Debbie McGee is an English television, radio and stage performer best known for her relationship with Paul Daniels.
At the age of 16 Debbie McGee won a place at the Royal Ballet School. After graduating, she joined the Iranian National Ballet Company in Tehran and soon became part of the Corps de Ballet (later performing solo), but her ballet career was brought to an abrupt halt by the Iranian Revolution.
Seeking new work she auditioned for the Bernard Delfont Organisation, which was responsible for a number of big summer resort shows and touring productions.
Delfont found her a job performing on stage with magician Paul Daniels in his 1979 summer show in Great Yarmouth.
After some winter work in pantomime, Debbie joined Paul again for his 1980 summer season in Bournemouth. She then performed in his London stage show It’s Magic, which opened on 10 December 1980 and which, by the time it closed 14 months later, had become one of the longest running magic shows ever to play in the West End.
McGee achieved national and international fame through television appearances with Daniels. After seeing her on stage in the West End, BBC producer John Fisher asked Debbie to appear in the BBC One series The Paul Daniels Magic Show. The hit show continued until 1994 and regularly attracted audiences of 15 million in the UK. Daniels regularly referred to Debbie on his TV shows as “The lovely Debbie McGee”, a phrase that entered popular culture as a stereotype for magicians’ assistants. Daniels and McGee were married in Buckinghamshire in April 1988.
On 1 April 2007 Debbie and Paul appeared with Vanessa Feltz and her fiancé Ben Ofoedu in a celebrity edition of Channel 4’s hit reality show Wife Swap. A year later Debbie appeared on Ant & Dec’s Saturday Night Takeaway. Debbie has also starred in the celebrity version of Come Dine with Me.
In August 2017 it was announced that Debbie McGee would be a contestant on the fifteenth series of Strictly Come Dancing. Her professional dance partner was Giovanni Pernice.