It’s a statement that will have female fans of Strictly swooning.

“Yes, I am a romantic, I can’t help it,” says Graziano Di Prima as we discuss his highly-personal new show which comes to Blackburn on Sunday.

Graziano has quickly established himself as one of the most popular professional dancers on the top rated Saturday night dance show, having joined four seasons ago.

Bury Times: Gaziano Di Prima in rehearsal for Believe (Picture: Pamela Raith)

Now he’s on the road with Believe, a spectacular dance show based around his life.

“What the UK has given me in the past few years is incredible,” said Graziano. “The love I have received has been enormous and I want to say thank you for that with this beautiful show. I want to give fans the best night they can possibly have.”

Believe features Graziano and his wife (sorry girls) fellow professional Giada Lini and an all-star company and it traces his life from growing up among the vines on a small farm in Sicily to international stardom.

“For the first time I’m telling my story about a boy from a vineyard who ended up on a TV show,” he said. “I come from a very humble family in Sicily but I started on this remarkable journey, I met my wife, we started dancing together and this big show arrived which changed my life completely.”

Believe opened at the beginning of March and continues to tour the UK well into April and the response has been phenomenal.

“Because it is a brand new show you never know what to expect,” said Graziano. “But we have been getting standing ovations from the very first night. We were unprepared for that. It has been very emotional.”

Graziano’s rise to stardom is all the more remarkable because of his background.

“There is no history of dancing or performing in my family,” he said. “From the beginning the main thing for me has been to make my dad and my family proud.

“When I was young my mum encouraged me and my brothers and sisters and we went to a very small dance school that had opened in the village and I loved it.

“I knew even then that was what I wanted to do and I think gradually my dad began to realise that this was my passion.

“We didn’t have a lot of money and lessons and competitions were expensive so I would work from a very early age to help out. I started to teach dancing and I’d work with my father on the vineyard.”

Although dancing was clearly Graziano’s passion, he didn’t make it too obvious.

“I soon realised that I was the only one at school who loved to dance,” he said. “So although I had this great passion I tried to hide it. I was really two different people - Graziano in school and then Graziano out of school, the dancer. After school I could be myself.”

Graziano’s talent shone through and he soon took part in competitions, often winning, and his career path developed.

It was through dance that he met Giada, the love of his life.

Bury Times: Gaziano Di Prima in rehearsal for Believe (Picture: Pamela Raith)

“I knew I wanted to marry her when she came to be with me in London,” he said.

“We were married almost two years ago,” he said. “We got married in the village I grew up in. We held the wedding in the village square and everyone turned out. It was beautiful, something I’ll never forget.”

You might think that having two professional dancers as bride and groom the first dance would have been something special.

“That might have been the plan but no-one told the wedding dress designer,” Graziano laughed. “It was so tight all I could do was lift Giada up and spin her around. We couldn’t do anything else.”

Graziano admits that Believe is very much a love story - both his love for dancing and his love for Giada.

“I am romantic,” he said. “If I am telling my story in this show, Giada is such an important part of that.”

Bury Times: Gaziano Di Prima and wife Giada in rehearsal for Believe                                                 (Picture: Pamela Raith)

As well as being his partner in the show, Giada has also helped choreograph the production.

“We had three weeks to work with the dancers to bring the show together which doesn’t sound like a lot of time but we had been working on the ideas well before that.

“Everyone has worked so hard.”

On Strictly, Graziano has been partnered with Vick Hope, Kym Marsh, Judy Love and last year Zara McDermott but has yet to reach the final.

“As the professional I see it as my job to give them a chance to enjoy the process,” he said. “Most of the contestants on Strictly have never danced before, they are so out of their comfort zone and they are having to dance in front of 12 million viewers.

“The first thing to do is make a friendship and then give everything I can to help them. You have to understand what an emotional journey they are going on and also to appreciate what their limits are.

“You also need to find out the best way to teach them. Everyone learns differently. Judy Love for example I could not teach her step by step. She would sit in a chair and watch me go through the steps and then she would do it.

“Once you’ve got the steps then you can look at sharpening everything up but you never really have enough time.”

Believe is clearly very personal to Graziano and something he’s very proud of.

“I’m on stage from the beginning to the end,” he said. “Every time I dance I want to give my best but with this show it’s another level to anything I’ve experienced before. At the end it’s so emotional that I can’t control myself.

“I honestly didn’t know if anyone would come out to see the show and the response has been humbling. It is a dream come true.”

Believe is at King George’s Hall, Blackburn, on Sunday. March 24. Details from