredible journey on the show.

After her triumphant win, Rose said: “I’ve become more me than I’ve ever been because of Strictly.”

Her dance partner, Giovanni Pernice, was equally full of praise, saying: “Incredible. I have to say thank you to this beautiful young lady who made all my dreams come true.

"It took me seven years to get that thing and you became the best dancer, the best teammate I could have asked for, you are a dream so thank you for everything.”

Chris McCausland's journey to the Strictly dance floor may be just beginning, but he’s no stranger to overcoming challenges.

With a background that includes a stint in IT and even an attempt at joining MI5, Chris is ready to tackle this new adventure head-on.

“I applied to MI5, and got down to the final 30 out of 3000 applicants,” he told the i earlier this year.

“They were really excited at first, and said that this was new territory for them, but in the end they turned me down purely because of my eyesight. Fair enough, I suppose.”

As a married father, Chris brings a wealth of life experience and humour to the Strictly stage. His ability to find the funny side of life’s challenges has made him a favourite on the comedy circuit.

Now, he’ll need to channel that same resilience and wit into learning the cha-cha and the tango.

Strictly Come Dancing has a history of breaking new ground and celebrating diversity, and Chris McCausland’s participation is a testament to that tradition.

His journey will undoubtedly inspire viewers, just as Rose Ayling-Ellis’s did.

Rose and Giovanni’s partnership showed that with determination and support, anything is possible.

Chris, with his quick wit and indomitable spirit, is set to bring a whole new dimension to the dance floor.

So, as we prepare for another season of sequins, samba, and sensational performances, all eyes will be on Chris McCausland.

Will he follow in Rose Ayling-Ellis’s glittering footsteps and cha-cha his way into our hearts?

Only time will tell, but one thing’s for sure – this season of Strictly is set to be one for the history books.