Louie Spence | Presenter | Host
Star of Pineapple Dance Studios and Dancing on Ice Judge, Louie Spence is one of the dance industry’s most unique talents with a reputation that precedes him.
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Known affectionately as ‘Lay out Lou with liquid legs and a lisp’, he attributes his astounding flexibility to his privileged council estate upbringing, where his Mum, Pat, used to fold him up into an MFI cabin bed.
His two older sisters attended Doreen Cliffs local dance school in Essex and when faced with the choice of going to work with his Dad at John’s Tyres and Exhausts, or to attend dance school with his sisters, Louie donned his lycra leotard and high kicked his ass off to become a professional dancer.
Convinced of his raw talent and with the urging of his dance teacher, his parents took out a second mortgage to send him to the prestigious Italia Conti Performing Arts School. No sooner than you can say grande plié, young Louie landed his West End debut in Bugsy Malone aged 13.
He was then talent spotted and ask to join BBC’s primetime Hot Shoe Show, dancing alongside Wayne Sleep and Bonnie Langford. He soon caught the attention of the renowned London Studio Centre and won an unprecedented full three year scholarship; but it was his time with Teresa Kerr in Cambridge that truly inspired him to realise his full dance potential.
After graduating with full honours in all aspects of dance, Louie back-flipped himself into the original Award-Winning Cast of Miss Saigon, where he helped to create the show’s thrilling acrobatics.
He was snapped up by Italy’s RAI UNO TV and moved to Rome to join the legendary TV show, Fantastico. This earned him the coveted title of Primo Ballerino and he danced with such stars as Tina Turner, Ray Charles, Whitney Houston and Stevie Wonder. Whilst in Italy he picked up the language and still speaks fluent Italian.
He became restless and, in search of new challenges, left RAI TV and returned to London to pursue a career as a commercial dancer. During the 90’s his twinkle toes never touched the ground as he toured and worked with Take That, E17, 2 Unlimited, Boyzone, Eternal, Björk, Kavanagh, Kim Mazelle and Jocelyn Brown. He was one of only five professional male dancers selected to accompany the Spice Girls on their debut SPICEWORLD tour travelling the globe for a whole year.
On his return to London, Louie joined the West End cast of Cats as Magical Mr. Mistoffelees (a name he has great difficultly pronouncing) and for a year wore a Lycra cat suit with a yak’s-hair wig and tail.
He was saved from clawing his eyes out when asked to be part of the Pet Shop Boys experimental debut hit musical Closer to Heaven. This was to be his swan-song from musicals as he became disheartened by the West End’s gruelling eight show weeks for the less than satisfactory financial reward.
Encouraged by friends and colleagues, Louie decided to hang up his dancing shoes and start Edit Agency at Pineapple Dance Studios where he is currently Artistic Director.
His critical eye and high dance standards meant that he only recruited the crème de la crème of dancers and choreographers for the biggest names in the business such as Kylie, Mariah Carey, Robbie Williams, Will Young, Jamelia, Sugar Babes, Emma Bunton, Danni Minogue, Rachael Stevens, Lemar, Brian Mcfadden, to name but a few.
Edit Agency quickly amassed a great reputation and it was inevitable that television would come knocking. Louie’s no nonsense personality, with his in-your-face delivery proved too tempting for the executives at Trouble TV. They cast him as their Boot Camp mentor for three series on the hugely successful TV show, Bump N Grind. It was also aired on BBC America and other North American channels.
This began the snowballing of his television career as he went on to choreograph Channel 4’s Big Brother Panto; he also appeared as a dance expert on E4’s Big Brother’s Big Mouth, Channel 5’s Battle Pop Stars, My Bare Lady for Fox America and Bravo. Louie has recently completed his second series as a judge on Sky One’s Cirque de Celebrité.
In July, 2008 Louie was cast as one of the trio of judges on the successful NBC prime-time show 'Celebrity Circus', presented by Joey Fatone. Contestants on the show included actress Stacey Dash and model and actress Rachel Hunter. The first series was won by actor Antonio Sabato Jr. During the first season of 'Celebrity Circus' Louie was voted by Hollywood.com as one of the Top Ten Reality Show Judges in America.