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Len Goodman


Len Goodman Biography (Courtesy Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia)


Leonard Gordon "Len" Goodman (born 25 April 1944) is a British professional ballroom dancer, dance judge, and coach. He is a leading personality on television dance programmes such as Strictly Come Dancing and Dancing with the Stars and runs a ballroom dance school in Dartford, Kent.

Early life

Goodman was born in Bethnal Green, the son of Louisa (née Eldridge) and Len Goodman, an electrician. One of his maternal great-great-grandfathers was a Polish immigrant.

Goodman moved to Blackfen near Welling (then in Kent) when he was six years old and attended Westwood Secondary Modern School where he was a member of the cricket team. He started dancing at the age of 19 after a short time as an apprentice welder (for Harland and Wolff in Woolwich). He tried dancing only in an attempt to recover from a foot injury sustained while playing football. He turned professional, won various competitions, and retired from dancing after winning the British Championships at Blackpool in his late twenties. He is a recipient of the Carl Alan Award, in recognition of outstanding contributions to dance. In 2006 and 2007, he was nominated for the Emmy Award in the Outstanding Reality/Competition Program category.

Career

As of 2011, he appears as head judge on the television dance competition Strictly Come Dancing for the BBC in the UK and one of three judges on its American adaptation, Dancing with the Stars. He has appeared in all series of each programme since 2004 and 2005 respectively.

In October 2011 Goodman appeared on the 2011 series of the UK's celebrity genealogy series Who Do You Think You Are?, in which he discovered that one of his maternal ancestors was a silk-weaver who died a pauper in the Bethnal Green workhouse. His great great grandfather Wincenty Sosnowski came from Poland, where he fought for freedom in the anti-tsarist November Uprising for which he was awarded Virtuti Militari, Poland's highest military decoration for heroism and courage.

For the 100th anniversary of the voyage and sinking of RMS Titanic, Goodman hosted a three-part BBC One documentary, shown from 30 March - 9 April 2012. It capitalised on his experience as a welder at Harland and Wolff. It was broadcast in the United States by PBS. Len interviewed descendants of survivors and introduced viewers to memorials and significant sites in the United Kingdom.

Personal life

He married his dancing partner, Cherry Kingston, but they were later divorced. He then had a longterm relationship with a woman named Lesley who, he wrote, "decided to give up nursing and live with me and help me run the dance school "? which was great, because she was full of ideas. Things rolled along pretty nicely for a year until out of the blue Lesley dropped a bombshell. She was pregnant!" Goodman was 36 at this time. Lesley, he wrote, was the ex-wife of "a bloke called Wilf Pine who had managed [the band] Black Sabbath. Lesley and Wilf got married in Connecticut...." Goodman and Lesley's son James William Goodman was born January 26, 1981, but at age 12 moved with his mother back to her native Isle of Wight after Lesley and Goodman broke up. As of 2012, James teaches Latin and ballroom dancing at his father's Goodman Dance Centre. On December 30, 2012, Goodman married his companion of over 10 years, Sue Barrett, a 47-year-old dance teacher, in a small ceremony at a London dining club Mosimann's.

Goodman is a West Ham United fan and was featured on the BBC football magazine show Football Focus on 26 September 2009.

Goodman was diagnosed with prostate cancer in March 2009, which was treated surgically at a London hospital.



This biography article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License.It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Len Goodman". Reality TV World is not responsible for any errors or omissions this article may contain.


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