The former soap star, who exited the BBC One dance contest during last Sunday's semi-final, described getting the chance to dance musical theatre numbers as a lifelong dream.
"I thought after one ballroom dance I'd be back in Manchester," Riley told It Takes Two.
Describing the whole experience as phenomenal, she added: "I can't walk four paces without people shouting, 'Give us a twirl Riley'.
"To perform with Robin [Windsor] has been mega. It's flipped my whole life upside down. I feel in our way we've won. There's not one negative thing about us doing the show.
"I want all my friends to do Strictly, it's the best experience ever."
Her pro partner Windsor commented: "She's the biggest personality in the competition. It's what none of the other contestants had and it's why people were picking up the phone for her."
Riley also revealed that she would be backing her "double Ds", Denise Van Outen and Dani Harmer, to go and win the series.
Photo gallery - Strictly semi-final in pictures: