John Whaite and Johannes Radebe made Strictly Come Dancing history by performing the first ever all-male performance, topping the leader board with their Tango to “Blue Monday” by the New Order.
Whaite, a famed British author and 2012 winner of “The Great British Bakeoff”, spoke of his hopes for being paired with Radebe before the premiere of the show, speaking on the opportunity to send a message of acceptance.
He told HELLO! magazine, “I hope it is Johannes because I think it’ll be really important for him to have the first all-male couple. I think it’ll be a really powerful message as well.”
He quickly added, “That’s not to say in the future it has to be two gay men. It could be two straight men, but I think for the first one it’ll be really important for it to be.”
The two stars received a standing ovation after their first dance and were praised by the judges. Shirley Ballas, English ballroom dancer and instructor, felt that it was “a testimony to the same sex couple, it was absolutely exquisite, to go from leader to being lead, beautiful choreography, it was absolutely stunning.” Craig Revel-Horwood, fellow ballroom dancer and judge, added that he had “loved it”.
Whaite later told the Daily star that he was partially surprised with the reception to his first dance on Strictly. “The reaction was very positive. I thought I would get a lot of hatred in my inbox because I’m in a partnership with the first all-male group.”
He continues, “But to be honest, I didn’t get any negative messages. I think I realized how important all of this was.”
Johannes Radebe, who has been on Strictly since 2014, posted a powerful rendering's of his and Whaite's dance with an emotional caption to show his appreciation for the positive feedback he'd received after the shows premiere.
The caption reads: "I'll have to write a book about this moment because a caption won't cut it, but last night felt incredible too beautiful to put into words.
I wanted to say thank you for the words of encouragement and support you all have shown us and I'm thrilled you enjoyed the tango like we did."
Then ended the caption expressing how proud he was of his dance partner, Whaite.
Whaite also took to instagram to show his appreciation for his dance partner, taking the more sheepish route in expressing love for Radebe.
The caption reads: "Seeing this guys reaction to our dance tonight made every single ache and pain worth it." He then called Rabede a "kind" adding a kissy face to the message.