Strictly 2020 pairings: Nicola Adams and Katya Jones CONFIRMED as show's first ...

The Strictly Come Dancing 2020 pairings were revealed on Saturday night during the highly-anticipated pre-recorded launch show for the 18th series.

Celebrities including Nicola Adams, Jamie Laing and Maisie Smith discovered which professional dancer would put them through their paces in the upcoming weeks. 

The launch consisted of the celebrities discovering their professional partners for the first time, though in a post-COVID change, they were instead revealed via video link.

It's back! The Strictly Come Dancing 2020 pairings were revealed on Saturday night during the highly-anticipated pre-recorded launch show for the 18th series

It's back! The Strictly Come Dancing 2020 pairings were revealed on Saturday night during the highly-anticipated pre-recorded launch show for the 18th series

This will allow for couples to form their own individual 'bubbles' for training and performances, meaning the stars will have maintain distance from each other during filming.  

Elsewhere during the show, the pros dazzled with a sensational opening routine with judges Shirley Ballas, Motsi Mabuse and Craig Revel-Horwood seated on separate podiums to ensure the programme adheres to COVID-19 safety guidelines. 

Fourth judge Bruno Tonioli was unable to travel back to the UK from his home in LA for the filming due to the Covid-19 crisis and his work commitments on Dancing With The Stars. 

Making history: Celebrities including Nicola Adams (pictured with pro partner Katya Jones), Jamie Laing and Maisie Smith discovered which professional dancer would put them through their paces in the upcoming weeks

Making history: Celebrities including Nicola Adams (pictured with pro partner Katya Jones), Jamie Laing and Maisie Smith discovered which professional dancer would put them through their paces in the upcoming weeks 

He has spent the last 15 years jetting between the US and the UK for the two shows but coronavirus travel restrictions have scuppered his schedule.

Also during the show, presenters Tess Daly and Claudia Winkleman reunited with the pair ensuring they stood at least two metres apart throughout the episode.

The first celebrity to meet her partner was Caroline, 60, who had headed to Shakespeare's Globe Theatre in South Bank, London, where she was surprised on stage by pro Johannes, 33, who sweetly held a bouquet of flowers.

Upon meeting for the first time, the Men Behaving Badly star gushed: 'Oh, I am so glad it's you, you're the one I want! Hooray, it's us together!' 

Paired: The launch consisted of the celebrities discovering their professional partners for the first time, though in a post-COVID change, they were instead revealed via video link (Jamie and pro partner Karen Hauer pictured)

Paired: The launch consisted of the celebrities discovering their professional partners for the first time, though in a post-COVID change, they were instead revealed via video link (Jamie and pro partner Karen Hauer pictured) 

And the duo wasted no time as Johannes quickly spun Caroline around Shakespeare's Globe to which he declared: 'It's fire, it's hot!'

Talking in the studio, Caroline said: 'I love him, he makes me happy,' to which he added: 'Darling, I am going to flip her up, down, side-to-side, she doesn't know what is coming!'   

Next up was Clara, 36, who was surprised by her pro partner Aljaz, 30, during her radio duties at the BBC studios.

She said: 'I am so pleased, his energy, I immediately connected with it.'

While Aljaz added: 'She seems like such a lovely, cool, girl. I can't wait to get started!'

Fun times: The first celebrity to meet her partner was Caroline, 60, who had headed to Shakespeare's Globe Theatre in South Bank, London, where she was surprised on stage by pro Johannes, 33, who sweetly held a bouquet of flowers

Fun times: The first celebrity to meet her partner was Caroline, 60, who had headed to Shakespeare's Globe Theatre in South Bank, London, where she was surprised on stage by pro Johannes, 33, who sweetly held a bouquet of flowers 

Talking on the show after their pairing was aired, Clara said: 'Aljaz was definitely in my top three, the number one, it's all about you!'

Next up to meet their professional partner was GMB star Ranvir, 43, who was surprised on a walk with her pet dog by Giovanni, 30.

Admitting she was 'sick with nerves' before hand, the presenter revealed that she had a dream about Giovanni before their pairing and joked it was a premonition.

She quipped: 'I actually had a dream about you, so dreams do come true!' to which Giovanni replied: 'I am so happy!'

Back in the studio, Giovanni revealed that their first dance next Saturday would be a Pasodoble to Beyonce, while Ranvir sweetly shared that her son, Tushaan, eight, is 'super proud' and told her she had to agree to take part. 

Next up was singer Hrvy, 21, real name Harvey Leigh Cantwell, who was surprised at a concert venue by Janette, 36. 

The star was left overjoyed to be with Janette, calling their partnership a 'fiery mess', he said: 'We have the same excitement, we're going to bounce off each other really well.'

Back in the studio, Hrvy, who tested positive for coronavirus earlier this month, was asked about how he was feeling since recovering and testing negative.

He said: 'I can't believe I made it this far, I tested positive, isolated with my family, I'm here.' 

Elsewhere, Janette revealed she has to live separately from her husband and fellow pro Aljaz throughout the competition.

Former boxer Nicola, 37, and professional dancer Katya, 31, were confirmed as a pairing and are set to make history as the show's first-ever same-sex couple.

Lovely: Next up to meet their professional partner was GMB star Ranvir, 43, who was surprised on a walk with her pet dog by Giovanni, 30

Lovely: Next up to meet their professional partner was GMB star Ranvir, 43, who was surprised on a walk with her pet dog by Giovanni, 30

It had been reported for weeks that the duo would be teamed up after they were spotted leaving filming together with fellow pro Karen Hauer reportedly 'gutted' to have lost out to Katya.

A source revealed to The Sun: 'Karen is absolutely gutted. For ages she was the favourite to get the nod to dance with Nicola and had even gone as far as planning out routines for them to perform.'  

They went on to say that the duo had got to 'know each other' quite well and had become 'good friends', they added: 'She'd not only got her heart set on dancing with Nicola, she had prepared herself for it mentally. So for them to suddenly decide to pick Katya was a massive blow.'

The Venezuelan had long been tipped as favourite to pair up with Nicola, but it's said that producers opted to go with Katya instead, believing she'll have 'perfect chemistry' with the boxer.

The source added to the publication: 'Dancing with Nicola is the job all the professionals wanted. It is the most sought-after position in showbiz right now. So for Katya to get the nod has underlined her as the queen of the show.'

They added that the Russian stunner is 'absolutely delighted' at the news and cannot keep the smile off her face. MailOnline contacted a Strictly representative for comment at the time. 

Nicola recently joked about the 'Strictly Curse' and insisted that there is nothing that can 'compete' with what she has with her girlfriend Ella Baig, 22. 

She told the Daily Mail: 'Our family and friends have been taking the mickey about the 'Strictly Curse' but she's fine. She knows I love her and she completes me, so anybody else just doesn't come close.

'When you're in a relationship and you're completely satisfied, there's no need for anybody else. There's nothing that can compete with what Ella and I have.' 

Elsewhere celebrity Jamie, 31, failed to reunite with professional dancer Oti Mabuse. The duo were originally paired up on the 2019 series but he was forced to pull out of the show after the launch episode after suffering a nasty foot injury, Oti went on to win the show with replacement contestant Kelvin Fletcher.

The Made In Chelsea star, who recently admitted he has felt under 'pressure' to do well after Oti and Kelvin scooped the coveted Glitterball Trophy, was instead paired with Karen Hauer. 

This year's Strictly has been more anticipated than ever as the country is in the grip of the coronavirus crisis, and has seen drastic changes to ensure the series could go ahead, albeit with a shortened run. 

During the show, Tess and Claudia were separated from the orchestra by a clear perspex screen in order to adhere to Covid-19 regulations. 

The launch consisted of the celebrities discovering their professional partners for the first time, though in a post-COVID change, they were instead revealed via. video link.

This will allow for couples to form their own individual 'bubbles' for training and performances, meaning the stars will have maintain distance from each other during filming. 

The professional dancers took to the stage to showcase their dance moves with a sensation opener, and were also accompanied by a stunning performance by Joel Corry and MNEK.

Judges Craig, Shirley and Motsi also took their place on the panel, though this year saw them sat on separate desks to maintain social distancing.

Fourth judge Bruno has been unable to appear in the studio due to travel restrictions introduced by the COVID-19 pandemic, but will make guest appearances from his home in Los Angeles. 

Strictly has already had its fair share of scares even before Saturday's launch, after Hrvy tested positive for coronavirus just days before filming for the launch was scheduled to take place.

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