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Strictly Come Dancing star Oti Mabuse: ‘Black women are not always angry – we’re vulnerable’


Oti Mabuse wants a more multi-faceted representation of Black women (Picture: Getty Images)

Strictly Come Dancing star Oti Mabuse hopes Black women won’t always be seen as ‘angry’.

The dancer was inspired by Ryan Murphy’s Netflix drama Hollywood, about a group of acting hopefuls trying to make it in the film industry after World War II, and its star Lauren Harrier.

Noting she had been inspired by Lauren’s performance, Oti told Women’s Health: ‘You see someone who looks like you with big full lips, and she’s not shown as “the angry Black woman”.

‘She’s the one who works hard, she’s ambitious, she gets what she wants and that’s just amazing to see. We’re not always angry – we’re vulnerable and we have emotions.’

She also praised Strictly for its ‘representation’ among the professional dancers.

‘When I look at the shows I’ve worked for, they’ve been so diverse.

Oti looking athletic and amazing on Women’s Health (Picture: Carla Guler/Women’s Health)
The Strictly star wants black women not to be seen as ‘always angry’ (Picture: Carla Guler/Women’s Health)
Oti praised Strictly’s diverse professional dancers (Picture: Carla Guler/Women’s Health)

‘On Strictly, we have 17 professional dancers who all look completely different – they represent something unique, with (dancers) from Australia, New York, South Africa, and China. I’m proud that we have that representation.’

This year Oti is competing on the show with comedian Bill Bailey, who has turned out to be a bit of a dark horse.

On Saturday’s live show the pair performed the Quickstep to Doctor Dolittle track Talk To The Animals.

Oti is the cover star of Women’s Health (Picture: Carla Guler/Women’s Health

They crushed it with Bill earning a great score of 24.

Judge Motsi Mabuse told them: ‘I am genuinely super surprised but a good surprised. I was like “wow, that stamina, that energy”, – it was clear.

‘I enjoyed every single minute of it, well done guys, I have nothing more to say.’

Read the full Oti Mabuse interview in the Dec/Jan issue of Women’s Health UK, on sale from 4th of November, 2020.

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