Skint Dancing On Ice's Graham Bell admits he would be ‘working on a building site’ if he hadn’t signed up for show
DANCING On Ice’s Graham Bell has revealed that he would be 'working with his mate Dave on a building site' had he not signed up to take part in the show.
Olympic skier and TV presenter Graham, 55, had not worked for six months and was starting to struggle mentally.
So when his agent called to say that Dancing On Ice bosses wanted him to audition for the hit ITV show, he jumped at the chance.
Speaking exclusively to The Sun Online, dad-of-two Graham said: “When I got the call from my agent saying we’ve got you an audition for one of these big celebrity shows, I was like great, is it SAS Who Dares Wins? I love that show.
“They were like no, it’s not SAS, it’s Dancing on Ice, which came as a real surprise because I can’t actually dance. I had to look up what musicality was and Google it. I thought musicality was just about which song you pick.
“The only dancing I’d done before this was getting up on a table at a ski resort, wearing boots, trying not to knock peoples drinks over, and it’s certainly not graceful or elegant.
“But it was a no-brainer, taking part in the show. With the situation being the way it was, I hadn’t worked for six months.
"I was supposed to go to Tokyo to work on the Olympics, and obviously that was delayed.
“And then every job I had over the summer was cancelled. I tell a lie, I did one day’s work for a Channel 5 programme called ‘When Stunts Go Horribly Wrong'. That was my entire work for six months.
“So when the offer of solid work came in, I was like: I’m doing it.
"It wasn’t about money, it was about the sanctity of doing something and having a goal because if I wasn’t doing this I would probably be working with my mate Dave on a building site.
“There’s no skiing work, everything is shut down. Ski Sunday is gonna happen but I wouldn’t be able to get out there anyway, as we’re in lockdown.”
Graham, who is partnered with American figure skater Yebin Mok, 36, is the oldest celebrity taking part in the new series, which starts on Sunday.
And following the success of Bill Bailey, 55, on Strictly Come Dancing, he’s hoping to follow in the comedian’s footsteps, even though he’s already dropped his professional partner TWICE.
Show newbie Yebin is married to fellow Dancing On Ice professional Tom Naylor, 33, and Graham reveals that her hubby has been on the phone trying to help him with the lifts.
He said: “Tom has been helping me with the lifting. He’s sent me a lot of really useful information because I’m the one who’s trying to lift his missus and not break her!
“I’ve only dropped Yebin twice! And luckily it’s been from a low height, so she was okay.
"I just try and wrap her up, I try and become Groot from Guardians of the Galaxy, where I basically try to grow long limbs and wrap her up. I’d rather her land on top of me than on the ice.
“There’s a lot of laughing going on but we’ve been training hard. We’ve got a couple of lifts in our first routine, which we are performing to the theme tune of Ski Sunday.
“I’ve been on a diet as I’ll be wearing a figure hugging catsuit! I’m happy to embrace it all. If you’re going to go in for something you’ve got to go all in.”
And on being the oldest celebrity taking part, he added: “I’m competitive but I know it’s not my area of expertise, because I don’t have that performing background.
“Bill is less than a year older than me and it was crazy that he won Strictly so who knows what’s going to happen. I’ll be skating during the opening show and I can’t wait.
"All I can do is take one week at a time. It's about entertaining the viewers and seeing who can have the most fun with it."
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