Graziano Di Prima and Johannes Radebe made Strictly Come Dancing history in November with their stunning same-sex performance. The two teamed up during a results show and danced together while pop star Emeli Sande sang, while fellow professionals Aljaz Skorjanec and Luba Mushtuk also took part in the routine.
Around 10.5 million people tuned in for the episode but a handful of people logged complaints with the BBC, amounting to around 300 in December, reports The Metro.
Speaking about the reaction, Graziano questioned why he should “care” as he spoke about how important the dance was.
In February’s issue of Attitude Magazine, he said: “We weren’t worried about it. OK, there were 200 complaints, but there were millions of people writing to us, sending us videos saying thank you and celebrating our friendship.
“And for [Johannes], as a gay man, it means the world… There were thousands and thousands of people saying: ‘Thank you guys for doing that, it means the world’.”
Graziano continued: “Why should I care about 200 people? Are you kidding me?
“Those 200 people, you will see that in the future they will change their minds. It is such a silly thing because dancing is for everyone.”
The professional performer added: “As long as you feel the energy that dance can give to you, you can dance with whoever you want.”
In response to the complaints, the BBC said in November: “Strictly Come Dancing is an inclusive show and is proud to have been able to facilitate the dance between Johannes and Graziano during the professionals’ dance.
“They are dancers first and foremost, and their sex had no bearing on their routine.”
Following the special dance, Johannes said he felt “liberated” and called the moment with one of his best friends, “joyous”.
“I’ve never felt so liberated,” the South African star told Hello! Magazine.
“For the first time in my life, I feel accepted for who I am. That says so much about the people of this country.”
He continued: ”To be able to dance with a friend I respect and adore is joyous. There’s bromance galore between us, but there were no male and female roles, just free movement. It was beautiful, classy and elegant.”
When it emerged their routine had received complaints, professionals on the show and judge Bruno Tonioli spoke out.
Kevin Clifton shared to his Twitter fans: “What on earth were they complaining about? It was ace.”
His girlfriend, Stacey Dooley, who won the show with Kevin in 2018, reacted to the story circulating online: “So depressing.”