Maisie Smith takes a late night cigarette break during Strictly tour rehearsals

Maisie took a break from rehearsals
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Maisie will be paired up with Strictly ballroom professional Kai Widdrington for the upcoming shows.

TV presenter AJ Odudu was originally partnered up with Kai but due to an ongoing foot injury, which meant she had to pull out of the 2021 final, she also cannot be in the tour.

Due to this, Maisie, who was a contestant in 2020, has replaced AJ.

The 20 year old will also be dancing alongside John and Johannes Radebe as well as Rose Ayling-Ellis and Giovanni Pernice, from the 2021 series.

Other 2021 contestants involved are Sara Davies and Aljaz Skorjanec, Tilly and Nikita Kuzmin and Rhys Stephenson and Nancy Xu.

The Strictly tour starts next week
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Extra professional dancers who will be performing are, Amy Dowden, Neil Jones, Luba Mushtuk and Jowita Przystal.

Janette Manrara will be hosting the tour after she began hosting It Takes Two.

Judge Craig Revel Horwood will be choreographing, directing and performing in each of the 33 shows.

The tour will be Maisie's first gig since her last scenes for EastEnders aired in December, after she announced her departure in October.

Maisie laughed along with her colleagues
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AJ shared the news in a statement as she said: "I’m devastated not to be able to take part in the Strictly tour due to injury.

"I had hoped for one last dance with Kai, but I must obviously follow the medical advice. I wish my Strictly family the very best of luck on the road and I’ll definitely be there to cheer them on."

Meanwhile, Maisie was delighted to be getting another chance on the dance floor, despite wishing AJ a speedy recovery.

She said: "I’m thrilled to be asked to restart my Strictly journey on this year’s arena tour. Kai and I will be dancing the quickstep and the samba – I can’t wait for rehearsals to start next week.

Maisie will be dancing alongside Kai Widdrington
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"It will be a joy to dance with everyone and so great to see my EastEnders friend Rose again. I wish AJ a speedy recovery."

The live tour will begin Birmingham on January 20th, before travelling to Leeds, Newcastle, Manchester, Sheffield, Liverpool, Glasgow and Nottingham and finishing at London’s O2 Arena on February 13th.

Fellow EastEnders actress Rose Ayling-Ellis was crowned winner of the latest series alongside her professional partner Giovanni Pernice.