Len Goodman, judge on ABC’s ‘Dancing With the Stars,’ is a consistent presence on the star-studded dance show.

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A look into the life of Len Goodman – what inspired and drew him into the world of dance

‘Dancing with the Stars’ has been a hit show for ABC since 2005, and will be dropping its new season soon. A constant for the show, apart from the scintillating dance displays, has been Leonard Gordon Goodman, popularly known as Len Goodman, on the judging panel. After giving the show a miss last year, he’s back as the head judge on Season 30.

Len is an legendary professional ballroom dancer, dance judge and coach, who has appeared as head judge on ‘Strictly Come Dancing’ (2004-2016) and ‘Dancing with the Stars’ (since 2005). Len also runs a ballroom dance school of his own in Dartford, England.



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Early life and career

Len was born in London and moved to Blackfen at the age of 6, and attended Westwood Secondary Modern School. He is an ardent cricket fan ever since his school days. Len started dancing at the age of 19, after his doctor recommended it as therapy for a foot injury. For something that started out on a whim, Goodman eventually turned professional, won various competitions and, retired from dancing after winning the ‘British Championships’ at Blackpool in his late 20s.

He is a recipient of the Carl Alan Award in recognition of his outstanding contribution to dance. A show in which he appeared was nominated for the Emmy Award in the Outstanding Reality/Competition Program category.



Personal life

Goodman has a son with ex-wife James, and who teaches Latin and ballroom dancing at Goodman Dance Centre.

On 30 December 2012, Goodman married 47-year-old Sue Barrett, his lover of over 10 years and a dance teacher, in a small ceremony at a London dining club. He is a West Ham United fan and was featured on the BBC football show ‘Football Focus’ in September, 2009.

Goodman is back for Season 30 after skipping Season 29 due to Covid travel restrictions. Fans will be happy to see him back at the judges’ table this time around. Derek Hough, who stepped in for Goodman last year, will also be returning as a judge.

Season 30 of ‘DWTS season 30 will premiere September 20, 2021. ABC announced the premiere date on July 15 as part of the network’s overall fall lineup.

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