Winkleman at the 2008 BAFTA Television Awards
|Born||Claudia Anne Winkleman
15 January 1972
|Residence||Westminster, London, England|
|Occupation||Television presenter, film critic, radio personality, journalist|
|Known for||Strictly Come Dancing: It Takes Two (2004–10)
Comic Relief (2009–)
Sport Relief (2010–)
Strictly Come Dancing (2012–)
The Great British Sewing Bee (2014–)
|Spouse(s)||Kris Thykier (m. 2000)|
|Relatives||Nicholas Lloyd (stepfather)
Sophie Winkleman (half-sister)
Claudia Anne Winkleman (born 15 January 1972) is an English television presenter, film critic, radio personality, and journalist, best known for her current work with the BBC.
Since 2010, she has co-presented Strictly Come Dancing's main results show on Sunday nights with Tess Daly on BBC One and since 2014 has been a main co-host alongside Daly on the Saturday night live shows, due to the departure of Sir Bruce Forsyth. Between 2004 and 2010, Winkleman presented Strictly Come Dancing: It Takes Two daily on BBC Two, but was replaced in 2011 by Zoë Ball.
Winkleman is also the presenter of Film..., where she replaced Jonathan Ross after his move to ITV in 2010. She was the co-presenter of Let's Dance For Comic Relief for its first two series in 2009 and 2010. She co-hosted the show with Steve Jones. She has often hosted the Comic Relief and Sport Relief annual telethons on BBC One. Since April 2013, she has presented the BBC Two series The Great British Sewing Bee.
Winkleman was born in London to a Jewish family, the daughter of Eve Pollard, former editor of the Sunday Express, and Barry Winkleman (born 1939), former publisher of The Times Atlas of the World. Her parents divorced when she was three, and both remarried in 1979. Her mother married Sir Nicholas Lloyd, former editor of the Daily Express, and her father married children's author Cindy Black.
Winkleman's half-sister from her father's second marriage is actress Sophie Winkleman, wife of Lord Frederick Windsor. She also has a younger half-brother, Oliver Lloyd, from her mother's second marriage. Raised in Hampstead, London, Winkleman was educated at the City of London School for Girls and New Hall, Cambridge, obtaining an MA Hons in Art History.
Winkleman's first major television job was in 1991, on the regional discussion programme Central Weekend. In 1992, she began frequently to appear in the long-running BBC series Holiday, and this continued throughout the mid-1990s. This culminated in a special documentary in which she travelled around the world for 34 days reporting from Japan, India, Costa Rica and Dubai. Throughout this period, she appeared as a reporter on other shows, particularly This Morning interviewing various celebrities. During the late 1990s, Winkleman presented a number of programmes on smaller digital channels. She had a stint on the cable channel L!VE TV, but soon left to pursue other projects. In 1996, Winkleman co-hosted the Granada programme Pyjama Party on ITV with Katie Puckrik and Michelle Kelly.
Winkleman also presented a number of gameshows including the dating show Three's a Crowd, LWT show Talking Telephone Numbers, the second series of Granada TV show God's Gift and Fanorama. In 1997 she was the co-host of children's Saturday morning TV show Tricky. She was also an occasional team captain on a gameshow called HeadJam, hosted by Vernon Kay.
Between 2002 and 2004, Winkleman began her first daily TV role when she hosted the BBC Three Entertainment update show Liquid News, taking over from Christopher Price on the now defunct BBC Choice. She shared the presenting duties with Colin Paterson, and later Paddy O'Connell. The show featured celebrity interviews.
In 2003, Fame Academy appointed Winkleman to present a daily update show on BBC Three, in conjunction with its second series. She repeated the show in 2005 for the much shorter celebrity version Comic Relief Does Fame Academy. Also in 2005, Winkleman co-hosted The House of Tiny Tearaways, a BBC Three reality TV show. She also began hosting Strictly Come Dancing: It Takes Two, a supplementary programme to Strictly Come Dancing, taking over from Justin Lee-Collins.
More recently, Winkleman has presented a number of prime time programmes. In 2007, she took over from Cat Deeley as the main host for the third series of Comic Relief Does Fame Academy, co-hosting with Patrick Kielty. She also presented the Eurovision Song Contest. She co-hosted coverage of the inaugural Eurovision Dance Contest 2007 alongside Graham Norton for BBC One in September of that year. She co-presented the UK selection process for the Eurovision Song Contest 2008 called Eurovision: Your Decision, this time accompanied by Eurovision stalwart Terry Wogan. In March 2008, Winkleman rekindled her partnership with Kielty when the pair hosted the final leg of Sport Relief 2008.
In 2007, Winkleman was the face of Sky Movie Premiere's coverage of the 79th Academy Awards, repeating it for the 80th Academy Awards in 2008. The show was broadcast live in conjunction with the ceremony itself, running right through the night into the early hours of the morning. Winkleman has made many guest appearances on panel and talk shows, including: Never Mind the Buzzcocks, Would I Lie to You?, Have I Got News for You, Friday Night with Jonathan Ross and Lily Allen and Friends. In February 2008, she appeared on the British version of the comedy improvisational show Thank God You're Here, hosted by Paul Merton.
In March 2009, Winkleman was announced as the host of the new series of Hell's Kitchen on ITV1. She fronted the nightly show live from the restaurant in East London in its fourth series in the spring. On 14 November 2009, she appeared on the main show of Strictly Come Dancing to present backstage, due to main presenter Bruce Forsyth being on sick leave. She co-hosted the show with Tess Daly and guest presenter Ronnie Corbett.
On 29 March 2010, she was named as one of the new co-presenters of the Film programme, replacing Jonathan Ross. The Guardian stated, through her recent hosting of Sky Television's coverage of The Oscars, Winkleman had "proved both a passionate and engaging advocate of cinema", while her husband Kris Thykier is a film producer with credits on several mainstream releases.
In 2015, she appeared on The Big Fat Anniversary Quiz. In May 2015, she appeared on an episode of Watchdog on BBC One. In November 2016, Winkleman presented the one-off BBC special Bublé at the BBC with Michael Bublé.
Strictly Come Dancing
It is through her work on Strictly Come Dancing: It Takes Two that Winkleman has gained the most public recognition. The programme, which started in 2004, was devised as a companion show to run conjoined with the second series of Strictly Come Dancing, and continues to run to date. It follows a similar format to the one Winkleman made popular on Fame Academy, and sees the presenter deliberating and dissecting the ins and outs of the main competition, accompanied by an array of dance experts, assorted guests and the competitors themselves. The show is aired every weekday throughout the course of the series at 6:30pm on BBC Two. The show's four judges also appear regularly on the programme.
In 2012, it was announced that Zoë Ball would be the regular presenter of Strictly Come Dancing: It Takes Two, with Winkleman's involvement in Series 10 of the show being limited to co-hosting the Sunday night results show with Tess Daly. Winkleman continues to host the Sunday night results show for Strictly Come Dancing.
Winkleman started her journalism career as a travel writer, with columns about her various worldwide excursions. She did so in The Sunday Times and The Independent, but also contributed to the free daily London paper Metro in a similar capacity. As her television career and family evolved, she travelled less, and began to write more general work, opinion-led lifestyle journalism about womanhood, sex and relationships. She wrote for Cosmopolitan and Tatler amongst others. Between 2005 and 2008, she wrote a regular weekly column for The Independent called Take It From Me.
In April and May 2008, Winkleman hosted a six-part comedy quiz series taking a humorous look into the week's celebrity gossip, called Hot Gossip. The show was broadcast on a Saturday afternoon on BBC Radio 2; points were awarded to those who dished out dirt. The show featured many famous pundits, including Will Smith, Phil Nichol, Jo Caulfield, Rufus Hound and Jonathan Ross' brother, Paul.
She hosted a weekly show on BBC Radio 2 every Friday night between 10pm and midnight called Claudia Winkleman's Arts Show consisting of interviews with people from the arts world, as well as reviews and debate. In July 2010, Winkleman sat in for Dermot O'Leary. She covered for Ken Bruce on three occasions during 2012 and 2013.
Charity and other work
In 2007, she manned telephones at the BT Tower for the Disasters Emergency Committee in response to problems in Darfur. In May 2007, she helped relaunch The National Missing Persons Campaign, and also supported a Christmas campaign by the charity Refuge, which aimed to stop domestic violence.
On 18 March 2011, Winkleman was one of the presenters of BBC's Comic Relief. In 2012, she was one of the judges and the host of the FilmNation shorts at the British Film Institute, which as part of the Cultural Olympiad for London 2012, encouraged young people aged 14–25 to get involved in film making.
On 31 October 2014, Winkleman's eight-year-old daughter Matilda was taken to hospital after being seriously injured when her Halloween costume caught fire. Winkleman stated that the costume brushed against a candle. Winkleman was subsequently replaced by Zoë Ball as host of Strictly Come Dancing for three weeks. This incident prompted the government to tighten the flame retardant standards of Halloween costumes.
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- Hughes, Laura (2015-12-09). "Rules on flammability of children's fancy dress costumes to be tightened". Telegraph.co.uk. The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 2015-12-11.