Bobby Brazier has said it was a “privilege” to honour his late mother Jade Goody with his couple’s choice dance on Strictly Come Dancing last week.
The 20-year-old EastEnders actor’s emotional routine to This Woman’s Work by Maxwell with professional partner Dianne Buswell secured him a score of 37 points.
Brazier said he “wouldn’t be surprised” if he got his confidence on the dancefloor from his mother, who died in 2009 aged 27 with cervical cancer.
Reflecting on how it felt to perform the routine in memory of his mother, he said: “It was a privilege. I knew (for) my couple’s choice I wanted (it) to be that.
“Although it was daunting to perform because that song is perfect… but I’m really, really, really glad I did.”
Brazier received a standing ovations from judges Shirley Ballas and Motsi Mabuse for the performance and revealed he had also been sent a lot of positive messages on social media.
He said: “It really touched people, which is what I wanted to do so I welcomed all the love.”
“We communicated, we translated something to people and that’s what I wanted to do,” he added.
“I think that’s what happens when you dance authentically and from your heart. So I’m really glad that that happened.”
Discussing his father’s thoughts on his dancing ability, he said: “He’s shocked and he doesn’t know where I get whatever it is that makes one get to the quarter-finals in Strictly from, because he doesn’t see so much of that in himself.”
Asked if he thinks that special quality may have been passed on from his mother, he said: “Could be, I’m not sure, I wouldn’t be surprised though.”
This week for the quarter-finals he took on the salsa to (I’ve Had) The Time of My Life from the hit 1987 movie Dirty Dancing.
Buswell revealed she had never done the lift within their routine before with any professional dancer on any show she has worked on as it is “very difficult”.
The Australian dancer said she decided to incorporate it into the routine now as the stakes were getting higher as they were getting further into the competition.
“He’s done a great job and I feel really safe in his hands,” she added.
Reflecting on his time on the show so far, Brazier said it has taught him “so many things” – including what hard work feels like and how to be with someone intensely everyday.
He added that he also feels like he has grown up more while competing on the show, to which Buswell agreed, saying: “From those first two weeks ’til now, (you’re) like a different person.”
Strictly Come Dancing continues on BBC One.