Strictly’s Layton Williams in tears over exhaustion as Nikita ‘pushing him’

Strictly: Layton Williams earns high scores in week one

Layton Williams has revealed that he’s “cried” since he’s signed up for the current series of Strictly Come Dancing.

The 29-year-old star is best known for playing Stephen Carmichael in the hit BBC series Bad Education, but first shot to fame when he appeared in the West End theatre production of Billy Elliot.

Speaking to Alan Carr on the podcast ‘Life’s a Beach,’ Layton has opened up about his time on the dance competition so far.

When asked if he’s cried yet, Layton replied: “Honestly, I did an evening shop and I just felt like I needed to cry.

“I just felt overwhelmed – it’s the exhaustion. Putting your body through that much exercise, like 8 hours a day.”

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“All eyes are on you. It’s giving like cameras in the room a lot, like 90 per cent of the time. I did not think it would be as hard as it was,” Layton added. “My partner is pushing me.”

The West End star is paired with 25-year-old professional Nikita Kuzmin in a same-sex partnership.

Despite his impressive scores so far, Layton has also faced scrutiny from Strictly fans over his history of dance experience.

EastEnders actress Michelle Collins claimed that it is “not fair” to have him on the show.

She wrote on Instagram after he topped the leaderboard in Week Two: “Sorry but he is a professional dancer it’s not fair! I love him but he’s great already.”

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Many of her followers disagreed with her opinion, with one person wading in on the conversation and said: “Did you comment on the other ones with dance experience Michelle? Nah, didn’t think so.”

Another person typed: “That’s what’s irritating me. I think some people are just looking for reasons to have a go at Layton.”

A third commented: “It would be boring with all les Dennis’… Yeah he’s from a dancing background however has had to learn a new way of dancing.”

You can listen to Layton’s full interview on the podcast here. 

Strictly Come Dancing continues on Saturday at 6.30pm on BBC One.

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