'Strictly Come Dancing' Backstage Secrets Will Get You SO Excited For The First Live Show

Ray Burmiston/BBC

Tonight's the night, friends. The night when people who've never set foot on a dancefloor declare themselves assured experts on the nuances of the Viennese waltz. The night when beginner ballroom classes across the nation become mysteriously booked up. The night that transforms actors and newsreaders and YouTubers into glittering ballroom stars. I've collected some Strictly Come Dancing backstage secrets, because tonight brings the first live show of 2018, and who isn't deliriously excited?

The Celebrities And Pros Hang Out Offscreen...

Joe Sugg celebrated his 27th birthday on the same night of the Strictly launch show, the Radio Times reports. And he marked the occasion by inviting this year's celebrities and their professional partners round for a huge viewing party (on an even huger projector screen). Lovely!

...But That Doesn't Mean The 'Strictly Curse' Is Real

Take Vick Hope, for example. Rumours circulated that Hope broke up with former boyfriend Tom Rosenthal ahead of her Strictly debut — and it turns out those rumours were completely false. "It’s all made up, it’s all just incorrect," Hope told the Radio Times, adding, "They’re writing about my ex-boyfriend as though I dumped him or something. We broke up a year ago; it had nothing to do with this. It’s just really weird. I just hope people don’t believe it." Thankfully, the rumours aren't marring her Strictly experence: Hope told the magazine, "I feel like I’ve got the opportunity to do something that every little girl has wanted."

Not All The Celebrities Get The Same Amount Of Training

Most notably? Paralympian Lauren Steadman, who's just won paratriathlon gold at the ITU World Championships in Australia, as the BBC reports. Her Strictly partner AJ Pritchard told the Radio Times just how long Steadman's had to rehearse her first routine, thanks to her athletic schedule: "Two days. Two days to learn a full routine and prepare yourself mentally to stand in front of 12 million people live and be judged by four judges." Sounds beyond daunting — but, as Pritchard pointed out, "That’s why we’ve got an Olympic athlete here, because she can deal with the pressure."

There's A Terrifying Amount Of False Eyelashes Backstage

According to the Mirror, there's a "large sack of false eyelashes" in the makeup room, which is a truly horrifying visual. Sounds exorbitant? Not so: the makeup artists reportedly use "hundreds of pairs" each series. Please keep the poor soul who has to repeatedly empty bins full of of discarded eyelashes in your thoughts.

The Celebrities Are Racking Up Injuries...

Danny John-Jules told the Mirror that a foot injury forced him to halt rehearsals, saying, "Mother Nature’s having a bit of a dig at me." Susannah Constantine revealed she's taking supplements prescribed to "old, knackered horses who need their joints and tendons oiled." And Kate Silverton is merrily sharing photos of her "battered and bruised" feet on Instagram.

...And The Pros Aren't Safe From Injury Either

Think the Strictly professionals' dancing expertise immunises them against the woes faced by the celebrities? Not quite: after all, their inexperienced partners can be liabilities of their own. Case in point: Seann Walsh, who dropped his partner Katya Jones in rehearsal, as the Radio Times reports. The pair broadcast the incident on their Instagram stories, and the clips featured a very audible — and very painful sounding — thud.

There's A Dedicated Staff Member To Prevent Wardrobe Malfunctions

No unzipped fly or errant bra strap will ever cross the Strictly stage, according to 2014 contestant Scott Mills: he told the Mirror, "There was a man just to check that my fly was not undone." Mills elaborated, "The make-up artist will do final checks a bit before you go down the stairs. Then a man was like, 'Just checking your flies'." Wonder how said man describes his job on LinkedIn?

Hopefully those juicy tidbits have whetted your appetite for the first Strictly Come Dancing live show, which airs (as you've probably gleaned from the above tweet) on BBC One at 6.15 p.m. Just try to focus on the dancing, and not the sacks of false eyelashes lurking backstage.