Daniel O'Donnell's Strictly Diary; Week 3

TVBy Daniel O'Donnell
Kristina and Daniel
Kristina and Daniel

Last Saturday night I glided across the dance floor with grace and ease. I didn’t have to think for a second about the steps, they were effortless.

If Len Goodman was there, I’m sure he would have given me “a 10 from Len”. 

Sadly, my footsteps around the ballroom had nothing to do with Strictly Come Dancing. 


I have the weekend off in London, so I went to see one of my friends, the singer John McNicholl, performing in St Joseph’s Club in Highgate.

John and his band were brilliant, and I got up and sang with them. Then I took to the floor to dance in the old style that I’m used to.


I wake up feeling exhausted, but my tiredness had nothing to do with the previous night. It was my body reacting to the stress of trying to master my Strictly performance.

Before I joined Strictly I would have said I can dance. Now I realise that social dancing doesn’t require much skill at all. I have a lot to learn.


I was up early as my coaching with Kristina began at 9am and we worked right through to 3pm. I felt for the first time that I had improved immensely.

On Monday night I went to a ball in the Mansion House, London, for the Dot Com Children’s Foundation, as Kristina is a Trustee of the charity. This is a side to Kristina that the media don’t focus on and the ball raised £80,000 for the charity.


I had the day off, so I went for a round of golf with friends at the Muswell Hill Golf Club.

I was with my brother-in-law, Michael, and a friend called Oliver Foye, who celebrated his 80th birthday. It was an enjoyable afternoon and I cleared my head.


Back in the studio I can see my first dance getting better and better. “You should be feeling proud of yourself,” Kristina tells me.

Kristina has a wonderful ability to teach. She never gets frustrated with me – and I’d say I push her as far out to the limit as she’s ever been. 


Now that I’m on my own in the London flat I have to fend for myself.

did some fruit juice and porridge for breakfast. Lunch was in a café with Kristina. Then I’ll do dinner when I get home. Okay, it might be a shepherd’s pie from the supermarket!


Over lunch with Kristina I realise she’s so easy to be around. People don’t bother us when we’re out.

Sometimes they’ll wish us luck, or tell us they’ll be voting for us. Every time I think about the live show, I feel the nerves. I say this to Kristina. 

“The most important thing on the night is to enjoy the moment, Daniel,” she says. Good advice, I’ll never have this chance again.

For Daniel's Diary from Week 1 and Week 2, just click the links