17 Jan 19
The Scottish Sun
DANCING On Ice judge Christopher Dean has insisted Gemma Collins is no diva and she won’t quit the show after host Holly Willoughby claimed she lacked “professionalism”.
The Torvill and Dean legend and show trainer Karen Barber defended “hard working” Gemma, 37, and said she could have walked at anytime, but has stuck with the gruelling series.
Gemma Collins has been accused of lacking ‘professionalism’ on Dancing On Ice
Gemma, who is partnered with Matt Evers, was accused of “napping” during rehearsals and leaving Sunday’s live show 25 minutes early.
But speaking at Cirque du Soleil’s premiere Of Totem at the Royal Albert Hall on Wednesday, Christopher, 60, was full of praise for the reality star and told The Sun Online: “I’m just happy that she got to this stage.
“There has been ample opportunity for her to walk away from it and she’s still here.”
Karen, 57, added: “When we’ve come into contact with Gemma in a coaching situation she’s respectful and she’s engaged. And you can see she has put the work in.
Karen Barber and Christopher Dean insisted the Towie star has been on her best behaviour when she has worked with them
“So the other stuff going around I have not experienced it, so I cannot comment.”
Speaking on ITV’s This Morning earlier this week, presenter Holly, 37, admitted she had noticed a lack of commitment behind the scenes.
She said: “I love Gemma. I’m a big fan of hers. I love her on the show.
“But I do think there has to be a bit of professionalism that comes into any work you do, just a bit of pride.”
Gemma is partnered with Matt Evers and was accused of ‘napping’ and leaving Sunday’s show early
Co-host Phillip Schofield, 56, said Gemma — whose debut routine drew an extra million viewers — held up the “whole studio” on Sunday afternoon by “having a nap”.
However, her partner Matt telephoned ITV’s Lorraine on Wednesday and spoke to The Sun’s Dan Wootton live on air.
The pro skater, 42, defended the Towie star and told Dan and host Lorraine Kelly: “I’m on my way into work right now and (Gemma) is about 15 minutes behind me.
[bc_video video_id=”5989963374001″ account_id=”5067014667001″ player_id=”default” embed=”in-page” padding_top=”56%” autoplay=”” min_width=”0px” max_width=”640px” width=”100%” height=”100%” caption=”Gemma Collins’ Dancing on Ice partner Matt Evers shuts down reports of her diva behaviour and says she’s back in rehearsals today “]
Holly and Phil claimed she was sleeping backstage and lacked professionalism
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“She is coming into the rink today, we have a double session planned, she had Tuesday off, but I have a fantastic routine for her.”
Matt addressed reports that Gemma had been sleeping on the job and continued: “She did not have a nap!
“We all want to take a nap, we’re there all day, we do camera work and then a dress rehearsal, by the time the show hits at 6pm, you are exhausted.”
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