FURIOUS pantomime bosses have been forced to replace their star signing Kelvin Fletcher after he double-booked himself by signing up to Strictly Come Dancing.
The Emmerdale actor, 35, who has played popular Andy Sugden on the ITV soap for 20 years, was due to play the lead role in Aladdin at St Helens Theatre Royal, Merseyside in December.
But directors had to scramble to find a stand-in when Kelvin made the surprise decision to join the BBC show because Made In Chelsea’s Jamie Laing, 30, suffered a foot injury last week.
In an emergency move on Thursday ex-Strictly pro dancer Robin Windsor, 40, has now been hired to star in the panto to keep theatregoers happy.
A theatre source said: “Kelvin had agreed to both and was going to have to get himself booted out of Strictly before the lucrative pantomime show started to avoid a backlash from fans who have already bought tickets.
“But bosses at the theatre realised the potential nightmare, stepped in and swapped him out — you just can’t be committed to both things at once.”
Earlier this week pro-dancer Oti Mabuse, 29, revealed she wept tears of sorrow and then joy when she found out she was being partnered with Kelvin.
Kelvin, 35, arrives for Strictly Come Dancing rehearsals in Manchester[/caption]
Kelvin will replace Made In Chelsea’s Jamie Laing, who dropped out of Strictly after an injury[/caption]
most read in bizarre
She said: “I had a long, tearful conversation with Jamie. For a while I thought I had no partner and I was in bed thinking, ‘I can’t do the show’.
“I was feeling really bad, but one of the producers said, ‘We’ll see what we can do.’
“When they called and told me about Kelvin, I cried – and it turns out he’s incredible.”
- GOT a news story? RING us on 0207 782 4104 or WHATSAPP on 07423720250 or EMAIL [email protected]