Who is Gorka Marquez, Strictly Come Dancing pro?

Series 14 in 2016 was Gorka’s first turn around the Strictly dance floor. Here’s what you need to know about Alexandra Burke's dance partner.

Gorka was a Strictly Come Dancing newbie for the 2016 edition of the show, and since then he's become a cast favourite - so plenty of fans were disappointed to see that he wouldn't have a celebrity partner in 2019.

Here’s what you need to know about Gorka:

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Who is Gorka Marquez?

Spanish-born Gorka began dancing at the age of 12 and represented Spain in the World Latin Championships in 2010 and the 2012 WDSF World Cup. Gorka then danced and taught at a dance school in Guadaljara, around 40 miles outside of Madrid, before his career took him around the world.

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He’s another Strictly professional who took to the stage in the smash-hit dance show Burn the Floor, like Janette Manrara, Aljaz Skorjanec, Kevin Clifton and Karen Hauer.

On joining Strictly, Gorka said: “It’s something that every dancer dreams of and something that I always wanted to have the opportunity to do.”

Gorka’s first year on Strictly was not without its ups and downs. He and celeb partner Tameka Empson were a popular pairing and, after they were eliminated, Gorka even stood in for an unwell Brendan and partnered Anastacia for a show.

However, when Strictly went to Blackpool for the annual show from the Tower Ballroom, Gorka found himself in the headlines as the victim of an assault near a local nightclub. Luckily Gorka was not seriously injured and he was able to join the Strictly Live Tour.

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In 2017's competition, Gorka was propelled into the limelight as one of the show's stars, thanks to bagging talented celeb dancer Alexandra Burke as a partner.

They made it to the final, but Gorka's lasting memory from the series is meeting another of the celeb contestants, Gemma Atkinson, who he is now in a relationship with and earlier in the year they welcomed their first child together.

He doesn't have a partner in the 2019 series, with speculation on the reason why ranging fromhim not being tall enough for this year's lanky celebrities, to wanting more time at home with his new daughter Mia.

Whatever the reason, Gorka told the Lorraine show: "I have got the best of both sides because I am in the show with the group routines and I get to watch everyone and I love it, and I have Mia and Gemma."

Best-ever finish: Gorka and Alexandra Burke made it to the final of the 2017 show, where they were runners up..

Worst-ever finish: Gorka finished 14th with Tameka Empson in his first Strictly series, despite a promising start.

Former celebrity partners: Tameka Empson, Alexandra Burke, Katie Piper.

Did you know? Gorka was born in Bilbao, 250 miles north of Madrid.

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Photo credit: David Fisher/REX/Shutterstock

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