Charles Venn on Strictly

Who is Strictly's Charles Venn? Find out everything you need to know

Charles Venn is doing so well on Strictly!

Emmy Griffiths

Charles Venn and his Strictly Come Dancing dancing partner, Karen Clifton, certainly showed what they were worth recently, when they place joint second on the leaderboard with nines across the board from judges thanks to their incredible Street Commercial dance routine to Get Up Off That Thing. But how much do you know about the hugely successful actor? Find out everything you need to know, from Charles' career to his family life…

Early life

Charles was born 24 June 1973. The actor has previously opened up about growing up on Mozart estate in London, telling Flavour magazine: "It was a tough area at that particular time. I was just a regular kid growing up, of Nigerian origin, and I was always a bit of a live one at school. I always remember saying I wanted to be a stunt man, I never harboured ambitions to be an actor. Back then I was more about athletics acting didn't dawn on me until I was about eighteen; I was at Queen’s Park with a friend, we concocted a scene and I guess I just lived in the moment." Charles went on to study perform arts at West London College before handing his first major role as Curtis Alexander in Dream Team.  

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Acting career

Charles is perhaps best known for his role as Ray Dixon on EastEnders between 2011 and 2013. He also starred as Tremaine Gidigbi in Footballers Wives, and has appeared in the Christmas special if Miranda, and is a series regular on Casualty as Jacob Masters. The star has also been a part of blockbusters hits including The Dark Knight and Bourne Ultimatum.

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Strictly Come Dancing

Charles revealed how much he was looking forward to being a part of Strictly back in August, writing: "It truly is a pleasure to be a contestant on Strictly Come Dancing, to be associated with a show that has such a huge following excites and scares me in equal measure! Dancing on Strictly is going to be quite a challenge but life's all about testing yourself so there's lots to look forward to, let the games begin." Joking about the costumes, he added: "Some of the costumes certainly do not leave much to the imagination, but they mostly look good I feel. I'll definitely have to do more sit ups though, just to fit in them!"

Speaking about his amazing score during his couple's choice dance with Karen, he told Digital Spy: "I nearly cried up there. I thought, 'That's positive', but for the last couple of weeks I've had positive comments but they didn't necessarily reflect in the scores. So when Craig gave a nine, it was surreal. To get a nine from Darcey, then a nine from Shirley and then a nine from Alfonso, it was like, 'Woah, is this really happening?'"

READ: Strictly's Dr Ranj reveals Janette Manrara is helping him with anxiety

Is Charles married?

Charles has said he is married, and has two children, Marcel, 22, and 17-year-old Renee. Speaking to The Sun about the Strictly curse, he joked: "I find the whole Strictly curse is quite funny. I am not really a believer of the hocus pocus, it's nonsense. Me and my wife right now are very happy. She's looking forward to it; she's been going through dances with me." Renee is an actress herself, and appeared in The Method of Love.