AJ Odudu's mother exudes pride as she says watching daughter on Strictly is like winning lottery 


AJ Odudu’s mother Florence has spoken of her pride at watching her daughter blossom on Strictly Come Dancing.

Television presenter AJ, 33, is currently competing on the show with professional dancer Kai Widdrington, 26, and AJ has impressed the judges with her skills on the dance floor.

And now, AJ’s mother, 66, has said it’s ‘incredible’ watching her daughter on the BBC ballroom dance contest, saying she feels like she’s ‘won the lottery’.

Family affair: AJ Odudu's mother Florence, 66, has spoken of her pride at watching her daughter blossom on Strictly Come Dancing

Family affair: AJ Odudu’s mother Florence, 66, has spoken of her pride at watching her daughter blossom on Strictly Come Dancing

The broadcaster’s parent was a Strictly fan long before her famous daughter appeared on the programme.

So she is delighted to be watching her offspring take part on the show and even be tipped to win the Glitterball trophy.

Florence told the Mirror: ‘Watching AJ on Strictly is incredible, it’s like I’ve won the lottery. I am so proud of her.’

Born to perform: Television presenter AJ, 33, is currently competing on the show with professional dancer Kai Widdrington, 26

Born to perform: Television presenter AJ, 33, is currently competing on the show with professional dancer Kai Widdrington, 26

She added: ‘I didn’t know AJ could dance, not the way she does now, no. She seemed to have something naturally and she has always liked performing at home.

‘I would have loved to have sent her to dance lessons but we just didn’t have the money.’

Florence moved to Blackburn, Lancashire from Nigeria at the age of 18 in the 1970s and had an arranged marriage.

Heartfelt words: And now, AJ's mother has said it's 'incredible' watching her daughter on the BBC ballroom dance contest, saying she feels like she's 'won the lottery'

Heartfelt words: And now, AJ’s mother has said it’s ‘incredible’ watching her daughter on the BBC ballroom dance contest, saying she feels like she’s ‘won the lottery’

Yay! Judges Shirley Ballas, Motsi Mabuse , Anton Du Beke and Craig Revel Horwood gave gushing feedback with hard-to-please Craig simply saying: 'Amazing!' on Saturday

Yay! Judges Shirley Ballas, Motsi Mabuse , Anton Du Beke and Craig Revel Horwood gave gushing feedback with hard-to-please Craig simply saying: ‘Amazing!’ on Saturday

She and her husband of 40 years James share eight children and, while she was unaware of AJ’s talent for dance, she always knew she was going to be a star.

Florence explained: ‘We had a cousin who came to stay.

‘And she loved make-up, she put it on AJ’s lips and she really liked posing for the photos.

She added that a teacher told her AJ much preferred socialising at school than concentrating on academics.

And Florence, who has been gifted tickets to the Strictly tour by her children, says AJ inherited her work ethic from her, saying her tough childhood in war-torn Nigeria taught life wasn’t easy.

She recalled the moment they fled their family home in the town of Sapel one night as her pregnant mother carried their belongings while Florence walked miles hand-in-hand with her brother to the safety of Jesse Town.

While her parents could not afford to give her an education, Florence and her husband ensured all of their children were university educated in a bid to give them a better life, instilling in them that they must work hard to achieve their dreams.

Champs! The presenter and Kai performed the Charleston to Don't Bring Lulu by Dorothy Provine and scored 39 after making it through to the half-point in the competition

Champs! The presenter and Kai performed the Charleston to Don’t Bring Lulu by Dorothy Provine and scored 39 after making it through to the half-point in the competition

She added that she often took her offspring with her to her multiple cleaning jobs to show them how to work.

And while she’s delighted to be watching Florence on Strictly, she refused to comment on speculation surrounding her daughter’s love life.

She said AJ’s partner Kai ‘seems lovely’ and is a ‘good dancer’ who ‘looks good’.

AJ added to the Sunday Mirror that she and Kai ‘get on so well’ but are ‘focused on the Strictly experience as a whole’. 

Meanwhile, AJ burst into tears as she topped the leaderboard with her rumoured beau and dance partner Kai during Saturday’s episode of Strictly.

The pair performed the Charleston to Don’t Bring Lulu by Dorothy Provine and scored an incredible 39 after making it through to the half-point in the competition.

Judges Shirley Ballas, Motsi Mabuse, Anton Du Beke and Craig Revel Horwood gave gushing feedback with hard-to-please Craig simply saying: ‘Amazing!’ after the performance.

Overwhelmed: An emotional AJ burst into tears as she topped the leaderboard with her rumoured beau and partner Kai during Saturday's episode of Strictly Come Dancing

Overwhelmed: An emotional AJ burst into tears as she topped the leaderboard with her rumoured beau and partner Kai during Saturday’s episode of Strictly Come Dancing

An excitable Motsi said in her comments: ‘Oh my goodness, I feel so proud of you! It was authentic, the acting was great, you came in at a high level but you have sat on that high level and gone even further!’  

Shirley added: ‘I don’t have a paddle big enough for you that was amazing!’, while Anton said: ‘It was incredible I loved it!’ 

The pair scored three tens and topped the leaderboard with an incredible 39.   

Breaking down in tears in her chat after the dance, AJ said: ‘This week has been so hard, when you fall a lot it’s so hard, you lose confidence in yourself, but Kai manages to pull the confidence out of me and I’m so happy.’ 

It comes after insiders claimed to The Mail On Sunday that AJ and Kai are an item.

Strictly Come Dancing’s results show airs on Sunday 7th November at 7:15pm on BBC One. 

Upset: Breaking down in tears in her chat after the dance, AJ said: 'This week has been so hard, when you fall a lot it's so hard, you lose confidence in yourself'

Upset: Breaking down in tears in her chat after the dance, AJ said: ‘This week has been so hard, when you fall a lot it’s so hard, you lose confidence in yourself’

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.