Johannes Radebe looking to camera. Photo by Elliott Wilcox

Johannes Radebe in Kinky Boots

Johannes Radebe stars as Lola in Kinky Boots in a new UK tour.

Johannes Radebe is one of Britain’s best-loved dancers and choreographers, dancing as a professional on hit BBC talent show Strictly Come Dancing.

Johannes is currently touring the UK in Johannes Radebe: House of Jojo.

Johannes’s early life and career

Born in the township Zamdela Sasolburg, South Africa, Johannes Radebe started dancing when he was seven.  He was fascinated by the discipline and the glamour of Ballroom and Latin.  Over the next 13 years, Johannes competed in local competitions, climbing up the Latin ranks with top honours, and eventually adding Ballroom and other dance styles, such as African Contemporary and Jazz. He became a finalist at national dance competitions and received an invitation to compete internationally in St Petersburg, Russia.

Johannes Radebe’s professional credits

At the age of 21, Johannes left South Africa to work on the internationally renowned Italian cruise liner Costa.  Persistence and experience saw this young, vibrant South African given more responsibilities including choreographing, teaching new dancers, and then eventually being promoted to Dance Captain.  In 2018, he was invited to join the debut season of the international hit show, Dancing With The Stars, in South Africa. 

Johannes toured the world in the international dance show Burn The Floor before being headhunted by Strictly Come Dancing.  He moved to the UK to dance on the flagship BBC show.  In his second series, he was partnered with Catherine Tyldesley and danced the first same-sex routine with fellow Strictly star Graziano Di Prima. 

In 2020 he danced with actress Caroline Quentin and in 2021, he and his celebrity partner, John Waite, made history by being the first all-male partnership to compete on the show. The pair made it to the final and recently won the British LGBT Award for Media Moment of the Year. In 2022, he was partnered with comedian and actress Ellie Taylor, and made it to the semi-finals in the sixth series with partner Annabel Croft in 2023. His first book Jojo: Finally Home was published on 7 September 2023 and became a Sunday Times best-seller.

It was recently announced that South African film company Arrested Industries run by Anthony Kimble, and Oscar nominated Helena Spring Films, have optioned Jojo: Finally Home for a film, with further details to come. 

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📷 Main photo: Johannes Radebe. Photo by Elliott Wilcox

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